A Radcliffe-based playworker has become The Met’s first ‘supported artist’, and will be bringing her much-loved Pop-Up Play Shop back to the town’s centre on 2 dates over the Christmas holidays.
Suzanna Law founded Pop Up Adventure Play in 2010, “with a plan written on the back of a napkin” with her partner in the charity Morgan Leichter-Saxby, while they were both studying Playwork at Leeds Beckett University. Their first Pop-Up Play Shop took over an empty shop unit in Cardiff for 5 months, and since the pair have helped launch over 400 Pop-Ups in 30 countries.
The simple idea behind Pop-Up Adventure Play takes everyday unwanted materials like boxes, tubes, buckets and tubs to all sorts of places, and allows children a safe space to play and be creative with them.
Suzanna and The Met brought the Pop Up Play Shop to Radcliffe Plaza for a series of Saturdays over summer 2019, with an enthusiastic response from the parents and children who joined in. “The feedback was awesome” says Suzanna.
“Just seeing children’s faces light up when they realise that they can play with anything in the shop is a wonderful sight.”
The Pop Up Play Shop will return to Radcliffe on two dates over the Christmas holidays, with sessions on Monday 23 December and Saturday 4 January. Admission is always free, and the focus is on allowing children to be creative with what’s to hand in a safe and supportive place.
The Met’s CEO Victoria Robinson is delighted to have Suzanna and Pop Up Play as the venue’s first supported artist. “Suzanna’s enthusiasm and expertise have been brilliant to see in action in her hometown of Radcliffe.
“Her commitment to harnessing creativity and play in children to help improve people’s everyday life and experience is inspiring. We’re looking forward to seeing how we can work together more during 2020.”
Throughout the year Suzanna will continue to visit and collaborate with playworkers from across the world (as well as finishing her PHD) and thanks to the new relationship with The Met, according to Suzanna “I will be supporting the Pop-Up Play Shop in Radcliffe, helping my own community access open-ended play opportunities.
“I aim to recruit, train and support a bank of volunteers to help run the shop and keep this little space sparkling and open for the children of Radcliffe.”