Half term heaven
7 great events to keep them happy
Come rain or shine, we have some great ideas to keep both you and the kids sparkling during the break
from school... with a little learning thrown in!
It’s often more difficult to find new activities to do with older children, but this one at the Nature Discovery Centre, Thatcham, will introduce you and youngsters aged from 12 to bushcraft skills, including foraging, fire lighting and basic green woodworking.
It runs from 10.30am to 2.30pm on Saturday, 27 October. No experience is required but children must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. Book in advance.
£ The cost is £15 per person. bbowt.org.uk
Shopping has a pumpkin carving workshop and competition, plus children’s Halloween fancy dress competition on Saturday, 27 October. Events run from 1pm to 4pm, you simply have to complete an entry form by 3pm to enter the fancy dress section, with judging of pumpkins (free while stocks last) from 3.30pm.
£ Free windsorroyalshopping. co.uk
TIME TO SPARKLE
The LEGOLAND fireworks displays at Windsor are always sensational – and a big draw, so it’s wise to book in advance. This year the shows take place on
20, 21, 26 and 27 October. The resort is also running its Brick or Treat event from 18 October to 1 November, so for those into the Halloween spirit it’s a chance to join in spook-tacular activities alongside the rides.
£ From £47 per person in advance, £60 on the day. legoland.co.uk
We’re heading outdoors again, this time to Woolley Firs at Cherry Garden Lane in Maidenhead, with The Berks, Bucks & Oxon Wildlife Trust for their Help a Hedgehog sessions on 24 and 25 October, running from 10am to 2pm each day.
You’ll find out about your local hedgehogs and make a pine cone hedgehog to take home. Warm up with a hot drink after exploring the woodland. Booking essential, the event is most suited to those aged four to 10, but younger and older siblings and friends are welcome.
BACK TO SCHOOL
Until 24 October you and children over five can step back in time to discover what it was like to learn the ‘3Rs’ in a Victorian schoolroom, complete with a determined teacher! Reading Museum’s reconstructed classroom in the historic Abbey Gateway provides a unique 45-minute experience, with ‘lessons’ starting at 11am and 2.30pm each day.
You can turn up on the day, but we’d advise booking in advance as just 35 places are available per session. The museum’s Window Gallery also provides a great way to get under-fives interested in history with a story-telling session every Wednesday from 10.30am, using objects from the collection.
£ Events are free, but book to avoid disappointment. readingmuseum.org.uk
This one keeps the half term crew happy while also providing a pick-me-up for those looking after them. Oakley Court Hotel has a Halloween Afternoon Tea for children with some spooky treats. Best of all there’s an adults’ version complete with glass of champagne. And while you’re enjoying that, the children can take part in a Halloween Trail, following clues to find letters hidden around the hotel. Available between 26 and 31 October, 2pm to 5pm.
£ The children’s tea is £17.50 with trail included, while adults pay £41.50. oakleycourt.co.uk
SCENERY AND WILDLIFE
Basildon Park’s last seasonal family Friday walk led by volunteers and rangers is at 11am on 26 October, but half-term children’s trails run from 20 to 28 October.
At Cliveden the annual Halloween trail allows youngsters to look for the 10 species of bats on the estate, solving spooky challenges along the way. The trail runs from 20 to 28 October, 10.30am to 2.30pm.
£ Just £4 for children, supervising adults free. bbowt.org.uk
£ Basildon Park trails, £2. Cliveden, £3 per child, plus usual admission charges to the estate. nationaltrust.org.uk