Arts workshop with Eyrescroft School & the Bretton Community

What makes you want to play in public space?

Our arts workshop run by the wonderful artist Isabella Martin, based in Copenhagen, was all about generating creative ideas to encourage people to be more playful in Bretton’s public spaces.

As before, the idea should be easy to maintain, of benefit to the community (give opportunity for social interaction), low cost and easy to replicate or upscale.

Our first workshop was with a fantastic and insightful year 6 class at Eyrescroft Primary school.

On arriving in the classroom, Isabella annonced for the next two hours I need to you all be designers! First up we had a brain storm of ideas: what games do you like to play outside and what activities makes you happy in public space?

Parkor, (electric) skipping, water parks, tree houses, underground play areas, social events, trampolines, laser quest, chalk boards that ask you questions every day.

The year 6 class put all their ideas around the room to provide inspiration later on!

Next up Isabella shared some exciting, international examples of creative interventions in public space that engender play!

These are some of our favourites:

With these as a further source of inspiration the class got to design, and design they did!

We received array of really exciting ideas: a flower mural painted on the ground with candles embedded in (to light for those who have past), new play areas with separate zones for children and teenagers (teenagers were not popular amongst the class!)

Other ideas included tree houses for homeless people, secret dens, a haunted house, outside trampolines and waterslides.

At the close the class were alerted to the budget constraints and whilst some of these ideas are a little ambitious, we will work to make them achievable within the monetary constraints!

We look forward to working with the class later to install the winning idea, voted for on 8 July at Bretton Festival!

Pyramid Community Centre (open workshop)

Our early evening workshop at the Pyramid functioned as more of a drop in session. We had a special guest to tell us a bit about a recent initiative in Peterborough city centre: Playing the City. When turned on the app would prompt the user to do playful things in city at specific points; such as waving from a bridge or play an impromptu game of hopscotch!

A group of young boys joined and told us about their ideas for improving Bretton skate park as regular users!

Other ideas included:

  • Painted compass on the ground – providing a non-smart phone based mode of orienteering!
  • May pole – lending itself to social events
  • Painted icons on the ground linking to surrounding points of interest – i.e Egyptian hieroglyphics painted near the Pyramid – enhancing a sense of local identity!

Isabella will now shortlist the 3 ideas to go to a public vote!

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