Policy for Play is managed and edited by Adrian Voce OBE, a writer, trainer and consultant specialising in the politics of children’s play.
After a long career in children’s play, special educational needs and residential care, Adrian Voce established and grew two of the most successful and influential play organisations in recent years; London Play and Play England.
Under Adrian’s leadership from 1998-2004 London Play secured policy commitments for children’s play from the Mayor of London as part of the overarching London Plan and was then commissioned by the Mayor to draft strategic planning guidance for the London boroughs. During Adrian’s six years at the helm, London Play also established a number of successful independent play associations in the London Boroughs and developed the gold standard for quality assurance in staffed play provision in England: Quality in Play.
As chair and then (from 2004) director of the Children’s Play Council at the National Children’s Bureau, Adrian led the successful campaign to secure £155m for play from the national lottery through the 2006 Children’s Play Initiative. This enabled the establishment of Play England to work with local authorities and their partners – building on the London model – to plan strategically for more and better play provision across the country.
Adrian was then the national government’s main advisor on the £235m Play Strategy, for which Play England became the national delivery partner – again working with every local authority in England to create around 3,000 new play areas and 30 staffed adventure playgrounds as well as establishing new benchmarks for planning, design and risk management in children’s free play provision.
Adrian was awarded an OBE for services to children in 2011.
Adrian is now working as a freelance writer, trainer and consultant, specialising in the politics of children’s play and how to secure public policy commitments for its provision as an integral part of the public realm. He is a member of the core group of the European Network of Child-Friendly Cities and on the organising committee of the bi-annual international Child in the City Conference.
When he is not working Adrian can often be found enjoying some of the fruits of his labours in London’s parks and playgrounds with his two young sons, Eran and Theo (who have kindly agreed for their images to grace this site).