Recognising the value of community-based engagement to support a planning application for a local development, property developer Hyde Martlet commissioned a place-making study to explore opportunities in Hove Park. Our concept and development revolves around the idea of installing games around the park. Most of the games have been designed so that no equipment is required and that there is an element of familiarity to each. Using historical influences and working with pupils from Hove Park School, to develop and test out our first thoughts, we arrived at the conclusion that a games trail with an element of riddle-solving would engage and connect the community and visitors to the park. The students learned about the importance of landmarks in helping people define, engage with and understand a place.
Each game incorporates an historical influence and a series of excellent riddles written by one of the Hove Park School pupils will direct a visitor to each location. Initial thoughts for games include sheep hopscotch, using a Sussex shepherds counting rhyme which works well with the rhythm of the game. (Gold)stone paper scissors is the traditional rock, paper, scissors game, but played with the feet – symbols showing the player where to place themselves in the game. A football target game where the players can make up their own rules and with narratives and facts that remember the Albion Goldstone ground (which was sited directly opposite). Wayfinding elements embedded in the ground would direct the trail-user to the games and thoughts for directing to public transport locations have also been considered.