KINGSTON has among the best playgrounds in the country - according to children in the borough.
Pupils in school years six, eight and 10 were answering the government's Tellus survey.
Of the respondents in Kingston, 67.3 per cent said their local parks and play areas were good or fairly good - against the national average of 54.1 per cent saying this.
The news delighted Hilary Garner, of Kingston Voluntary Action and chair of the Play Partnership.
"This is great news," she said. "Kingston has an excellent partnership working on play and the results of this survey show that our strategy has been a success.
"It is based on consulting young people and parents and involving young people in designing the play areas themselves.
"Research and consultation told us that families and children thought there were not enough play opportunities for young people aged eight to 13 and that more adventurous outdoor play provision was needed.
"Our approach has been to build natural landscaped play areas, and it is great to see that children are clearly happy with this."
The survey results come at the halfway stage of a two-year programme of building and renovation of 22 play areas across Kingston.
The borough successfully won bids for nearly £1.5million in funding from various organisations to do the work.
The percentage of children praising play areas has gone up by more than 10 per cent since the survey was carried out last year.
Next on the council's list of sites to get new or improved play areas at are the Cambridge Road Estate, Sheephouse Way, Alexandra Park and Moor Lane in Chessington, which will have specialist equipment for children with disabilities.
Kingston's play champion, Councillor Patricia Bamford, said: "To have achieved the top score in England and Wales for satisfaction with our parks and play areas is a measure of the hard work undertaken by the council and its partners to improve play provision, particularly opportunities for the older age groups.
"This is part of a broader strategy, as we believe that improving play and leisure opportunities for young people, particularly opportunities for them to be active in a positive way, will impact on their behaviour and their health.
"This is only the start, as we have more exciting improvements planned for the next year."