Art, Play & Environment (APE) Project – bringing iconic St Paul’s playground back to life

The Art, Play & Environment (APE) Project organises open-access play and activity opportunities to enhance the lives of children. Set up in 2007, APE provides stimulating and challenging experiences in a safe open space where children and young people can feel valued and supported.  APE’s activities include open-fire cooking, arts and crafts, sports, a sensory room and outdoor play that are designed to promote teamworking, communication and creative problem-solving.

APE also runs sessions for children with disabilities, which focus on improving coordination and developing body awareness. By exploring what they can do, confidence and self-esteem is improved for the children who take part, which in turn can help to break down stereotypes and stigma around disability.

In 2017, the APE Project took over from Bristol City Council the management of the St Paul’s Adventure Playground, which has served the community since the 1970’s.

Unfortunately, in April 2020, APE’s adventure playground was extensively damaged by an arson attack. Through a community crowdfunding campaign and charity support, APE was able to rebuild the playground, reopening it in September 2020.

In January 2021, APE requested funding from SMV towards the purchase of a disabled-friendly enclosed slide. The stainless-steel tunnel slide will be one of the biggest and highest in the South West, and would enhance the activities offered to children, especially at the popular Saturday morning and after-school sessions for those with disabilities and learning difficulties. The slide is now in the final stages of being installed and APE are looking forward to welcoming all its children and their families to the playground in Spring 2022.

The slide is being installed and is due to be opened in Spring 2022