first playleader. His work helped define the entire adventure play movement.
He was a member of the Danish
Movement.fighting against the Nazi's,
which meant that he
by the children at Emdrup.
It is noteworthy that Emdrup was started and
developed whilst Denmark was under Nazi occupation.
John Bertelsen wrote a diary of his early days of Emdrup (printed in ‘Adventure
Playgrounds’ by Arvid Bengtsson).
playground is an attempt to give the city child a substitute for the play
and development potential it has lost as the city has become a place where
there is no space for the child's imagination and play. Access to all
building sites is forbidden to unauthorized persons, there are no trees
where the children can climb and play Tarzan. The railway station grounds
and the common, where they used to be able to fight great battles and have
strange adventures, do not exist any more. No! It is now not easy to be a
child in the city when you feel the urge to be a caveman or a bushman".
Bertelsen, J. (1946)
John Bertelsen also coined the phrase "skrammologi"
or "junkology" for what is now known as adventure play.