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Public notice:

Using the playground during Covid-19
Please avoid using the playgrounds and outdoor gyms when they are busy in order to maintain social distancing, and please adhere to the signage at the gates. All children must be accompanied by an adult.

Please bring your own hand sanitiser and use it before and after you have touched any surfaces in the playgrounds or outdoor gyms. For those using the outdoor gyms, please wipe down equipment after you have used it.

Please note: It is not possible to guarantee that playgrounds and outdoor gyms are secure from Covid-19 and visitors use them at their own risk.

Since the 1930s, children have been swinging, sliding and climbing in Gloucester Gate Playground, just to the east of London Zoo.

In 2019/20  the space underwent a complete transformation,that saw the old, flat and metal playground replaced with an accessible and modern space made from natural materials such as wood, rope, bark and willow, and interspersed with hedges, trees, flowers and grass.

The former, flat and cold metal playground.

New, natural and accessible playground.

  • The ambitious new design was inspired by the surrounding landscape, where mounds and mature trees mark all that remains of a 19th century hospital -St Katherine's Lodge- that was demolished after World War Two due to bomb damage.
  • The new playground is almost double the size of the former playground and offers a 50-metre zip wire, bespoke climbing equipment, and water play, as well as the customary swings, slides and sandpit of a traditional playground. Accessibility has been at the forefront of the design, and a wheelchair accessible roundabout and bridge features, as well as a wide slide and raised tables for water and sand play.
  • The project has been made possible thanks to a generous donation from the London Marathon Charitable Trust and a mix of public and private donations.

Key details

Age range

  • Suitable for children of all ages. The space is zoned so that children of a younger age have equipment suited to them in the centre and as they circle around the playground, the equipment becomes more challenging.


  • Swings, slides, roundabouts and climbing equipment made from natural materials
  • Dedicated areas for sand and water play (water play is currently not in use due to Covid-19)
  • 50-metre zip-line for those feeling extra brave (this is currently not in use)
  • Children's toilets including an accessible toilet
  • Baby change facilities in the disabled toilet
  • Picnic tables and seating areas

Opening times

January 10am-4pm

February 10am-5pm

March (GMT) 10am-6pm

March (BST) 10am-7pm

April 10am-7:30pm

May 10am-7:30pm

June 10am-7:30pm

July 10am-7:30pm

August 10am-7:30pm

September 10am-7pm

October (BST) 10am-6pm

October (GMT) 10am-5pm

November 10am-4pm

December 10am-4pm

The playground is closed all day on 25th December.

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