In recent days Helen Ball, Town Clerk to Shrewsbury Town Council and SLCC Director, has been working closely with the Association of Play Industries (API) to communicate the challenges presented by the Government’s guidelines on the re-opening of play areas. As a result, a virtual meeting has been arranged for today (2nd July) which will see MHCLG discuss the guidelines with a number of key stakeholders from the play sector including API, the Register of Play Inspectors International (RPII) and the Play Safety Forum (PSF). Helen Ball will be representing the SLCC in the discussions and we are hopeful that this will be a step towards changes to the guidelines. However, as the deadline for the reopening of playgrounds is imminent, it is unlikely that any such changes will be implemented by the 4th July.
The API has released its own interpretation of the guidance which will be discussed in the meeting with MHCLG today. API Chair Mark Hardy says: “Our summary allows practical solutions that will allow public play areas to re-open at the weekend. Whilst it’s not our role to provide formal guidance, we hope we have managed to facilitate a reasonable approach and clarified some of the main areas of concern.”
On the 26 June 2020 the Government published guidance for managing playgrounds and outdoor gyms. Click here to view the Government guidance.