Half term heaven

Berkshire Life - - Front Page - WORDS: Jan Ray­croft

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!

BUSHCRAFT SKILLS

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

PUMP­KIN PARTY

Wind­sor Royal

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

SPINE TIN­GLING

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

HAL­LOWEEN TEA

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

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