In 2008 PATH were offered a grant by Kerrygold, yes the butter people, to create a play space. Building on the links made with Registered Social Landlords through PATHFINDER, the government funding for play linked to the, sadly, now scrapped National Play Strategy PATH worked with EastEndHomes to create the Cow Garden in Mile End. BBC Children in Need also funded work in this area, working through estate regeneration with children, families and EEH.
We called this Community Play Development, focusing in the Mile End area of Tower Hamlets outdoor beaches were created during summer holidays and Wednesday play sessions became a regular activity running for years after the core funding finished. Supported by EEH a PATH Play Development worker ran Southern Grove Community Centre, putting play at the heart of its operations, seeing play spaces redesigned, community led events and the centre offer knitting clubs, film nights, community feasts and other playful ideas so local people of all ages got to play.
‘The String of Beads’ and ‘The Plog’ are a part of the development of this strand of PATH’s work.
Thanks to all the funders, most recently Co-op Community fund who enabled PATH to run playful events in from the Cow Garden in 2018.