Work with local schools 

The PlayBack Project worked alongside Huntingdon Academy and Sneinton C of E Primary Schools in Nottingham. We started by visiting the children within school and sharing some traditional games. We played playground games such as Hopscotch, leap frog, snobs and marbles. We also shared skipping and clapping rhymes and the children shared some of the playground games they play today.  

Vintage toys from yesteryear including whip and tops, wooden hoops and conkers were explored and played with. We encouraged children to ask their families how they played as a child and discussed some of the differences and similarities. 

One of the aims of the project was to share a wide range of games that the children could play with little or no equipment and share them with their peers.  

St Anns Community Orchard 

We visited The Community Orchard at St Anns Allotments in October 2018, just in time for the children to have a go at apple pressing using the abundance of apples that they grow on site, and then tasting the delicious juice that they made. 

The children were also able to take part in a wide range of activities such as den building, cooking breadsticks on an open fire and exploring the site. The children really enjoyed the freedom of the open space and roaming whilst on the nature scavenger hunt. 

‘My favourite part was the allotments because we got to make food and eat food and make dens and I also loved the museum because we got to go through chimneys’ 

Sudbury Hall and the Museum of Childhood 

In November we visited the National Trusts Museum of Childhood at Sudbury Hall. Here the children got another taste of how children lived in the past including how they played. We looked at the differences between the toys of previous generations and those of today and the children learnt about some of the challenge’s children faced in the Victorian era, such as being chimney sweeps this was brought to life by the replica chimney they were able to climb. 

‘My favourite part was the special gardens and making bread on campfire. Playing with old toys in museum.’ 



Children from Sneinton C of E Primary School play with the yo-yo’s at The Museum of Childhood. Sudbury Hall 


Climbing the chimney at The Museum of Childhood was something many of the children told us they enjoyed  

After Schools Clubs 

 We held after school clubs at Huntingdon Academy to further explore play from the past. The children made play resources such as marble mats, friendship sticks and skipping elastic that could be taken home and also used within school play times.  We also provided a range of items such as skipping ropes, snobs and spinning tops so the children could develop their play with traditional games. The children were also able to try screen printing, using an old screen with a PlayWorks logo from the 1980’s to design a Tote bag. 


‘We have been learning about the cup and ball an old toy. I have been doing lots of playing games and it made me happy. I like to play.’