In a previous post Isle of Wight, I mentioned that I volunteer with The Girl's Brigade in their summer camp. This year instead of going to Kingswood for the week we booked Gibside Stables Bunkhouse. Living in the north east I'd never been to Gibside before so I was excited to go not only for that but because it was my cousin Charley's first time at camp.
Gibside is an 18th century landscape which now belongs to the National Trust, set a few miles away from Newcastle, surrounded by beautiful views, riverside walks, farm life, with many scenic paths for avid walkers, amongst all the scenery there is so much wildlife to see. 
Within Gibside there is;
  • a café with toilet facilities 
  • shop
  • small playground
  • flower and vegtable garden 
  • a play park with toilet facilities
  • low ropes.
  • a plant centre.

I mean looking at these no one can complain about staying here for a week, as it was the summer holidays Gibside itself did provide activities at the hub for the public and ourselves.
One activity we did privately was a night walk where a guide took us around Gibside showing us all the animals that live there. We saw many including birds, squirrels, sheep and we were very lucky to see some deers! They said as well as the bunkhouse there is a more secluded spot where people pay to watch the deers sometimes not spotting any at all and here we are just strolling around spotting them.
The girls loved seeing them.
One night the older girls came screaming into the common room saying there was a skunk in their bathroom, we checked it out there was no skunk, we insisted the UK didn't have any skunks, so on the tour they found out it was actually a badger another animal they were lucky to see.

Another activity they provided us with was firelighting, a guide took us to a remote spot which felt like forever walking to it, to teach the girls how to start a fire and once that's done to toast some marshmallows, the older girls who have been to previous camps had done this before, but a for a few it was their first time, it was great to see them achieve it.  For a while it was touch and go for the marshmallows, a down pour started just our luck, but being the professionals we are we started up the fire again, albeit with a little help from the real professional.

As we were there for a week, we also ventured out to near by activity centres;

An indoor and outdoor activity centre primarily for children but adults can join in too. Inside there is a massive inflatable course I was a bit jealous of the kids going on and once I noticed an adult having a go I was in there like a shot, felt like I was having a heart attack at the end I was knackered. There's also a jungle jim for the younger children, a skate park, archery cabin and a canteen section.
 Outside there is a wooden castle the kids can play in, a set of swings, a low ropes course, some chickens and birds.
Further back there is another field which has a tarzan swing, an old fire engine, a little course for buggies, a sand pit and what I can only say as a massive pillow in the ground that you bounce on? Whatever it's called it was fun aha.

Prudhoe Waterworld:
We went swimming for a few hours, I'm not a big fan of swimming in the UK I tend to avoid it, I hate feeling rushed to get changed, hate the chlorine in my hair can still smell it after I wash it and the pools are always too crowded, this occasion was no different except I was look after 10 kids.
When in the pool itself the girls enjoyed it they didn't want to leave there was a little jacuzzi, a big slide, every other hour the waves would come and that was pretty much it.

Lightwater Valley:
A popular theme park in North Yorkshire, full of roller coasters and rides for all ages. When I was in school all the good students at the end of the year got to go here, I was excited to go as school was probably the last time I went here, well over 10 years ago.
When we arrived we split off into two groups, the older girls came with me for the first half of the day then we met up with the youngers for the rest of it. The first ride we went on had to be the Ultimate as soon as the girls found out we were going here, they never shut up about going on it, once we got on it two of the girls cried as they didn't like it but then went straight back on it aha.
Other rides we went on was the Waltzer, Pirate Ship and the Big Swings, the big swings was the last of it for me as I started to feel nauseous. The little swings were the last one for all the girls as one spewed everywhere, during the ride, a poor lady got hit with some of it.

Broom House Farm:
The Farm is located in Durham and it pretty much was amazing, for both adults and children. It was such a crappy day weather wise but that didn't stop any of us from having a great time, as we pulled up we seen a bunch a lambs, sheep, cows there was also a shelter that houses a few pigs.

Piglets, how cute!

Without the animals technically it wouldn't be a farm but still enjoyable as there is also a Forest Adventure there. 

Within a few acres of trees there is plenty of things to do, including swings, pull a-long toboggan, climbing frames and tarzan swings. When you arrive you are given 3 sheets of paper, one has a list of animals and their foot prints all mixed up, when walking around you'll see tree stumps with prints printed on when then you're able to match up. Another sheet has a number of different shaped leaves, around the park you'll also see red clippers with stamps on in the shape of the leaves. Lastly, there is a general knowledge quiz, there are many information boards about nature and wildlife, the kids weren't really into the quiz but were with the others. On the back of the quiz there are pictures of fairies, there are a numerous amount of fairy doors around and you have to find there names. Once you've finished them you can trade your sheets in for bags of sweets at the café.

We had such a good week, I'm gutted I can't go to camp next year as I'm bridesmaid for my best friend perhaps the year after.

Have you been to any of these places?

No comments