Hampstead Heath One O’Clock Club playscheme saved after public campaign

Plans have been announced to stop staffing the One O'Clock Club and other Heath play facilities. Pic

Plans have been announced to stop staffing the One O'Clock Club and other Heath play facilities. Picture: Nigel Sutton - Credit: Nigel Sutton

A popular children’s playscheme on Hampstead Heath has been saved from closing for half the year after a campaign backed by more than 2,200 people.

The One O’Clock Club for under-fives was among several play facilities in Parliament Hill facing cuts from the City of London corporation, which runs the Heath.

But after a campaign mounted by concerned parents and Heath users and a consultation with staff members, the City announced this morning that the crèche will now run all year round.

The City had planned to only open the club for two hours from April until October.

In a statement, Hampstead Heath superintendent, Bob Warnock, said: “When young people are connected to nature it has positive impacts on their education, physical health, emotional wellbeing, and personal and social skills. We are grateful to staff and the public.

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“Their input is helping us move towards a more focussed learning and play offer for children from the Heath’s local communities.”?

It was proposed that up to 10 people could lose their jobs under a proposal to stop staffing the Heath’s play facilities, including the Adventure Playground and Parliament Hill Playground.

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A petition was launched against the cuts, which has so far gathered more than 2,200 signatures. Radio DJ Edith Bowman, of Gospel Oak, is among the signatories.

It is as yet unclear how many jobs could still be lost following the City’s review of the proposal.

More to follow on this breaking story as it comes.

See tomorrow’s Ham&High for in-depth coverage of the issue.

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