This site is managed by Linden Groves, a qualified landscape historian and mum-of-three with a determination to give the historic outdoors a small place in every child’s heart.


Take a look at some of the playful things that Linden has done:

  • Consultant for English Heritage to devise play and interpretation offer for families at Battle Abbey and Walmer Castle.
  • Consultant for Chiswick House on approaches to children's play.
  • Groundbreaking schools workshops' at Warley Woods in the Black Country on researching the historic park and applying heritage values and significance.
  • Teaching at the University of Oxford (Rewley House) on engaging, children, families and excluded groups.
  • Article in Historic Gardens Review on the surprising similarities between Peppa Pig World and the Capability Brown landscape at its home in Paultons Park.
  • Workshop for English Heritage property staff on ways of approaching children's provision in their gardens.
  •  ‘Children in Gardens’ – research report for the National Trust on ways in which children played historically in their parks and gardens, and how this could be used to inspire visitor experiences today.
  •   ‘A  History of Playgrounds in Public Parks’ – research report for English Heritage on the development of playgrounds.
  • Trustee of the Wicksteed Charitable Trust, helping to run Wicksteed Park as one of the most important places in the story of children's play worldwide.
  •  Play Facilities’ - Planning Conservation Advice Note for The Garden History Society, giving guidance on how to minimise the detrimental effects of play equipment on sensitive landscapes.
  • 'History of Children's Play in the Royal Parks' research report for the Royal Parks Agency.
  •  ‘Beyond the Playground’ – an influential campaign for The Garden History Society to inspire garden owners and managers to take new approaches to child visitors. 
  • Successful children's play sessions in historic gardens from Strawberry Hill to Burgess Park to Fenton House to engage children with historic designed landscapes, as Hahahopscotch.
  • Authored article on children's play in historic gardens open to the public for English Heritage's Conservation Bulletin
  •   ‘Child’s Play’ – article for international magazine Historic Gardens Review on Charles Wicksteed, the pioneer of children’s play equipment. 
  • Play consultant for the Wicksteed Park Conservation Management Plan, 2012 (Sarah Couch Historic Landscapes).
  • Views article – article for the National Trust’s in-house journal, setting out a new way of approaching children’s visitor experiences. 
  • Articles of play ideas for Ham & High newspaper's parenting pages.
  • Headed an award-winning project to establish a family gardening ethos at an urban school (‘Award of Merit’ in the Sunday Telegraph/Conservation Foundation ‘Gardening Against the Odds’ Awards).(http://www.hollickwoodschool.org/gardenersneedyou.php)
  • Schools workshops to introduce London children to John Evelyn and his 17th century garden at Sayes Court.
  • Produced Experiencing Arcadia, with Clare Hickman, to encourage a more immersive approach to garden visits using digital media.


Linden is currently working on a book on the history of playgrounds, for the University of Liverpool Press.



Got an idea?

Please do get in touch, via linden@lindengroves.co.uk

Recommend this page on:

Children’s play: past, present, future
Click here to download Linden's article for National Trust's Views magazine on approaches to children's play
Adobe Acrobat document [1.7 MB]