Thursday, 5 March 2015
"Bounce of Death" Public Information (1976)
In 1976 Scarfolk council was accused of unnecessarily endangering children's lives. In addition to placing municipal bouncy castles and trampolines in close proximity to pylons and electricity substations, the council also positioned roundabouts, swings and slides mere inches from high cliffs, busy railway tracks and motorways.
An investigative BBC television documentary series alleged that all the recreational areas had been intentionally placed within walking distance of underfunded orphanages and schools attended by working-class children. But the council was insistent: "The placement of the playgrounds is purely coincidental. As for potential hazards, how a child interacts with recreational community equipment is the responsibility of the parent, guardian, teacher or abductor". It also launched the poster campaign, as seen above.
The matter was raised again three years later when it was revealed that the play areas, when connected by straight lines on a map, resembled an occult symbol that had long been associated with pagan child sacrifice. This time the council responded by dismantling the children's playgrounds. However, it blatantly replaced them with infant recycling centres, a move that was welcomed by those who had opposed the vast numbers of children going to waste during a period when there was a shortage of leather for ceremonial masks.