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View: Grid List
Date
1982
Region
UK
Sector
Culture & Leisure Schools
Budget
< £1m
Client
HAPA
Location
London Borough of Lambeth
Team
Stern & Woodford, S Jampel & Partners, Max Fordham LLP, AG Case & Sons
Press
Baumeister (1983) Architects’ Journal (1982)

Play space for disabled children, their siblings and children from the local community.

Charlie Chaplin Adventure Playground

The playground is fully enclosed to offer respite and safety to the children. The geometry of the landscape is derived from clues in the existing situation – the street, the old pub, the new tall residential blocks, the neighbouring park and its paths. 

At the entrance is the playbuilding. From the playground, the building appears as a series of colourful pavilions and from the street the six small gables recall a little Victorian factory. At the epicentre of the playbuilding is a big kitchen with a curved counter overlooking the play space.

The building is light and open with alternate zones of low, dark ceilings with colourful horizontals that give a sense of protection and serenity, and high, brightly lit ceilings which give a sense of release. 

The drama of opposites, welcomed by all, is felt to be particularly important for disabled children. The structure offers almost infinite flexibility for future subdivision, as walls can be placed beneath any beam and across any bay.

Charlie Chaplin Adventure Playground