Last Thursday we were invited to Maidstone, to be one of the first to play at the new Little Street play centre. Open now, the new centre is located in the Royal Star Arcade, right in the middle of the town centre, making it easily accessible by car, public transport or foot if you live close enough!
Created with little people (aged up to 8) in mind, Little Street Maidstone features a supermarket, construction site, police station, theatre, medical centre and a whole lot more - a typical town all scaled down for little ones; carefully designed and filled with props to give a fun and educational play experience.
My two (aged 3 and 20 months) were amazed from the second we walked in. The fire truck was of course the first stop, quickly followed by a shop in the supermarket - although the trolleys in there quickly become popular. I loved the attention to detail in every area, and that as well as toys for each themed section, there was also costumes to dress up with too.
One of the best things about Little Street is the educational benefit. Role play in children is hugely important for their development. Helping with language skills, problem solving and their understanding of themselves and others.
Little Street was also designed with input from Early Years Practitioners, who have incorporated other learning opportunities such as shapes, colours and numbers. Indiana (3) especially loved being a postman, and had no idea she was learning numbers and colours as she found where to post the letters.
All play sessions have a limited number of spaces, so the space never feels too crowded. There are 4 sessions daily at:
09:30 - 11:00
11:30 - 13:00
13:30 - 15:00
15:30 - 17:00
After each session is finished the staff get to work tidying up, putting every last toy back to where they belong. This means that every session starts with the rooms ready to be discovered again. This is brilliant as the items really do end up all over the place!
There is a seating area with plenty of tables, so you can sit and watch your little ones play - although I did find I wanted to be in there playing as much as they did! The wall is low enough to see into the rooms, and most can be seen from this area which I think is great. There's a little cafe too which sells hot drinks for parents, as well as healthy treats for little ones.
Overall I was hugely impressed with our visit. Everything was thought of, even down to the little details such as steps in the toilets for little ones and gates to keep them safely in the play area. I would definitely recommend a visit - you can book onto a session here. Just don't forgot your socks!
Watch my vlog from our visit below!
Disclosure - We received our entry free in charge in exchange for our review