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Council to stop traffic with new 'play streets' for children

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Council to stop traffic with new 'play streets' for children

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Published by Jon Land for 24dash.com in Local Government and also in Communities, Housing

Council to stop traffic with new 'play streets' for children Council to stop traffic with new 'play streets' for children

Islington Council has made it easier for the residents to set up 'play streets' for children.

From this month (7 April), residents will be able to make a no-charge application to have their street fully closed to through traffic for up to 3 hours on one or more occasion throughout the year, so children can play games, run or kick a ball about in safety.

The initiative is being championed by Cllr Andy Hull, Islington Council's executive member for finance and performance, who said:

"Many Islington families don't have access to gardens, so creating a safe, fun play area on their doorstep is a great idea.

"We want to support these play streets and encourage communities to imagine what they could do in their road without cars.

"We are making it easy to close your street without too much paperwork or any cost – while keeping children safe."

Residents’ and visitors’ cars and delivery vehicles will still be able to access play streets but only at walking pace - children will take precedence over vehicles.

Closures will be marshalled by community volunteers and all events will be under adult supervision. Emergency services access will be preserved at all times.

Paul Hocker of London Play said: "London Play welcomes Islington Council’s new play street policy. It is a borough that has always valued play, most notably through its adventure playgrounds. Now with a great street play offer it is taking play right to children’s doorsteps."

Certain routes will be excluded from the scheme, including bus routes, highly trafficked roads or those with adjacent closures already agreed.

It will be up to neighbours to glean support for these temporary play street closures by door knocking, postering and leafleting.

Highbury resident Deb Hermer of Canning Road, N5, said: "Street play is great fun. Children love the freedom to play out and parents and older neighbours get a chance to chat over a cup of tea.

"Our first play street was a huge success. It's great that it's being made easier to do it more often".

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