Room 13 Hareclive is an artists’ studio co-run by children in Hartcliffe, south Bristol. Working with Playing Out and Knightstone Housing locally, we commissioned them to find out whether children play out in the area and any barriers to this. When we got their answers, we commissioned them to do something about it. Carrying out research in Hareclive Primary School, making their own film, speaking out in a residents’ film, marching, hosting an event – Room 13 is turning concerns and ideas into action and change and showing just what children can do if we give them the opportunity.
Room 13’s research shows that some children in Hareclive school never play out and nearly all children want to play out more. If children could go out, they would want to: meet up with friends, go to relatives’ houses, play football, go on bikes and scooters, explore, go to the park, have adventures…: “All the things YOU used to do when you were young!” Their report is a deep and rich collection of children’s views on all things playing out.
This – and the fear of this from parents – were identified as the biggest things stopping children from having more freedom. This problem has also been identified by police and local residents as a major concern in the area. Here is Room 13’s amazing film about the need for safer streets for children – planned, written, acted in and produced by them:
Room 13 children say in their film: “We’re all in this together. Let’s change things!” Some Hartcliffe residents have been working hard to try and slow traffic on their street. But it’s too big a problem for one street to solve… Here are the views from residents:
Both films were shown to a packed hall at a special event in St Andrew’s church, Hartcliffe, co-hosted by children.
We know that starting small leads to change, so here’s some suggestions for what we can do together for safer streets:
Read about what Kate, Dinah and Jo have done on their streets, working with neighbours and other parents to change things for children so they can play out. Sign up to our blog to stay in touch with playing out around the country.