Accessible Play

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About Accessible Play

So far, there is very little information available on what play equipment is available for children with disabilities. Having contacted the manufacturers and some local authorities, it has become clear that there is no central repository for this, so it's time to start one!

The vestibular system is often neglected in children with physical disabilities, as they are often unable to run around like able bodied children, so inclusive play equipment has medical benefits as well as being more fun.


Currently there don't appear to be any tags to define what play equipment exists in a leisure=playground, so first on the list is to agree on a set of tags for that.

Next on the list is getting people to identify what is in their local playground and map it

We also need renderer support. I'm not going to suggest this goes into the default slippy map but it would be great to have it as some kind of selectable overlay.

I propose to add it to the wheelchar map
So far a few playgrounds are tagged leisure=playground + wheelchair=yes.
It is already possible to add descriptions to objects with wheelchair:description:en=English description blind:description:en=English description or deaf:description:en=English description --Lulu-Ann 21:38, 14 March 2010 (UTC)
Unfortunately, *:description:*=* are natural language descriptions and are therefore not consistent or machine readable. --Waldo000000 20:05, 25 March 2010 (UTC)


Existing Data

A scan of 'england' exported from OSM on 16 March 2010 lists 1804 playgrounds with extra tags, of which 4 have useful note fields and 3 description fields. 138 have an 'operator' tag - mainly councils or schools. There is absolutely nothing listing what ability level the equipment is aimed at.

Play Equipment Types

  • Swings , with chairs and/or pommels
Swing seat for inclusive play
Standard baby swing
Standard play swing, for comparison
Wave or Hammock swing
  • Roundabouts, with space for wheelchairs or bucket seats
  • Tactile equipment (I know nothing about what blind kids like someone help me out here!)
  • Slides - wide ones which a child could use accompanied, or deep sided ones that they are less likely to fall out of or roll down
Non-accessible slide
  • Springies - these are chairs mounted on a big spring. The one shown here is marketed as being accessible, because it has a full seat and has well places grab bars; however we've not found it very useful. A corner case perhaps on what should be considered accessible play.
  • Soft Play centres


Thanks to Lulu-Ann for guidance on this, and the dozens of people on Facebook ( )who have already identified a large number of sites with accessible play equipment.