Climbing Frames History – World’s first slide

It’s Wednesday, the day otherwise known as hump day. But today we are re-christening it slide day. Slides are the much loved, much sought after, principal feature on all our climbing frames. We’ve witnessed it with our own eyes. Children run out into the garden and the first thing they do on their brand new swing set is climb up the rockwall or ladder and zoom down the slide.

We spotted these fantastic images recently of the world’s first children’s slide, or the nearest thing to resemble a children’s slide. It shows just how far outdoor play equipment has come! Unlike the bright and colourful plastic slides our climbing frames feature this one was made out of planks of wood. That can’t have been too kind on the bottom. What about the splinters? Ouch.

The play equipment was built in 1922 at Wicksteed park in Kettering, Northamptonshire. This was the first park of it’s kind. Initially girls and boys had separate slides and weren’t allowed to slide on the same one. We also found a brilliant picture of a plank swing. Perhaps an early version of our more compact glider swing. The clever man that we can thank for all the sliding fun is Charles Wicksteed who originally built the slide for his own park but later went on to sell slides across the globe.

Our climbing frames may be made out of premium cedar wood but we promise the slides will remain plastic. We sell swing sets with straight wavy slides, curved slides and tubular slides. Children can zoom down the slide whilst being kept safe by high railed sides and flattened out bottoms. It’s hard to believe children could slide a few centimetres on wooden planks.

Wonder what the next 90 years will bring in play equipment advancement?

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