Playgrounds in and near Loughton, Essex

As residents of Loughton we are lucky to have a large number of green spaces as well as Epping Forest on our doorstep. But what about playgrounds? Have you found all the playgrounds in Loughton and nearby?

While some of them are popular there are others which will be quieter if you want to avoid the crowds, although in nice weather you probably need to head to the forest and climb trees if you really want to have space to yourself.

If you are looking for something a bit more special find out which are the best playgrounds in London and Essex which are worth travelling to from Loughton.

Let me know if there are any I have missed any.

A climbing frame in a loughton playground with a girl going down a slide in school uniform
Loughton has 8 playgrounds

Playgrounds in Loughton

Traps Hill Playground (IG10 1HD)

Next to the library at the end of the High Street is probably the best known Loughton playground and is often busy. It was completed refurbished in 2016 and now has a great combination of apparatus for toddlers through to older children. There are multiple swings (including toddler swings, flat swings and a pendulum swing), a flat to the ground roundabout (suitable for wheelchairs) and climbing frames for toddlers and older children. Potentially the only thing missing is a slide for older ones (there is one small toddler slideO).
Parking (paid) is available in the car park next to it and there is sometimes a space on Traps Hill.
Council recommended age: 2 to 14

Swings at Traps Hill Playground in Loughton
Traps Hill Playground, Loughton

Jessel Green Playground (Colebrook Lane IG10 2HP)

This playground is on the Colebrook Lane side of Jessel Green. It has a slide, climbing frames and swings (including toddler, flat and supported). It is fenced off, but if children want more space to run around then there is lots of space on Jessel Green. The playground is at the top of a hill and the green area next to it is a great place for flying kites.
Street parking available.
Council recommended age: 2 to 14

Colebrook Lane Playground on Jessel Green Debden Loughton
Colebrook Lane/ Jessel Green Playground, Loughton

Westall Road Playground (IG10 2AF)

This playground has two toddler swings but all the rest of the equipment is generally better suited for children 5 years and upwards. The climbing frame with slide has big gaps on the side of the frame it isn't suitable for toddlers. There is also a roundabout, pendulum swing and overhead spinner.
Parking is easily available on roads around the green. This playground is near two primary schools and can get very busy after school.
Council recommended age: 2 to 14

Westall Road Playground near St John Fisher and Thomas Willingale Primary Schools Loughton
Westall Road Playground, Loughton

Newmans Lane Playground (IG10 1TN)

At the green space at the Rectory Lane end of Newmans Lane is a good playground for preschool to age 6 ish. This playground has two climbing frames (one better for preschoolers and one for slightly older children), 3 types of swing (toddler, junior and pendulum), a roundabout and a seesaw. There is a small amount of street parking on Newmans Lane.
Council recommended age: 2 to 14

Newmans Lane playground in Loughton
Newmans Lane Playground, Loughton

Monksgrove Playground (IG10 3LP)

This small playground on the Oakwood Hill Estate has a small play frame suitable for toddlers and preschoolers. It is overlooked by the surrounding properties and hidden away behind the buildings on the left soon after you turn into Monksgrove. There is street parking available.
Council recommended age: 2 to 6

Monksgrove playground on Oakwood Estate good for preschoolers

Roding Valley Recreation Ground Playground (IG10 3BS) 

This playground has been moved slightly and has all new equipment (it opened August 2023). The Roding Valley Recreation Ground is an often missed stretch of green space runs pretty much the length of Loughton from near the retail park and all the way to Buckhurst Hill. It is a flood plain and it does often get flooded in winter, which is the main reason they have moved the playground. It is now right next to the tennis courts with the entrance on the side of the park away from the river. The playground is near the Roding Road entrance and there are good paths from the carpark. 

The playground has a couple of climbing frames with slides (one for younger children, one for older ones), a seesaw, swings and roundabout. Some of teh equipment is 'accessible'.  The playground is near some hard courts and an outdoor gym. 

Parking is available in a small car park at the end of Roding Road and on side roads in the area.
Council recommended age (playground): 2 to 12
Council recommended age (outdoor gym): 14 upwards

The new roding valley recreation ground playground photo taken from the path outside the fence
The New Roding Valley Recreation Ground Opened August 2023

Roding Valley Recreation Ground Playground Roding Road Loughton
The Old Roding Valley Recreation Ground Playground now removed(Loughton)

Hillyfields Playground (IG10 2PX)

Described by the council as an “inclusive toddler multi-play unit” this mini playground has a slide and climbing frame suitable for young children. There is limited free street parking.
Council recommended age: 2 to 6

Hillyfields play area preschoolers Loughton
Hillyfields Playground, Loughton

Felstead Road (IG10 3BB)

This cute playground has a toddler climbing frame, swings, roundabout and seesaw. Unlike the rest of Loughton's playgrounds it is mostly grass based and may get muddy. There is some street parking on nearby roads.
Council recommended age: 2 to 12

Felstead Road playground Loughton Buckhurst Hill
Felstead Road Playground

Willingale Playing Fields (IG10 2DD)

Not a playground, but worth mentioning because there is outdoor gym equipment on this tucked away field accessible about halfway down Willingale Road (near Hereward Primary School) including balance beams, chest exerciser, leg press, skier, space walker and TRX pole.
Council recommended age: 14 upwards.

Playgrounds near Loughton

This is a list of all the playgrounds I can find within roughly a 15 minutes drive from Loughton. Some are just play areas while others have larger green spaces too. I haven't visited them all personally so please let me know if any changes are required to descriptions.

Playgrounds in Abridge

Pancroft, RM4 1BX
Community Play area.

Next to Abridge Village Hall, 39 Ongar Road, RM4 1UD
The Village Hall has a large free car park next to the playground which includes swings, climbing frames and other equipment. Outside the playground is a green space and small outdoor gym.

Playgrounds in Buckhurst hill

King's Place, IG9 5EA
Play equipment including a new slide added in 2020.

Roding Valley Recreation Ground, IG9 6BJ or IG9 6BN 
At the Buckhurst Hill end of this long green space is another playground (the Loughton one is mentioned above). The "Jeep" playground is great with lots of play equipment for all ages including swings, climbing frames, roundabouts and slides. The nearest roads to the playground are Rous Road, Roding Lane or Boxted Close. There is a footpath to the playground from Roding Lane soon after the Rous Road turning, but I haven't found nearby parking. It is a short walk away from the pond where there are lots of ducks and birds.

A great playground in Buckhurst Hill with lots of different pieces of play equipment including swings, play frames, bouncers and roundabouts
Playground at the Buckhurst Hill end of Roding Valley Nature Reserve

Playgrounds in Chigwell

Chigwell Row Play Area, Lambourne Road, IG7 6JU
This play area includes: swings, climbing frame and seesaw. It is walking distance from Lodge Close free car park.

Chigwell Station Green Playground, next to Chigwell Station
This playground has several climbing frames, slides, swings and seesaw. It is opposite the parade of shops on Chigwell High Road, near Chigwell station.

Hainault Forest Country Park Playground, Romford Road, Chigwell, IG7 4QN
A new playground opened in August 2023 which has a great tall slide for older children as well as role play areas for younger ones. Read my review of the new Hainault Forest playground here.

A toddler on a climbing frame heading towards a slide
Playgrounds near Loughton

Playgrounds in Epping

Frampton Road Playground, off Lindsey Street
A small playground including: swings, multi play unit including slide and a roundabout. There is also outdoor gym equipment for adults.

Ivy Chimneys Play Area, Ivy Chimneys Road, CM16 4EP
Multiple types of swing, climbing frame, seesaw, zipline and infinity bowl.

Lower Swaines Recreation Ground, CM16 5ER
This site currently has a number of climbing frames and swings, but a major redevelopment is planned.

Parklands, Coopersale
The playground includes: swings, slide, climbing frame 

Stonards Hill Play Area, Stonards Hill, CM16 4QF
As well as a good size playground Stonards Hill Recreation Ground has a skate park, cafe, toilets and car park.

Playgrounds in Chingford

(Information sourced from Waltham Forest's website)

Arnett Square Playground, Chingford Hall Estate
Under 7s and Under 12s play area

Chase Lane Park, York Road 
Under 7s and Under 12s play area and skate park.

Drysdale Park, Drysdale Avenue
Under 7s and Under 12s play area, Outdoor gym, hard court areas.

Memorial Park, Chingford Mount Road
Ornamental pond, tennis courts, under 7 play area, under 12 play area, free parking.

Ridgeway Park, The Ridgeway, Old Church Road
Under 7s and Under 12s play area, Outdoor gym, hard court areas. Miniature railway (runs Sunday afternoons in Summer, subject to Covid restrictions), toilets.

The Highams Park, Keynsham Avenue, Woodford Green/ Chingford
Under 7s play area, next to the lake. Part or a larger park.

Vincents Road playground, Vincent Road E4
Under 7s and under 12s play area

Closer up view of climbing equipment and ropes at Jessel Green playground Loughton
Jessell Green, Loughton

Theydon Bois Playground, Green Glade, CM16 7LY

This is a lovely little playground funded and run by local volunteers (unlike the rest of the playgrounds on this list which are run by Councils/ Districts/ Borough etc). Hidden away across the road from the duck pond on Theydon Green the Playground has several climbing frames, swings and a seesaw. You can donate to support the playground via their website.
There is parking around The Green, but with various time restrictions so check before parking.

Thornwood Playground, Parish Hall Common, Weald Lane CM16 6NB

A small playground with parking

Playgrounds in Woodford/ South Woodford/ Woodford Green

(Information sourced from Redbridge's website)

Churchfields Recreation Ground
Good size play area, street parking with some restrictions.

Elmhurst Gardens
Play area, tennis courts, landscaped green space

Lechmere Avenue Play Area
Play area

Onslow Gardens
Play area

Ray Park, Snakes Lane East 
A large park with tennis courts, full size football pitch, outdoor gym and play area. There is a cafe and toilets at James Leal Centre on site. Car parking available.

Rose Avenue Play Area/ Oakdale Play Area
Play area


  1. Such a great piece of work. I didn’t know about most of these!

    1. Thank you. I have visited 7 playgrounds today to take pictures, I’m exhausted 😂

  2. Which children play areas have toilets for them?

    1. I’ve said on the listings where there is a toilet, but generally the local playgrounds don’t have them. In Loughton Traps Hill does have one of those public toilet pod things, but I’m always a bit scared of them and have never used it. We have gone to Morrisons to use theirs though (about 5 minutes walk).
      Stonards Hill in Epping has a toilet at the cafe and a few of the playgrounds further away have toilets too. It’s definitely a challenge when visiting with younger children though.


Thanks for your comment (unless it's spam in which case, why?)