Town Planning Review

Planning for children’s play: exploring the ‘forgotten’ right in Welsh and Scottish policy

Town Planning Review (2017), 88, (5), 579–602.

Abstract

A range of practical examples and research indicates that planners are not always equipped to critically consider children’s play. Whether this be due to policy, lack of knowledge or unwillingness, evidence suggests a lack of attention to children’s spatial needs is contributing to their marginalisation in public space. However, the right to play, rest, leisure and access to cultural life is enshrined in the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. This article examines what children’s play as a right means for planning systems, with particular reference to Scotland and Wales. Each nation takes a different approach, and the article concludes by suggesting ways in which policy could be strengthened to inform practice. This could help address children’s declining spatial freedom.

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Wood, Jenny