It’s week one of school holidays for most people in Hampshire / Berkshire and I, like many of you have been looking for things to do in the local area. Don’t get me wrong, we will be watching lots of CBeebies and Netflix, but I want to try and get out and about, mostly for my own sanity, as two toddlers at home all day would drive me ever so slightly nuts! I thought it may be helpful for me to publish a little weekly guide of things I’ve discovered are happening in the area to help offer you some inspiration.
MONDAY 24th JULY:
Walks in Hampshire and Berkshire
Obvious, but after the horrible weekend rain it might be a good opportunity to get some fresh air before the bad weather returns (you know it will!). If you need some suggestions for walks in the area I can highly recommend these books:
The Tiger Who Came to Tea @ The Corn Exchange, Newbury 1.30pm (on 25/26 July too)
The Tiger Who Came to Tea is showing at the Corn Exchange today for ages 4yrs +
Love Island Final – 9pm ITV2!
That’s right, they’ll be parties across the land. But who’s going to win, and who will take the money?
TUESDAY 25th JULY:
The weather app says: a sunny day, 24 degrees
Tuesday should be the best day, weather-wise, this week so I’m planning for lots of outdoor time to take advantage of the sun. Flicking through through my trusty Walks of Berkshire Book I quite fancy heading out on the morning for a stroll with the kids. I need to be in Hungerford so there is a walk along the canal that looks amazing. Other things happening in our area include:
Mess Around Berks & Wilts – Outdoor Messy Play, Hungerford Rugby Club, 10.30am
A summer beach themed play session with lots of sand and water suitable for 6 months – 5 year olds. You do need to book in advance.
West Berkshire Mums Meet Up – Cobbs Play Barn, Hungerford, 10 – 11.30am
Meet other mums and carers in the area. Only £1 per child and free entry for adults. Play, have a chat and coffee but make sure you sign up in advance as space is limited.
Summer Bake with Me @ The Real Macaroon Company, Newbury 10.30am & 2pm
A good activity for children aged between 7-12 years old. This delightful cafe/bakery will teach your little ones to bake a delicious selection of macaroons. Classes limited to 6 so book ahead if you are interested.
Play a Game of Tennis! – Newbury Tennis Club
If the sun is out, why not head to your local tennis court for a fun hit around with the children. There are public tennis courts splattered around Berkshire/Hampshire but if you want to improve your skills and need coaching then try Newbury Tennis Club who welcome all ages. On Tuesday evenings they also host social sessions so you can just turn up and play.
WEDNESDAY 26th JULY:
The weather app says: 20 degrees but the rain is back!
Luckily there are some good indoor activities on offer today. Mind you, children enjoy splashing around in puddles so don’t let me say stay indoors!
Finkley Down Farm launch their Summer Spectacular – with a timetable of daily events both indoors and out with children entertainers and the usual sheep racing, pony rides, rabbit handling and more!
Wise Owls @ Shaw House 10am – 3.30pm £2 per child (4-11 years but open to other ages too)
You can drop into Grade II listed Shaw house for some crafty fun making owls. They also have a wildlife trail so bring a picnic and make a day of it!
Animal Experience @ The Nature Discovery Centre, Thatcham, 10am – 4pm. Bookings essential
Meet the the keepers from ‘The Animal Experience who will be bringing a selection of animals which will include Meerkats and African Hedgehogs – sure to be a hit! £4pp, bookings essential
THURSDAY 27th JULY:
The weather app says: 19 degrees and cloudy
Day in Newbury
Thursday is always a good day to go into town for a look round. Newbury has some fabulous shops and the sales are still going strong. For the kids there is ice cream, Victoria Park, or you can feed the ducks by the canal. There are lots of kiddie friendly restaurants. The Newbury is offering a special of free pizza for children, otherwise there is Pizza Express, Nelson’s Diner or Bill’s. You can always visit Newbury Museum and see if you can complete their free fun trail (ask at reception). The Market will be on and I can definitely recommend the bread stand as well as the veggies sold here.
There are some good family films showing this week including Cars 3, Despicable Me 3 and Spider Man with some daytime showings.
If you have your tickets than you will no doubt be heading to this family friendly festival in Dorset today. Have a blast!
These open session are available to children aged from 2 years old and will offer them the opportunity to try pony riding. There are several session throughout the day and they cost £25pp. Bookings essential.
FRIDAY 28th JULY:
The weather app says: another cloudy day!
The theme today is cave art and your little ones will have the opportunity of painting a
cave painting on a clay tile using twigs, feathers and other Stone Age-inspired painting equipment. Dress for mess! Disposable aprons will be provided. £2 per child. For 4-11 year olds but younger and older children are welcome. No need to book, drop in.
After a crazy week you deserve a relaxing tea and cake, I’ve highlighted some of my favourite places in the area here. If you are going to the Discovery Centre, the Pineapple Cafe would be an excellent add-on.
Your little ones can see what’s living at the bottom on the pond and learn more from the team. Costs £4 pp and bookings are essential.
Day Trip to London
Waterloo is partly closing in August and this will affect trains from Whitchurch/Basingstoke. The Newbury Paddington line will be unaffected, but expect it to get busy. Now is perhaps a good opportunity for some sale shopping and a day trip into London to visit some of its fabulous museums. In my view the best being the V&A, History and Science Museums in Knightsbridge.
Have a great week everyone, do let me know what you are up to!