Play Value Assessment Tool

Play value should be at the heart of any play space design, but all to often it is an afterthought.

A Knowledge Transfer Partnership between Timberplay and Sheffield Hallam University sought to address this, creating a freely available tool devised to support the creation of better play spaces. We believe the standard of play provision would be universally better is this foundation was adhered to , so we decided to make this freely available – use it, share it, love it – Simply Play.

The Simply Play assessment is made up of ten themes of a successful play space which are drawn from this shared knowledge of play. These are:

The Physical Environment

The Human Environment



Elemental Play

Sensory Play





There are strong links between these and the Criteria for an enriched play environment outlined in Best Play: What Play Provision Should do for Children authored in 2000 by the Partnership of the National Playing Fields Association, PLAYLINK and the Children’s Play Council. The 14 months testing period saw themes added, removed, tested and rejected to finally arrive at the 10 above.


For more information, or to use the free tool follow the link below