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Risk Agency


26 August 2016 10:00

UNDER EMBARGO UNTIL 31 August 2016 17:00


On Wednesday 31st August, The Beyond Boundaries Partnership, A social mobility initiative aimed at young people in regeneration areas, launches ‘The rebuilding of the Ark’ at Tottenham’s Somerford Grove Adventure Playground, with local MP David Lammy.

As the country struggles to grapple with its housing crisis, the rush to regenerate neighbourhoods all too often sees large scale investment pass local young people by. Five years on after the Tottenham riots, ‘Beyond Boundaries’ is doing something different; taking the long view by building skills and increasing opportunities for young people living in Tottenham’s Northumberland Park, and seeking to create future pathways into education and employment.

Locally anchored by Haringey Play Association and delivered by youth charity Risk Agency, Beyond Boundaries was formed by Architects HTA Design and regeneration consultants Newman-Francis and builds on activities started in 2012 in the area.

‘As architects and designers we know that regeneration is about people as well as buildings and place-making and we are working with partners to help enable social mobility in areas like Tottenham that are earmarked for physical transformation.’ Mike De’Ath, HTA Design LLP

‘Somerford Grove Adventure Playground is one of few places in this fast changing city that really reflects and supports its wealth of diversity. Without the trust Haringey Play Association hold in this neighbourhood there’s no way we could have done this project’ Huan Rimington, Risk Agency.

New life for the ‘Living Ark’

On 31 August, 20 local young people recruited from the Adventure Playground aged 9 to 20 will graduate from ‘Beyond Boundaries’ latest scheme; the reconstruction of the Living Ark at Somerford Grove. Over the summer holidays, the team re-purposed and rebuilt the structure, which started life as a Bill Dunster designed eco-classroom at a Muswell Hill school. Material from the old building, stored in various containers for several years, was unpacked and used to reconstruct the Ark over 12 sessions where children learned about design and construction. It has been transformed into a new play structure and performance space to benefit hundreds of local children in an area of intense deprivation. Collectively the young people have achieved something they never imagined they could do – and learned many vocational and life skills in the process.

Quote from young person involved - Rhiann Grant, Tottenham
“It’s fun using the sledge hammer and getting to hit things, I’ve learnt to be more independent to make & build things. This playground is important to me and I realise I’m lucky as not everyone in the world has such a great place to play”

Quote from Sereena Keymatlian – Director Haringey Play Association
“The role of a Playworker is to support all children & young people in the creation of a space in which they can play”(Playwork principles) building dens and construction have always been key activities at Somerford Grove Adventure Playground. Working with a real design & build team is a great opportunity for the children who regularly attend our Adventure Playground.


Journalists are invited to the Beyond Boundaries launch and project graduation at 4pm Wednesday 31st August, Somerford Grove Adventure Playground, Park Lane Close, London N17 0HL.

The event is invite only, please contact Sereena Keymatlian on 07807 100 189 or email to confirm attendance.

The project was funded by generous donations from organisations in the housing and regeneration sector as well as private individuals.


Young people in regeneration areas rarely have the awareness or capacity to benefit from the opportunities created by investment in the built environment. Even the brightest often lack the family, social or education networks that feature profoundly in accessing careers and professions. Regeneration can take 10, 15 years or even longer. In this time a child can start and leave education , indeed multiple generations of young people may grow up oblivious or unable to access jobs beyond contractor and contract related programmes, mostly aimed at trades and site based work. 'Beyond Boundaries' is an initiative started by HTA Design LLP and Newman Francis to collaborate with local charities to work with children before and throughout their school career, creating opportunities for engagement, work experience, further education and ultimately work.

We are realistic about timescales and intend small, achievable steps towards an ambitious outcome, developing solid relationships with organisations that know young people best, trying out concepts and ideas, gaining confidence in the basic premise and our ability to fundraise and deliver. The biggest contribution we can make is through opening our networks to kids, fundraising and collaborating with more established charities to deliver a joined up programme.

‘Wouldn't it be amazing to know that we helped a child from a regeneration area to grow and use their talents to deliver future housing and regeneration projects!’


Risk Agency was set up in 2014 by award-winning company Adventure Playground Engineers (APES) in response to young people’s lack of meaningful opportunities to access the capital’s extensive construction industry. The charity turns the traditional apprenticeship model on its head by putting young people in control of bold and ambitious building projects. By taking the lead on real projects with Risk Agency’s support, users develop their vocational, professional and leadership skills, enabling them to fulfil their potential.


Established in July 2000, Haringey Play Association (HarPA) provides and assists in the provision of play & community facilities for children aged 0-15yrs, families & local residents. We work closely with those who experience social and economic deprivation and aim to improve the lives of young people and their families by supporting their physical, emotional, mental health & well-being. HarPA runs our award-winning Somerford Grove Adventure Playground and Community Project and provides play services, advocacy, advice, information as well as training on Playwork & working with young people. Our Adventure Playground, Stay & Play, Girls group, Bike project & Cook & Eat sessions have attracted 1,073 predominantly hard-to-reach local residents.

The vision of the Haringey Play Association (HarPA) is to see every local child have access to high quality, cost effective play opportunities. Our work is driven by the need to give a powerful voice to children’s play so that awareness and understanding is raised about its role as a fundamental part of the education, development and welfare of children. We develop and support a diverse range of children’s play opportunities and linked projects that are stimulating, challenging and contribute to tackling a range of multiple social and economic deprivation in the Northumberland Park area of Haringey.


HTA Design LLP is a design consultancy working in the housing and regeneration sector and founder of ‘Beyond Boundaries’. They have been active in Tottenham for many years and helped deliver the T2020 Hub centre in 2012. In 2015 HTA Design team lead two sketch drawing workshops at the Adventure Playground and over the past year have built up a strong relationship with Haringey Play Association.


NewmanFrancis is a regeneration consultancy committed to building strong communities. We aim to empower individuals and community organisations, and enable them to shape the transformation of their neighbourhood. We have been involved with young people in Tottenham since 2011. Through our Chartered Institute of Housing accredited training programme – Neighbourhood Workers – we have supported young people to develop skills and access employment opportunities. It was a recognition that we could, and should, be doing more to support the youth of Tottenham to benefit from the regeneration of their area that led us to partner with HTA Design to create Beyond Boundaries.


Sereena Keymatlian 07807 100 189

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