30/10/2009 09:04 GMT | Updated 22/05/2015 10:12 BST

Parents Banned From Playgrounds - Has The World Gone Mad?

A council has banned parents from two playgrounds because they have not had Criminal Records Bureau checks, it has been reported.

Watford Borough Council has apparently written to parents and carers saying that if they wanted to go in the council-run adventure playgrounds, they would have to be supervised by vetted playworkers.

So, says the council, it has no choice but to ban parents and carers from the areas.

Is this the most bonkers thing you've heard all week?

The council says its actions are no different to those taken by other groups such as Brownies and Cubs.

However the move has been described as a "sick joke".

Richard Harrington, the Conservative prospective parliamentary candidate for Watford, told the BBC: "The council has made the decision that parents are no longer allowed to play with their children in the play areas and that children will be cared for by 'qualified and police vetted play rangers'.

"It's a sick joke. This is a case of creating problems where there are none."

Dorothy Thornhill, the mayor of Watford, admitted the letter was a "sledgehammer to crack a nut" but told the BBC: "Councils are in the front line and vilified if they don't take these sorts of measures."

I think she's going to find that the council is actually vilified FOR taking these sorts of measures.

The mayor said the two playgrounds were a special case. She said: "This is not a playground we're talking about but a unique gated and fenced facility where quite risky and challenging activities take place."

She also told the BBC that parents staying at the playgrounds had distracted staff from supervising the children, leading to a series of incidents. Which sounds a bit odd.

A council statement said: "If parents aren't happy leaving their children - there are lots of other options open to them." In other words, if you don't like it, you can lump it.

Is there any sense behind this decision? Am I missing something here?

Source: BBC