Dangerous Playgrounds

playing on the monkey barsWhen I was a kid in the seventies we went to the park on our own and played on the climbing frame, monkey bars and swings however we wanted to. There was a concrete floor and if you bashed your head on it then it was your own stupid fault. Under the big climbing frame in our park was a sandpit, to catch you in case you fell. Good thinking on the part of the park designers. Except that amongst the sand were large quantities of cat and dog crap, smashed glass, rubbish and bricks.

Our mothers didn’t write to the council and complain that the playground was dangerous, they just put stinging TCP onto our heads and told us to stop crying. Well, at least that was the case for some of us. Obviously some parents did write to the council to complain or we wouldn’t have the spongy floor and safety-conscious climbing experiences that are the playgrounds we get today.

When we were bored with the playground, we would go up to the building site, which wasn’t fenced off. I remember playing house in a half-built real house and nicking boxes of nails to nail into a tree so I could climb it. Ah, those were the days!

Josie Henley-Einion, author, blogger, Legend in my own Living Room


One Response

  1. I was just talking about this today. We went to this amazing park this morning with a huge rocket ship structure. “Apparently” it’sconsidered too dangerous to use- so the playgorund is full of “safe” playing areas instead. But it was used for years and years- and every kid wants to climb it- it’s such a shame they can’t

    Bring back dangerous play areas! That’s what I say!

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