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Play in the Park is coming to new locations for Summer 2023

Children Playing Tug Of War

Our ever-popular Play in the Park event will be coming to even more local communities this summer holiday.

This wonderful event, which provides entertainment for kids and respite for parents during school holidays, is bigger than ever for Summer 2023. Not only is Play in the Park coming to more locations, but it is offering more activities than ever before!

Children aged 3-11 are invited to join our amazing team of ‘playworkers’ for free two-hour sessions, during which they will create, play, and take part in fun sports, games and craft activities. Ninety sessions will be held across twenty-two community and parish venues, from 24 July to 25 August.

Attendance to Play in the Park has increased consistently over recent years – with 6,500 children joining our Summer 2022 sessions – and we hope to cater to even more this year!

Children At Arts And Crafts Table

New venues added to Play in the Park schedule

To help us reach more of Chelmsford’s children throughout their school holidays, new venues have been added to Play in the Park’s schedule.

Andrews Park (Patching Hall Lane) will hold two sessions on 4 August, including an interactive reptile session, inflatables, and crafting sessions. Admirals Park in central Chelmsford will host storytelling sessions and inflatable fun on 22 August. The third and final new location, Beaulieu Community Garden, will host Parkour on 9 August and an inflatable assault course on 14 August.

Other locations include Great Waltham Recreation Ground, Runwell Park, and Springfield Parish Centre. Please visit www.chelmsford.gov.uk/play to find your nearest event, and to reserve your space.

Child Learning To Ride A Bike With His Dad

New learn-to-ride activities for summer 2023

Some old favourites are returning, such as inflatable assault courses, Parkour, craft sessions, and animal encounters, which are always popular with Play in the Park attendees. Excitingly, some new activities will feature, too!

New for summer 2023, Learn to Ride cycling sessions will be available at Great Leighs Village Green, Taylor’s Park, Broomfield Village Hall, and Dawson Memorial Field. Due to the nature of these sessions, there are limited spaces, so we ask that you book a place ASAP via www.chelmsford.gov.uk/play

Summer Reading Challenge sessions, running in partnership with Essex Libraries, are another new feature.

Children With Books On Their Faces

Summer Reading Challenge: Ready, Set, Read!

This year’s Summer Reading Challenge theme is sport and play, which links perfectly to Play in the Park!

We have teamed up with Essex Libraries to encourage children to take part in the challenge and get reading this summer. Library representatives will be visiting Compass Gardens, Chelmer Village Hall, Broomfield Village Hall, and Great Leighs Village Green, to help kids get ready, get set, and read!

Free summer holiday activities for Chelmsford’s children

Children Playing On Mini Obstacle Course

Councillor Natacha Dudley, Cabinet Deputy for Active Chelmsford, is pleased to see Play in the Park returning for residents.

"Play in the Park provides free activities for children during their school holidays, helping them make the most of their free time with the chance to play, create, and socialise with each other.

"It’s fantastic to see so many residents making use of Play in the Park, and I’m delighted that our Community Sport and Wellbeing team have been able to bring sessions to even more locations throughout the district this year.

"Interactive activity sessions like these are invaluable for children and being able to access them for free will hopefully ease some stress for parents who are struggling to occupy their children throughout (what can feel like a very long) six weeks off school!

"We hope that the new activities will keep these sessions exciting for those who regularly attend – and look forward to seeing new faces, too."

Cllr Natacha Dudley, Cabinet Deputy for Active Chelmsford

What you need to know

Play in the Park is suitable for everyone, including those with accessibility needs, and runs across multiple community venues in Chelmsford district, so you can find a session in a location that suits you.

Our Community Sport and Wellbeing team’s trusted playworkers run the programme of summer holiday activities, which encourage your children to take part in fun sports, games and craft activities.  Some sessions feature additional activities such as inflatables, face painting and even interactive animal encounters!  You can find all the details and book your child or children’s spaces online.

All children must be supervised (within the park/venue grounds) by a responsible adult, parent, or guardian throughout the whole session.  This is to ensure the safety of all children.

Boy Playing On Bouncy Castle

The event is completely free, but it is important that you book a ticket! There’s no need to book an adult place, but please be sure to reserve a spot for each child attending.

Children will need to arrive in suitable clothing for playing games outdoors, and with a snack and drink.

Dates, more information and booking details can all be found at www.chelmsford.gov.uk/play.

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Molly Smith
Molly Smith

Molly writes stories about public health, community safety, leisure, community sport, parking and Chelmsford Market.