Play streets useful information

Play Streets duration/periods 

If approved you’re granted a temporary Play Street order, which allows a road to be closed for a maximum of three hours for one day, as a one-off event or on a regular weekly or monthly basis depending on what is submitted in the application.

Events will mostly take place outside peak times and at weekends.

The lead applicant is responsible for the Play Street event including: 

  • Recruiting volunteer stewards who are clearly visible at each road closure point to redirect traffic and reassure parents about concerns they may have about safety.
  • Putting up the Public Notices and storing signage, positioning barriers (may be in the form of wheeled bins) of closure, but we offer advice and can help provide signage and high viz vests if necessary. 
  • Ensure that permitted vehicles, street residents and emergency services have access to park and their homes as normal 

Play Street activities

Parents and children can bring out their own toys such as skipping ropes, bikes, scooters, roller blading, races, for more ideas you can visit the playing out website.

Playing out in the rain/windy weather

If stewards are happy to stand outside with umbrellas and you have addressed any additional risks, you can hold an event. 
For very windy weather, you need to make sure all signage is properly secured.

Why roads need to be closed

Closing the road gives parents more confidence to allow their children to play out while still allowing residents car access, without worry about other traffic. Some very quiet streets might not need to be closed. 

Ideally, we want our streets to be spaces where cars and people of all ages can coexist happily.

Access for car drivers 

‘Stewards’ or ‘Marshalls’ are responsible for making sure you can access your street, please drive at walking speed to make it safe for everyone. 

If you are concerned, please talk to the organisers to discuss your issues and agree a solution. 

Access for visitors/deliveries/business 

If a delivery needs to be made or someone is visiting, a steward will escort the driver at walking pace to their destination. 

Everyone within the closed street/area must be consulted as part of the application process, and if you are outside the closure area, talk to the organisers about your concerns. 

If you need access to parking for your customers, agree a compromise but remember there is no right to parking on a public highway, even for residents. 

Being supportive can also improve your business image and bring in new customers.

Children from other streets coming to your streets 

While events are for residents and only publicised through flyers and posters on that street, the streets are public spaces, so it may not be possible to stop people from other streets.

Noise nuisance from children playing outside 

If an event is unreasonably loud, we recommend organising a street meeting to discuss it and reach a solution everyone is happy with. 

Keeping children safe outside of Play Street sessions

Playing out sessions are a good opportunity for parents to talk to their children about road safety and the danger of traffic but also to observe what the streets could be like with less traffic, including thinking of ways to slow cars on their street.

Potential property damage

You may want to park elsewhere during the event, if you are worried about your car being damaged.

The liability if damage to property occurs, (including to cars) during a road closure, is the same as under normal circumstances i.e., people take responsibility for their own actions. 

Parents are ultimately responsible for their own children and residents need to resolve any issues between each other and their insurers. If you see children misbehaving, causing damage or injury, speak to them or their parents.

For more information about organising Play Streets, take a look at Playing Out FAQs