Doncaster Council set to introduce play park policy to improve quality and safety

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Doncaster Council has formulated its first play park policy with aims to encourage more children to play in safe, quality environments.

On Wednesday (13 September), the council’s cabinet will vote whether to approve the first Doncaster Play Parks Infrastructure Policy.

The policy will monitor and assess the quality of Doncaster’s existing parks and set out visions and principles for what should be included in each.

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It aims to make provision of play equipment more equal across the borough, so it meets the needs of all citizens.

A decision is due to be made tomorrowA decision is due to be made tomorrow
A decision is due to be made tomorrow

This includes making equipment more accessible for those with disabilities.

Currently, there are 286 play parks across Doncaster.

The council aims to potentially reduce this number in areas with an abundance of provision to instead improve quality across a smaller number of sites.

In the policy, the council highlights the importance of physical play among children for improving their physical and mental health and cognitive ability.

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Among Doncaster’s year 6 children, 20.6 percent are classified as obese.

Levels of inactivity can be seen particularly in lower socio-economic areas including Balby, Highfields, and parts of Conisbrough and Mexbrough.

The council used this data to determine where the highest need for play parks is to adopt its strategy.

A period of public consultation also took place which involved methods such as an online survey, teacher-led exercises in schools and research from Doncaster College Art students.

Assessments of existing parks rated Elmfield Park in Hyde Park highest in terms of quality.

Adwick Road park was rated the lowest in terms of quality due to old and damaged equipment.

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