Case Study Stephen Hawking School - Stephen Hawking originally contacted ESP Play back in February 2019 with an ambitious intention to transform their outdoor play areas. The playgrounds contained endless accessibility and design flaws which made using the playground a risk assessment nightmare for staff. The school had a very clear vision with independent learning and sensory experience at the core.

School: Stephen Hawking School

Type: Special Educational Needs (SEN)

Location:Tower Hamlets, London


Stephen Hawking School is dedicated to raising the standard of educational achievement for children between the ages of 2 and 11 years with severe or profound learning difficulties.

The school is committed to the development and delivery of high quality relationships with families and local community organisations to ensure that the children attending the school achieve their full potential and become respected and active members of the local community.

The Final Design

ESP Play worked with the school staff to understand the mobility needs of all the children and designed custom-made equipment to meet the unique learning and access needs of every child. A range of safe, sensory surfaces joined seamlessly to create a level, fully inclusive play area for the children’s wheelchairs and frames to easily access. Our free playground design service illustrated the school’s vision perfectly.

The Installation

Following the official go ahead from the school, ESP Play organised a pre-installation site meeting to assess the Central London site challenges and prepare risk assessments and method statements. The installation was arranged for the Summer holidays and took 4 weeks to complete. The project was completed ready for the children to return to school.

Phase Two

Due to the Success of the original project, Stephen Hawking School returned to ESP Play in July 2020 to redevelop their second playground which took place over the October half term of 2020.