My opinion by Mercury reader Christian Smith: What is there for kids to do these days? Lots!!

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The question which I’ve heard so many times in this town is “what is there for the kids to do around here?” however I’ve always been doubtful as to whether it is worth pursuing the idea of public services for kids and teenagers. Being a teenager myself I feel that I have a true inside view on this, although some of what I say may not be particularly liked by people my age.

Now we’ve had the Skate Park and the Arc, and they have brought some kids out and provided them with something to do. But the problem is that what I see with people my age is that video games seem to win over a good game of football. It might be possible that I’m only saying this because I gave up video games a year or so ago, but I do believe that there is little benefit in them.

What is needed for a bit of fun is already here, grass and goalposts, tennis courts etc. I think that parents should be telling their kids to go and see if their neighbours’ kids are up for a game of football, cricket or in our current weather a snowball fight. These days it would be impossible for someone like me to round enough people up for a game of 5-a-side never mind a full on game.

More important than building things that are new for kids, is getting them to get out in the real world and enjoy themselves. Playing a game of sport or heading down to the park is free, whereas buying a video game is extortionate.

P.S. A note for any teenagers out there: when it warms up, anybody up for a game of crossbar challenge? The question which I’ve heard so many times in this town is “what is there for the kids to do around here?” however I’ve always been doubtful as to whether it is worth pursuing the idea of public services for kids and teenagers. Being a teenager myself I feel that I have a true inside view on this, although some of what I say may not be particularly liked by people my age.

Now we’ve had the Skate Park and the Arc, and they have brought some kids out and provided them with something to do. But the problem is that what I see with people my age is that video games seem to win over a good game of football. It might be possible that I’m only saying this because I gave up video games a year or so ago, but I do believe that there is little benefit in them.

What is needed for a bit of fun is already here, grass and goalposts, tennis courts etc. I think that parents should be telling their kids to go and see if their neighbours’ kids are up for a game of football, cricket or in our current weather a snowball fight. These days it would be impossible for someone like me to round enough people up for a game of 5-a-side never mind a full on game.

More important than building things that are new for kids, is getting them to get out in the real world and enjoy themselves. Playing a game of sport or heading down to the park is free, whereas buying a video game is extortionate.

P.S. A note for any teenagers out there: when it warms up, anybody up for a game of crossbar challenge?