National Playday in Yeovil draws thousands of people for free fun

Hundreds of families arrived in Yeovil for free fun including tree climbing, stilt walkers and water games at the National Playday event on Wednesday 1 August.

The annual National Playday event - which is organised and funded by the Community Health & Leisure Team at South Somerset District Council (SSDC) - offered a huge variety of activities and experiences for children and young people across South Somerset and beyond. It's estimated that up to 8,000 children and adults participated in the activities.

Yeovil Country Park was a filled with happy faces enjoying activities such as circus skills, Bugfest and a traditional Punch & Judy show.

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Organiser Rob Parr, SSDC's Senior Play and Youth Facilities Officer said: "The weather was perfect for what was the biggest National Play Day we've ever organised.

"I want to thank all of the staff, volunteers and partner organisations who came together to make this event such an extraordinary success, and there's so much more to come this summer."

Playday is the national day for play, traditionally held on the first Wednesday in August. It is part of a campaign that highlights the importance of play in children's lives.

Alongside fun sessions, there were activities that taught families about pond life and bugs, while PlayArt Education taught parents and children how to use recycled materials to create pieces of art. Education initiative Wilder Woods helped children make wands while there was also a visit from a dragon, stilt walkers and more. Organisations taking part in the Yeovil event additionally included LED Leisure, Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue, Yeovil District Hospital and the RSPB. The Council would also like to thank Em Ben, The Great Big Tree Climbing Company and Active Learning & Skills among many others.

Councillor Sylvia Seal, South Somerset's Portfolio Holder for Leisure and Culture added: "This is an event that has engaged so many families of all ages. It was wonderful to see children enjoying the many free activities. Playdays are a great way for families to meet people in their community as well as getting involved with South Somerset District Council, it is something that I hope to see continue through the next few years."

If you want to see more, visit our Facebook page where you can see a Facebook Live video at https://www.facebook.com/PlayYouthSouthSomerset/.

Further free Play Day events will be taking place across South Somerset for families and communities throughout August and September. This includes events in Somerton, Kingsbury Episcopi, Charlton Adam, Castle Cary, Wincanton, Templecombe, Milborne Port, Sparkford, Odcombe, Merriott, Crewkerne, Chard, Combe St Nicholas, Ilminster, and Ilton.

To find your nearest Playday, visit www.southsomerset.gov.uk/playdays or go to the Facebook page www.facebook.com/PlayYouthSouthSomerset