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Case Study: Backwell Junior School Trim Trail Upgrade - Bristol

Enhancing Outdoor Play Spaces at Backwell Junior School

Bristol, UK

Trim trail


Backwell Junior School's Outdoor Play Revolution

A little while ago, Signet Play helped Backwell C of E Junior School, Bristol with a mammoth playground transformation project. The goal was to completely replace their old, outdated playground equipment and install a brand new, engaging trim trail and clamber castle - complete with brand-new safety surfaces - and completely transform their outdoor play space.

Project Details

Revamping Outdoor Play Areas with a Modern Twist

The project began with the removal and disposal of the existing trim trail and safety surface, giving us a clean slate to work with. We were also able to remove an outdated steel tower play frame, and replace it with a state-of-the-art wooden clamber stack. Crafted from sustainably sourced timber, this eco-friendly replacement not only enhances the aesthetic appeal of the playground but also offers a safer outdoor play environment. The wooden clamber stack is impressively sturdy, creating a strong and durable structure that can handle the rough and tumble of daily play. Its strength, combined with the natural resilience of the material, ensuring an outdoor play feature that will last for a long time, keeping its quality intact. This makes it a fantastic and environmentally friendly choice for the school's outdoor play area.

Working with schools to design a playground suitable for a range of ages is one of our most common challenges. Just like the children who use it, every playground is different and what might work for EYFS-age children might not hold the same appeal for the Year Sixes preparing for their transition to secondary school. We were able to provide a range of versatile equipment that can be adapted to suit children at every stage of their school journey, and many different play styles and personality types. 

Client's Needs and Objectives

A Focus on Safety and Engagement

Backwell Junior School needed a playground that was not only safe but also stimulating for children of varying ages. The old equipment no longer met these needs effectively. Our solution was to design and install equipment that would encourage physical activity, creativity, and social interaction, all within a safe and well-monitored environment.

Trim trail

Implementation Process

Efficient and Safe Installation

Before our team could begin installing the new play equipment, they first had to remove the existing ones. A 28 metre trim trail was removed, along with an outdated steel climbing frame. Once those were out of the way, the team were also able to remove the ageing astro-turf and soft pour rubber, giving them a blank slate to start building. 

Safety and Compliance

Adhering to Top Safety Standards

Playground safety surface

Given the high-flying nature of the new clamber stack, safety was also a priority, both in terms of the removal and installation process while our team was onsite, and also for the children who would be using the equipment. Special attention was given to the installation of the new rubber mulch and soft pour safety surfaces, ensuring every new element adhered to the highest safety standards. Selected due to their superior shock absorption, these materials help absorb impact when running and jumping, reducing stress on growing joints and softening the landing from any trips or falls. We also upgraded the steel feet for both the trim trails and the clamber stack, ensuring robust stability and longevity. 

Impact and Feedback

A New Era of Outdoor Play at Backwell Junior School

The transformation of the playground has been met with enthusiasm and joy from both staff and students, and was a perfect way to celebrate a brand new school year. It not only meets the current needs of the school community, but the sturdy, environmentally friendly materials used in construction mean that it will be enjoyed by many more children over the years. 


A Lasting Impact on Backwell Junior School

This project at Backwell Junior School marks a significant step in enriching the school's outdoor play environment. The new playground not only meets the current needs of the school community but also sets a precedent for future developments. It stands as a testament to our commitment to creating safe, fun, and educational outdoor spaces.


Explore the potential of playground equipment in fostering physical development in young children. Start with a free site survey, assessing your available space and resources. Involve the children in the design process, and remember to prioritize safety and inclusivity. Share your experiences and innovations in obstacle course design with your community. Together, let’s create engaging, dynamic, and safe environments where our youngest learners can thrive physically, cognitively, and emotionally.

Contact Information

If you’ve been inspired by the work we’ve done, why not get in touch and see how we can help you? Book a site visit or give our friendly team a call on 01275 244139!


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