All ready to play in the Grassmarket

Edinburgh’s historic Grassmarket will be transformed into a giant children’s play area tomorrow (Wednesday 30 July) to promote play in the city.

Edinburgh playdayThe enclosed street in the Old Town will be transformed from 12.30pm, with lots of family-friendly activities on offer including junk drumming, giant weaving, magic potions, a giant sand pit, water play, and a cardboard city.

The event hopes to build on the successes of previous years where thousands of people have came along to join in with Playday activities.

Playday is the national day for play, which is being celebrated next week. On Playday thousands of children and their families get out to play at hundreds of community events across the UK.

As well as a celebration of children's right to play, Playday is a campaign that highlights the importance of play in children's lives. It’s all about learning for life and showing that play is fun not just for the child but for adults as well.

Councillor Keith Robson, Play Champion for the City of Edinburgh Council, said: “Play is a massively important part of a child’s development and makes a tremendous contribution to happy and healthy childhoods. Our very popular Playday in the Grassmarket provides a fantastic opportunity to celebrate play and promote its many benefits.

"One of our objectives is that we want to ensure that communities recognise the importance of play for children especially outdoor play. Not only are there significant health benefits from being out in the open air, but also exposure to a range of different activities can help a child’s development.

"Here in Edinburgh we're very lucky to have some fantastic outdoor spaces and I would encourage all parents to get outdoors with their children during these lovely summer months. The great park at west end of Princes Street Gardens has been a family favourite these holidays when friends have been visiting from around the UK."

Edinburgh's Playday event will be held in the Grassmarket from 12.30pm - 4.30pm. On offer will be a giant sand pit, water play, magic potions, cardboard city, play pod, mud kitchen, giant weaving, play for babies, junk drumming and much more!

Access is free but children should be accompanied by an adult. For more information contact

There have already been two meetings of the Edinburgh Play Forum which is made up of various community groups, schools and other organisations with an interest in promoting play in the city.  The aim is to make Edinburgh a playful city where children can enjoy their childhood.

The Council is currently updating it’s Play Strategy which will be discussed at the Education, Children & Families Committee later in the year.

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