Sindbads Soft Play Centre Wimbledon SW20

Sindbad's is a new soft play centre opening in Raynes Park, themed around the voyages of Sindbad (Sinbad) the Sailor. Here's the new web site:

Sindbads Soft Play







Design and Build Play

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Handing the play space back to the child

Our play structures encourage children to adapt the environment to their play needs.

We create play spaces from their designs where they can add to structures, change the use of areas to experience different heights and levels and encounter and overcome risk.


Our consultation method has been cited by the Children's Play Council as a model of good practice ("Not just Swings and Roundabouts" CPC 2003)
Throughout each of our consultation projects with children we promote the principles of :

  • Discovery
  • Inclusion
  • Empowerment & Democracy

This is facilitated by two experienced consultation workers who lead design workshops and research trips that help children to broaden their experience of play provision and the design process.

We help children to develop skills in drawing, designing, model making, team work, reflective analysis and construction principles. This work has enriched school curricula and formed the blue prints to transform and enhance play sites across London.

"We congratulate Design + Build Play on their approach which involves children and young people in designing and building quality and fun play spaces" London Play


The team

The Design + Build Play team is composed of play professionals and community artists who have been working together for the past five years with the specific intention of creating stimulating and challenging environments for children to play in.

We champion children's involvement throughout the whole process of creating new play environments. This is done by enabling children to design new play structures and criticise existing ones. We help them to take part in building their designs and give them tools to evaluate the finished products.

Our combined service of consultation, training and construction makes it possible to create enduring play spaces that children and playworkers can be proud of.

Haringey Council, Greenwich Council, Watford Council, Voluntary Organisations, Play Associations and London Adventure Playgrounds have used Design + Build Play services.
All have benefited from receiving reports with an evidenced based development plan to help prioritise, train and fundraise in the future.

New Play Structures

We are committed to constructing high quality adventure play structures and environments, designed and voted for by children in the initial consultation stage.
Children's designs are translated by our build team using current play theory and by looking at the play space in a holistic way. We then build the children's designs to meet current industry guidelines.

During the construction process we endeavour to transfer skills and confidence to children, playworkers, teachers and trainees so they are able to continually adapt and build onto the play environment after project completion.


from children using Somerford Grove Adventure Playground, a partnership project with Haringey Play Association and Design + Build Play team members

"I feel proud because I helped build it" boy aged 13

"I've learnt new technology; like how to make things, how to build and how not to use tools" girl aged 9

"I've learnt how to build a fire, swing safely and how to do dangerous difficult things without hurting myself" boy aged 8


To provide high quality play spaces for children we need to understand the developmental importance of children's play and how playwork can be best implemented.

Our qualified trainers have extensive experience in play training and share their love and passion for play with knowledge of its benefits for children in every training session.

We offer training to playworkers and non play professionals in play principles and play work, consultation with children, play space construction, tool use and materials, health and safety in adventure play building and project planning.
For details please contact us for an information pack

"I found the instructors very helpful, knowledgeable on the subject and they related well to the group" (playworker in training for Greenwich Play Services Nov 2005)

Consultation method

Design + Build Play Consultation Method

Below outlines the principles of our consultations with children and the elements used to offer sufficient stimulus for children to be meaningfully involved in the process of designing their new playground.


  • Exploring new ideas through initial to final stage drawings, and model making.
  • Trips to exemplary adventure playgrounds and sculpture parks to get new ideas.
  • Learning new skills that compliment cross curricula learning.
  • Children criticise and map their play environment by making a large scale 3d model of the site and on site investigations.
  • Finding out what each other think through discussion and video interviewing


  • A variety of methods and materials are used to help all children develop their ideas and
    designs or to express their likes and dislikes.
  • Activities are geared towards varying ages and skill levels to allow inclusive
    access to the planning process.
  • Children are encouraged to talk about what they need to be able to play
    and are actively listened to
  • They are challenged to think about children with different needs to their own


  • The participants are encouraged to use new equipment and learn new skills such as model making and video recording to help communicate their ideas.
  • Activities are arranged to help develop their analytical and critical skills. This gives their voice authority in any future planning process.
  • Children are encouraged to take ownership of design and voting process via child centred workshops. .
  • Children see their designs actually being built, this fosters a community pride and builds their self esteem.
  • Children are encouraged to continue to push their ideas forward and to carry on taking an active role in the future of their playground when the consultation has finished.


  • All children take part in voting and debates to select designs for the building stage.
  • The children are encouraged take charge and monitor this process.
  • Building their designs also builds confidence and fosters a belief in how they can make a positive difference to their environment and society.
  • Children have first hand experience of making collective design decisions and practise debating to back up their preferences.

NOTE: for Graphic Design and Print services go here