TEMPORARY street closures could be introduced in the Vale to make it safer for children to play outdoors.

The Vale of Glamorgan Council has been working closely with residents in the Vale to implement safe, temporary street closures for children to be able to play.

Play Streets, or Playing Out Sessions, are neighbour-led temporary road closures, which have already proved popular across the UK.

The Vale Council say this is all part of the council’s plan to build an active and healthy Vale, providing safe outdoor spaces will encourage children to participate in more active play.

The council also say the introduction of Play Streets should also have a positive effect on air quality by reducing carbon emissions during the road closure period. This will contribute to the council’s Project Zero initiative to become carbon neutral by 2030.

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Roads closed for two hours a month

The Vale Play Team have been working cooperatively with Play Wales and residents to implement street closures for outdoor play at two locations in the Vale.

Romilly Road and Dunraven Street, both located in Barry, are the focus of the Play Street pilot scheme.

Each road will close for a total of two hours a month for the next 12 months, during which, children and residents can engage in outdoor play and socialisation.

Residents of the roads will be provided with signage, hi-vis wear, a small play-kit, and information cards to carry out the road closure. 

The Vale of Glamorgan Council’s community play development officer will also be on hand to support and monitor during the closures.

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‘Streets should be for everyone, not just cars’

Cllr Gwyn John, cabinet member for leisure, sport and wellbeing, said the initiative would help share the streets better.

“It is the council’s aim to make our communities more play friendly by increasing quality opportunities for play throughout the Vale,” said Cllr John.

“Streets make up a considerable amount of public space and should be for everyone, not just cars.

“Not everyone has access to a garden and some children can’t get to public parks or open spaces so easily.

“For a child, the most accessible everyday space is the one right outside their front door. By introducing a temporary road closure where possible, we can ensure that children have a safe space to engage in outdoor play, establish friendships, and build confidence.

“The intended outcome of this pilot scheme is for more children to enjoy the health, social, cognitive and emotional benefits that outdoor play provides which also aligns with the Council’s goal of creating a healthy Vale and a healthy Wales.”

If the pilot scheme proves successful, play-related road closures could be made available for eligible roads across the Vale. 

Good idea or going down a road to cause more congestion? Let us know at harry.jamshidian@newsquest.co.uk.