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Play Policy & Legislation

Ministerial Review of Play

Explore Play policy & legislation


Between 2019 and 2022, the Welsh Government undertook an in-depth and collaborative review of its play policy work. The review had two aims:

  • to assess the Welsh Government’s work relating to play policy
  • to help the Welsh Government shape how it develops and progresses the play agenda.

A cross-professional steering group of play and playwork specialists and policy officials from across the Welsh Government was set up to support the review.

The Welsh Government commissioned Children in Wales – through its Young Wales initiative – to consult with children across Wales about their experiences and thoughts on play. The views they expressed are discussed throughout the Ministerial Review of Play Steering Group report and in the accompanying background paper.

The Welsh Government tasked Play Wales with coordinating the writing of the report and background paper on behalf of the steering group. Play Wales was also commissioned to produce the children and young people’s version of the report.


Ministerial Review of Play Steering Group report

In February 2023, the Welsh Government published the steering group’s report. The report presents 15 key recommendations in relation to six themes identified in the review. It emphasises that there is an urgent need to implement these recommendations to improve opportunities for children’s play in Wales.

Ministerial Review of Play Steering Group background paper

The steering group report is informed by a background which provides key literature, reports on the impact of COVID-19 and the rationale for the recommendations.

A Review of Play in Wales – what it means for children and young people

In September 2023, the Welsh Government published a children and young people’s version of the Ministerial Review of Play Steering Group report. It provides an overview of what difference implementing the review’s recommendations will mean for children and young people in Wales.

This succinct and visual version lists what children and young people asked for as part of the consultation and in response what the steering group is asking the Welsh Government to do to make all this happen.

Welsh Government response

In October 2023, the Deputy Minister for Social Services, Julie Morgan MS responded to the recommendations in the Ministerial Review of Play steering group report.

The response explains how the Welsh Government intends to take forward, or exploring further, the recommendations and suggested milestones outlined in the steering group report. It also sets out the actions that will be undertaken to achieve the steering group’s anticipated results, along with a timescale for each milestone.

Ministerial Review of Play Steering Group Report – A Play Wales summary

In November 2023, Play Wales published a summary of the Ministerial Review of Play Steering Group Report. It sets out the context for the review – explaining the importance of play for children and emphasising the legal duty in Wales to protect and promote play. It also notes the importance of taking children’s views into account when assessing the sufficiency of their opportunities to play.

The summary gives a brief overview of the work carried out during the review – including capturing children’s views. It presents each of the six themed areas of work identified in the steering group’s review and the 15 recommendations made across these themes.

Publication Library

Our publications are aimed at everyone who has an interest in, or responsibility for, children’s play.

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