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Understanding the guidance for outdoor sport and play in England

Understanding the guidance for outdoor sport and play in England
Uniplay - Playground Markings / Resources / Understanding the guidance for outdoor sport and play in England

Understanding the guidance for outdoor sport and play in England

The guidance for outdoor sport and play in England is published by Fields in Trust, who are responsible for implementing and maintaining standards for all communities across the country.

The guidance on creating opportunities for outdoor play, works towards improving the overall standard for both children and adults to participate in sport. This includes establishing how resources are created whilst also providing legislation on open space and meeting sustainability requirements within towns and cities.

A key goal for Fields in Trust is to promote healthy communities, protecting our open spaces in residential areas and much more. As part of this guidance there is key information on including LAPs, LEAPs, NEAPs and MUGAs.

Outdoor Play Areas: LAPs, LEAPs, NEAPs and MUGAs throughout England

As part of the outdoor sport and play guidance there are several community areas which are required within new or existing development, these include:


A Local Area for Play is based directly within the community, designed to create a play area for young children to play very closely to their home, within one minute’s walking time where possible. LAPs can contain a wide range of playground equipment including markings, soft surface areas and other resources suitable for a younger age range. 


Local Equipped Areas for play are targeted towards children who are just beginning their independent play, understanding how to engage in play alone and without the intervention of adults. LEAPs are also based within the community and provide opportunities for children to play rather than focusing on a number of pieces of equipment. LEAPs often utilise thermoplastic playground markings due to their creativity and options for children to engage in solo play.


Neighbourhood Equipped Areas for Play are sites which should be tailored towards the requirements of children ages 8-14 years. In terms of location, NEAPs are typically within 15 minutes walking time from residential areas. As NEAPs are tailored to older children, different types of play equipment are often integrated into these play areas including climbing equipment and playground markings.


Multi-use games areas are designed to include several different sporting activities within one area, these can include sports court markings and equipment such as hoops, goals and more. MUGAs are also often installed within school projects for pupils to enjoy multiple activities within one playground or PE sporting area.

Working with UniPlay

At UniPlay we specialise in providing playground markings throughout the UK. Working with a wide range of clients including schools, local councils and organisations which promote improving activity levels and resources for play within our communities.

Our creative teams design and install thermoplastic playground markings which are durable, vibrant and engaging for young people of all ages. As we have our own design team, we create everything from scratch and so, can tailor our designs to a wide range of project and initiatives.

If you are in the process of planning outdoor space solutions for the community, do not hesitate to get in touch with our team. Simply call our head office on 033 321 6695 or email info@uni-play.co.uk and we will be in touch as soon as possible.

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