Taking Play Forward

Play is one of the most important building blocks for all our learning. In our first five years we learn everything that will enable us to function as human beings, and most of that we learn by playing. Every nursery rhyme you sing, the counting songs, the games of Peep Bo, all support a baby and young child’s learning of their world and how it works.

Play is still a hugely significant part of a child’s life as it starts school and continues growing. Through play we test our abilities both physically and socially – riding a bicycle, balancing on a fallen tree, playing snakes and ladders or ludo, hide and seek, all support a child’s growth and developmentŸ we learn to lose, to take turns, to compromise with other children, to fall out and make it up; to make friends and keep them.

Over a number of years York has had a focus on the importance of play, which has been clearly visible through its policy, Taking Play Forward, first written in 2002 and refreshed in 2007, 2010,  2013 and again in 2016.

Download a copy of Taking Play Forward – York’s Play policy

Community Play: Better Play Grants  2015/18

Thanks to all those that applied for a Better Play Grant. Following a rigorous short listing process the following organisations were awarded funding for their projects.






Name of Organisation

About the project

Funded Year 1

Funded Year 2

Funded Year 3

The Wonder Years

Staff training to introduce new activities into the club.




York Down Syndrome Support Group

To provide support to the parents - learning about play strategies and techniques that will bolster speech and language skills.





To offer disabled children and young people a variety of quality play and recreational opportunities in Easter and Summer school holiday periods from 2015 to ending March 2018.




Door 84

To extend current provision by raising the capacity of currents session and attract new young people to attend; host 3 large community events and develop the roles of staff and volunteers within the organisation




The Island

To employ a Playworker to introduce playwork principles and practices into current youth session run by the Island.




Chapelfields OOSC

To provide free and subsidised session to families experiencing disadvantage through defined criteria ( to be reviewed after yr 1 to inform allocation for years 2 & 3)










Projects over £5k were formally approved at a decision session of the Cabinet Member for Education, Children and Young People on Friday, 27th March, 2015

As the funding was not allocated for all 3 years, we will run future funding rounds in January of 2016 and 2017, to allocate the remaining amount. Bids that are over £5k will again seek approval of the Cabinet Member.


Useful documents