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Geographies for play in austere times

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journal contribution
posted on 10.11.2015, 16:28 by John H. McKendrick, Peter Kraftl, Sarah MillsSarah Mills, Stefanie Gregorius, Grace Sykes
This concluding essay to a collection of 10 papers examining, Best of times to worst of times? Appraising the changing landscape of play in the UK, reviews six key themes that emerge – re-fuelling longstanding tensions within playwork; organisational legacy of the investment years; broad acceptance of the wider value of play in society; the need to develop a critical play intelligence within the sector; the reconfiguration of play geographies and the impact of play provision on local play cultures; and the need for a much more central focus on play cultures in our enquiry. Without question, Austerity has undermined the public investment in play and play services that characterised the UK in early years of the Millennium. Nevertheless, for every ‘threat’ that this poses, others are able and willing to conceptualise this as an opportunity to reprioritise play priorities. It is argued that play is resilient, and adept an adapting to the changing realities of the financial landscape.



  • Social Sciences


  • Geography and Environment

Published in

International Journal of Play


MCKENDRICK, J.H. ... et al, 2015. Geographies for play in austere times. International Journal of Play, 4(3), pp.291-298.


© Taylor and Francis


AM (Accepted Manuscript)

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Publication date



This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in International Journal of Play on 23 Dec 2015, available online:





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