Hornimans has been around since the 1960’s, the playground was set up unofficially by local parents in 1969, a time when the use of junk, corrugated iron sheets and scrap wood were order of the day.
Hornimans is a charity number 1198333 we rely on donations, funding from trusts and foundations and are commissioned by RBK&C. This is how we keep Hornimans as a free, safe play space for children and young people aged 5 – 16 years.
The playground is run by a trained staff team of playworkers. Lorna – ,Manager, Weezy Senior Playworker, Marta, Jamie, Dominic and sessional playworkers Jonny and Aidan. Along with our wonderful volunteers Amina, Peter and ex member Wesley who give their time throughout the year to help us run the playground.
We have a large, spacious outdoor adventure playground, with large wooden play structures, some of which are now being replaced funded by the Wonderful Postcode Lottery Fund and RBKC 106 fund. We still need to raise funds for lots of other equipment, materials for workshops and activities as well as play structures that are traditional and survive the course of time. Working with London Play Design team led by Max Muller, structure builder extraordinaire and his team also gives the children the opportunity to get involved with consultation on how their structures will look.
We have a ground floor building which has one large main hall, art room, office, store room, computer design/music room, toilets and a disabled toilet with shower. We also have a well-used kitchen where many a cooking clubs take place during the holiday periods and also a daily tuck shop.
At the back of the building there is a quiet garden with an area that Amena, our lovely volunteer and Mother to children who attend daily and Marta one of our talented playworkers are re-establishing as a nature area. We also run a kitchen garden where the children and young people work alongside Marta to Grow Their Own produce for use in the kitchen.
Directly outside the building we have a small concrete play area where the children can play games such as Champ, badminton, table tennis and volleyball. We have access to a sports pitch which forms part of Hornimans Pleasance park which we use for dodgeball, cricket and tennis at times when it’s not booked out.
Hornimans gives our children and young people an opportunity to learn and develop in their own time, in a play space where they are supervised and cared for by our playworkers who enjoy their work and are happy to be supportive.
Planned activities/workshops in arts and crafts, sport, cooking, drama and music, alongside free play are on offer as well as a mini library and dressing up boxes. Our environment encourages the children to build self confidence, to embrace different cultures, test their abilities and by just being here and playing with other children they learn how to share, to negotiate, how to be tolerant, and of course, to have huge amounts of fun.
Rigorous health and safety checks each year and to keep the adventure a safe and exciting place the staff do daily site checks and regular maintenance of the structures, outside area and building.
We really hope you pop in to see us soon.