Families in Mid Sussex were treated to free play days across the district.
They were organised by Mid Sussex District Council to coincide with national Play Day – a campaign that highlights the importance of play in children’s lives.
The first play day took place at Victoria Park in Haywards Heath last Wednesday (August 1), followed by a play day at St John’s Park in Burgess Hill the following day.
This week has also seen a further two events – at King George’s Field in East Grinstead on Tuesday (August 7), and at Court Bushes Recreation Ground in Hurstpierpoint today (August 8).
Councillor Gary Marsh, cabinet member for service delivery, said: “Our play days are always tremendous fun for all the family and we had another great line-up of activities this year.
“Parents know that it’s not easy to keep the little ones entertained during the school holidays so it’s great that we are able provide free family activities at convenient locations across the district.”
Councillor Norman Webster, cabinet member for community, added: “Our play days provide a wonderful opportunity for the community to get together and enjoy a fun afternoon with friends, family and neighbours.”
The theme for this year’s play days was ‘beside the seaside’ and all the activities were inspired by the traditional British beach holiday.
There were donkey rides, Punch and Judy shows, a bouncy castle and a helter skelter.
Children were also able to get their faces painted and race their friends using solar powered boats.
A spokesman for the district council said: “An arts tent enabled children to be creative and trained circus performers were on hand to show them how to juggle, hula-hoop, tightrope walk, and balance on stilts.
“One of the biggest issues facing our coastline and the ocean right now is plastic pollution spoiling our beaches, polluting our drinking water and killing wildlife.
“We had a plastic beach game for children to play to help them learn more about how we can reduce plastic on our beaches.”
This year’s events were supported by Clarion Housing Group, Places For People Leisure, Burgess Hill Town Council, East Grinstead Town Council and Haywards Heath Town Council.
Financial support provided by Clarion Housing Group enabled the district council to host a play day event in Hurstpierpoint for the very first time.
The money was part of the housing association’s Clarion Futures project – an initiative that aims to make estates and neighbourhoods more attractive and vibrant places to live.
To see more pictures from the events pick up this week’s Middy, which is out today (August 9).
And pick up next week’s edition (Thursday, August 16), to see our coverage of the play day in Hurstpierpoint.