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FREE Issue No. 56 May/June 2014

Party On Down! Party Feature

Party Directory

What's On at Half-Term

Summer Camps Taster


Open Days

The Herts magazine with the information young families want


From your Editor…

In this issue:

Hello and welcome to our May/June issue. As we head full speed towards the summer we bring you a taster of some of the fantastic summer camps that are on offer. Whether children want to be sporty, dramatic, arty or entrepreneurial or to get into the great outdoors and learn some wicked survival skills, get wet or stay dry - it’s being offered somewhere! A child’s birthday is a delightful occasion in the rough and tumble of family life and it is something that we all look forward to; but when it comes to ‘the party’ a little inspiration is always welcome. Take a look at the Party Feature for hints and tips and if your child’s birthday is later in the year keep hold of this issue for when you need it. Before we reach the summer there’s the next Half-Term break – fear not – help is at hand just dip into our What’s On pages for ideas. Go to for more events and activities throughout May and June.

News & Views: 4 Party Feature: 6 Summer Camps Taster: 10 Family Matters: 13 What’s On Half-Term: 14 School Open Days: 16 July/August deadline: 4th June Next Issue: Summer Activities


© Handmademedia Where are we? Baldock, Bishops Stortford, Borehamwood, Chorleywood, Harpenden, Hatfield, Hemel Hempstead, Hertford, Hitchin, Kings Langley, Knebworth, Letchworth, Radlett, St Albans, Stevenage, Ware, Welwyn GC. Pick it up from cafes, playgroups, nurseries, schools, activity groups, selected shops, surgeries, leisure centres and libraries. Get in touch to request copies for your venue.

Subscribe to get Families Herts by post for just £9.30 for 6 issues (1 year) or £18 for 12 issues (2 years). Call or email for a subscription form. Families Herts, PO Box 434, Pinner, HA5 9AH Tel/Fax: 020 8428 6384

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News & Views Walk that way It’s time to get walking again! This year’s Walk To School Week runs from 19-23 May. The campaign will be bigger and better than ever before, with plenty of fun ideas of how to get involved. With Strider’s 5-day Walking Challenge it’s easier than ever to take part, plus there’s a chance to win an iPad mini. Walk to School Week reinforces five benefits of walking: safety, discovery, health, eco-friendly and social time. So how about setting up a Park & Stride area around your school, or holding a Walk to School event and encouraging everyone to leave their cars at home for a day? One of our favourite ideas is to team up with neighbouring schools and organise a walking relay between schools, with refreshment stops at each one! Or

Carbon monoxide kills Have you got a carbon monoxide (CO) detector yet? If not, make sure you get one now. Lucy, who tragically lost her 7-year-old child to carbon monoxide poisoning, campaigns for parents to install CO detectors in their homes. A few months ago she told her good friend Christine, a mum of 4, to install one in her house as soon as possible. Christine took Lucy up on her advice and only days after she got a detector installed, it went off. A CO detector costs from as little as £7, and it could save your family’s life, just as it saved Christine’s.

you could nominate your dream walking companion from the world of books and dress up as them on Walk to School Day. A treasure hunt is a fun way to add a bit of competition on the walk to school, too. To message Walk to School Week: Tweet them at @livingstreets using #walktoschool, or post on their Facebook page livingstreetsuk. Download loads of fun puzzles, pledges and challenges at www.livingstreets.

The charity CO-Gas Safety is calling for the introduction of public health warnings about the gas which is odourless, colourless and can kill in seconds. ‘Being a deadly gas which cannot be sensed by smell, taste, touch or hearing, it is vital that people are aware of the dangers and know the steps to take to reduce their risk of being poisoned,’ said Stephanie Trotter, president of CO-Gas Safety. Reduce your risk of CO poisoning by having all appliances regularly maintained and chimneys regularly swept and checked. Ensure that all vents are clear and never take a barbecue or stove into any interior space such as a tent, boat, caravan or home, even if you think it has burned out. Most importantly buy a CO alarm that works to standard EN 50291. /

Family Adventure Holidays Brave enough for white water canoeing through a spectacular gorge and abseiling under a plunging waterfall? If not, how about gentler pursuits such as the spectacular bay walk at Mont St Michel or a bike touring through coast and countryside? Whether you’re seeking high-adrenaline thrills or a more relaxed holiday, Family Adventure Holidays offer something for everyone from tots to teens – and their parents. Three summer holidays based in different regions of France are available, with prices starting at just £295 per adult and £245 per child


for seven nights’ full board with all activities. Dates are availability from July 19 to September 13. Choose between a fun-packed, all-inclusive holiday based at a chateau in Normandy; a high-octane watersports holiday on the Mediterranean coast; or a week’s adventure in the Ardeche where the highlight is the thrilling descent of the Ardeche gorge by canoe. All activities are led by professionally-qualified English-speaking instructors and holidays also include outings and evening entertainment with camp fires, kids’ games and barbecues. Nothing is compulsory and there is a flexible choice of activities and accommodation. Call 01273 803030

Claire Adams Celebrates 10 years with Tinies Childcare

Learning to Swim with Aweswim Aweswim is a local swim school, run by Perdi Parris, that offers courses for people of all ages and abilities from parent and baby groups right through to adults. Aweswim runs swim schools in Watford, Kings Langley, St Albans and Royston in Herts and others further afield. In order to provide the highest possible quality of teaching, groups are kept to a maximum of six students so that each participant’s progress can be carefully monitored. For adults and children that would prefer one-to-one teaching private lesson are also offered with the advantage that teaching can be specifically tailored to the needs of

the individual. For a unique experience they offer ‘My First Swim’, where parents can hire the pool and take their baby for her or his very first dip. Because it is an exclusive occasion photographs can be taken of this special moment (photography is not allowed during group swimming lessons). During these sessions siblings and extended family can watch from a comfortable viewing area. Watford, Kings Langley, St Albans: 01923 537070. Royston: 01763 208013

Visit the Lambs (and Velma) at Hatfield Park Farm The keepers at Hatfield Park Farm are inordinately proud of their small flock of Hebridean sheep. The phrase “wild and woolly” The venerable Velma describes the seven ewes and one ram to a tee. Whilst all of the sheep are middle aged it is the Ram, Chiltern Vermouth, known to his farm friends as Velma, who at

the grand old age of 16 years has managed to father the first lambs to arrive on the farm and there looks like many more to come! Velma, a kind and biddable chap, has come through the wet and windy winter well, spending part of the time tucked up in a stable with Stinky, his daughter from last year and Hoppy, a Dorset Poll sheep. It is hoped that as the weather improves Velma can get outside again his girls. To meet Velma, his ewes and the new lambs pay a visit to Hatfield Park Farm. Call 01707 287010

Congratulations to Claire Adams, who took ownership of her first franchise of Tinies Hertfordshire in 2004, and, having acquired her fifth branch in 2010, ten years later she’s the largest franchisee in Tinies history. Childcare has changed in the past ten years, but by constantly re-evaluating the services she offers to meet the needs of the community, Claire’s business has grown. Initially providing nannies, she has added mobile crèche & event childcare, emergency back-up nannies and nursery staff supply to the growing list of services available. Claire has also begun to supply crèche teams to children’s centres and parenting groups, and is planning Tinies first permanent crèche in Hertfordshire/Buckinghamshire. Call 01628 522212

Hertford Primary School Pupils to develop Happy App An inventive team of year 6 budding young entrepreneurs from Bengeo Primary School in Hertford have launched a global campaign on the Kickstarter website to secure £12,500 of investment in the design, creation and marketing of a new digital game named Happy Tree. They have come up with a gaming concept to promote happiness in those who play it.

The pupils said: ‘We want our game to be played by children all over the world. It will make them stop and think about what makes them happy’. The children will be working with industry mentors, as they learn about app development and will create their game with support from professional designers, illustrators and coders. They will also see how the product is

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published in app stores on both android and ios platforms. Their teacher, Julia Bateson said: “Investors in Happy Tree will be part of something truly innovative, bringing hundreds of children together in a creative enterprise.” Go to and search ‘happy tree’. Call 01992 582765


Party Feature

Fabulous parties at every age A birthday party is a ritual of childhood and an event that’s remembered forever. So the pressure is on – how do you ensure success and survival (both your own and your home’s)? Joanna Moorhead guides you through what’s best, age by age.


There’s just one word that matters here: simplicity. Birthday parties for tinies can be marvellous but they don’t need to be elaborate. In essence, you’re catering for the grown-ups as much as for the children – because at this stage, the adults will definitely stay (and you’re likely to have a few grandparents in the mix as well). Concentrate on creating a fun, easy, safe space for the children – a soft play space with plenty of toys. Make sure the adults are well catered-for: if they stay calm, the children will as well. If you want something with a bit of a theme, how about a teddy bears’ picnic? Make sure everyone remembers to take their favourite cuddlies home at the end though, or there will be tears at bedtime!


At this stage parties can be more ambitious and it is worth investing in a great entertainer: they are experts, know how to control a crowd while producing shrieks and honest laughs. At this age children can have loads of fun without a big outlay; later on, when they’re tweens and teens, you’ll be under pressure to shell out big-time. A party at home, in a park or a hall can be huge fun; traditional party games will

Little Bird by Jools Oliver at Mothercare:

be popular, and if you want to push the boat out a bit hire a bouncy castle; or if home isn’t a possibility, a soft play centre will be hasslefree. Themed parties are great and they make life simpler for the party organiser: a pirate theme is always popular, or sea creatures, or pick up on your child’s favourite book or TV programme. Dressing up is a big hit for this age group too. See Kool Kidz, Adam Ants and Hatfield Kids Fun Zone in the Party Directory.


Activities work a treat at this stage, wherever the venue. For a popular and low-budget option, think about a baking party at home – weigh out all the ingredients before the children arrive, get them to mix and decorate them and then pop them in the oven to bake while you play a few party games (shortbread biscuits are easy peasy; have a range of cutters for exciting shapes). Or, make life even simpler and engage the experts: See Little Cookies and Cinnamon Square in the Party Directory.


Older children like going out to party. To keep the costs down, encourage a smaller number of guests – think about a trip to the seaside or to an exciting adventure playground they’ve not visited before, and remember that the journey can be as much fun as the activity at the end of it. If you don’t mind spending a bit more, a trip to a climbing wall, an ice rink, a bowling rink or a go-karting centre can be wonderful fun too. See Sportspace, Sound Cube, Rye-Assic Adventure Park in the Party Directory, Go Kart Krazy.

The golden party rules *Never have a party that lasts over two hours. *The younger the child, the fewer the guests. *Have a plan mapped out for what should happen when. *Keep food simple with minimal options. *Try not to over cater (easier said than done). *Visit the pound shop for party bag goodies. *For an easier life put cup cakes into the party bags. For more party ideas see the Party Directory page 9.


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Party Directory Adam Ants Adam Ants provide costumed entertainers for either one or two hours. Parties include music, dancing, games, magic tricks, balloon modelling and puppetry. Older children will enjoy a disco party with games and prizes. Try a teddy making party or a sports party complete with medals and trophies. Tables and chair, face painters, bouncy castles available for hire. 020 8959 1045

Parties from 2 years up in your home or a hall. Choose a theme: Under the Sea, Cars, Jungle Animals and lots more. ArtsKool can also design a theme based on your child’s ideas. One or two hour parties with a minimum of ten children. ArtsKool Academy offer afterschool and weekend creative art sessions. 07890 575828

Cinnamon Square At its Rickmansworth café Cinnamon Square host baking parties for 5s and over. Parties include baking and fun experiments like discovering why and how bread rises. Older kids (9+) can choose a Cupcake or Chocolate Making party. Buy KiddieKraft baking kits for a party bag alternative; personalised free and delivered nationally from £4.50 for orders of 15 plus. 01923 778353

Go Kart Krazy Great fun, action-packed parties for ages 4–10. Racing electric go-karts inside an inflatable circuit. Parties tailored to suit the age of the children. All drivers receive a quality medal and certificate. Suitable for indoors or outside, parties or school fetes. 0845 330 8896

Hatfield Kids Fun Zone The Funzone is an indoor multi-level soft play area at the Birchwood Leisure Centre in Hatfield. Party hire from only £100. With a limit of up to 40 children you can invite the whole class! Take your own party food. Open daily from 10am-4pm for 90 minute play sessions. Height restriction of 1.52M (5’) applies. 2 hour party hire for only £120 during August! 01707 262023 or 01707 270772. Kool Kidz Parties A Kool Kidz’ party goes with a swing from beginning to end. Choose from: Traditional (3 years +), Sports (relay races, football, unihockey, team-games), Themed (a twist on the traditional party; superheros, fairies and more), Disco (with lights, snow machine and games, dancing competitions and prizes), Pedal Go Kart (races, timed laps, games with a medal for the birthday child). Two hour parties with a break for food followed by more fun. One hour after school parties also available. 0845 603 2858

Drama Llamas Drama Llamas brings a delightful engaging focus to children’s parties. They will perform a magical story to the children before leading them through a lively, fun-filled adventure using games, activities and props based around the story they’ve just heard. Drama Llamas will give your child a day to remember! 07867 793407 Cooking parties for children of all ages. 3-9 year olds make their own birthday tea and those aged 10+ can host a three course dinner party! Lots of menu options. All ingredients, equipment and know how are provided. Most allergies catered for. 01727 839444


Mill Green Mill & Museum Four party options- Pizza Perfection: Make your own pizza and eat it hot from the oven. Little Red Hen: craft activities based around the well-known story. Victorian Time Travellers: Dress up as a Victorian, make toys and have a go at wash-day. Roman Soldiers: Dress up as a Roman, make a sword and shield. 01707 357850

Poutfit Parties Poutfit Parties offer a bespoke party experience for girls to indulge with their friends in a magical pampered photo shoot in a professional studio. Choose from the Mini Makeover party for girls aged 6-11years or the Model Makeover party for girls aged 10+. 07957 131046

Rye-Assic Adventure Park Have a stress free party at Rye-Assic Adventure Park. Select a Bronze, Silver or Gold party package. The Bronze Package (£12.50 per child) includes park entry, a party host, party meal, birthday cake and one token for your chosen ride. There’s a pirate galleon themed play area, the Dinodrome indoor soft play, and a dedicated space when it’s time for the party meal and birthday cake to be served. Upgrade to a Silver or Gold package for an exclusive event for up to 50 children, prices available on request. 01992 460 895 ext 4

Sportspace Treat your child to a birthday party to remember! Sportspace parties are fun, active, exciting and stress free for parents. Sportspace, XC and LittleHay Golf Complex organise a range of different packages at each venue for all ages and interests. Choices include soft play, fun and games, go-karts, roller skating and pool parties with large pool inflatables. 01442 507100

Stagecoach Parties Stagecoach Parties are packed with dramatic games, fabulous songs, funky dances and are tailor-made for each age group. With themed parties; fairies, princesses, pirates, pop-stars, animals, super heroes, wizards and musicals for 4-10 year olds and exciting murder mystery parties for 11-16 year olds, there’s a Stagecoach Party for everyone! Chorleywood/Rickmansworth: 01923 771291 Potters Bar: 01582 713771 Welwyn-Hatfield: 01462 338387

Grab a mic and unleash your inner popstar! Go solo, or party with your friends and sing your favourite songs just like your pop idols. Sing, Dance, Record and receive a FREE full-colour personalised *DVD of your performance! (*Party sessions only) Suitable for 7 years+ 01923 222654 Ultrabuzz Parties Ultrabuzz Parties are a fun mix of energetic kids' Zumba and the latest street dance moves. Parties are tailored for 4-7 year-olds, 8-12 year olds and teens. Ultrabuzz will come to your venue (a hall with wooden flooring is recommended). Parties are run by SholĂŠe Parry (a qualified Zumba instructor) and Debbie Butler (a professional dancer), and they both know how to pump up the fun! 07771 316 242 or email info@ultrabuzzdance.

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Summer Camp Taster It’s May and summer is ages away, or is it? Just think in eight to ten weeks or so, that’s it, end-of-term, and then what? Don’t get caught out, plan ahead and life will be a lot easier. They (or you) may not want every waking moment time-tabled but children do like to know what they will be doing during the summer break, it gives them a focus and something to look forward to and get excited about and they will appreciate their ‘free’ time all the more. Here’s a taster …

Kool Kidz Camps Kool Kidz run camps every holiday including half-terms. They offer excellent childcare during an action packed camp that is suitable for children aged 4 to 12 years. Camps run Monday to Friday with Wednesday being the weekly themed day. Summer theme days are Grand Prix, Mini Olympics, Archery, Wacky Races and Inflatable Fun. The Kool Kidz staff are enthusiastic qualified professionals who are CRB checked. In this safe setting children will have fun as they develop social skills, get lots of exercise and meet new friends. The next camp is 27th May –30th May 2014. The summer holiday camp runs from 28th July until 29th August and both are held in St Albans. 0845 603 2858

FunTech FunTech brings learning alive at their computer based tech camps for kids and teenagers. FunTech focuses on teaching 7 to 17 year olds cutting edge Tech skills. This summer there are 14 camps to choose from including Robot Programming with LEGO NXT, Java Coder, 3D Game Design, Minecraft Redstone and FunTyper®. FunTech camps turn your child’s passive computer playing into proactive learning.

Perform Does Peter Pan This summer Perform are running some brilliant 5 day holiday courses based on the story of Peter Pan, for 4-8 year olds. With colourful costumes, original songs and live music, the children will enjoy a fun-packed week making new friends, stretching their imagination and putting together a lively


show that will delight family and friends. Held in a St Albans venue and costing £149 (25% discount for siblings and reductions for groups). Early Bird Discount: 10% off until 1st June. Call 0845 400 1272

Berkhamsted BASECAMP BASECAMP at Berkhamsted School offers a choice of freestanding courses featuring the Andrew Flintoff Cricket Academy, the Gold Medal Academy and The Brendan Cole International Dance Academy. The Multi Activity Camp for children aged from 4 to 11 years offers activities that develop sporting, artistic and social skills such as football, art, cookery, performance and swimming. For younger children (aged 3-5 years old) there is Mini BASECAMP which can be booked by the half-day. Mini BASECAMP runs alongside the Multi Activity Camp and the younger children are encouraged to take part in gentle activities with the opportunity to enjoy a fun swimming session at the Knox Johnston Sports Centre each morning. The day starts at 9.30am until 4.30pm with wrap-around care from 7.30am until 6.30pm. Half-term dates: 28th – 30th May. Summer dates: 4th July – 29th August. Get a 5% discount: book by 30th April for half term camps and by 31st May for summer camps. Call 01442 358115

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Summer Camp Taster

SuperCamps SuperCamps offer three types of camps each with a different focus: Multi-activity, Raw

Stagecoach Workshops If you think drama, singing and dance classes were just full of kids who want to be the next Matilda or Charlie then, think again; as many parents have realised the real benefit is increased confidence and improved communication skills. In a relaxed friendly setting students are taught a range of skills that are useful for daily life. The Stagecoach teachers gradually gain the children’s’ trust, so they are confident that they will not be made to do anything they don’t feel comfortable with. The teachers make it high energy and the children have lots of fun as they build essential skills like speaking clearly and charismatically and learning how to work as a team. See advert on page 11 for your local school and for dates of Summer Workshops.


Adventure and A Passion For … At the Multi-Activity camps children aged 4 to 14 years old take part in a programme that offers sports, arts and crafts with children their own age. The Raw Adventure programme is a 5 day course (3 days offered at some centres) for ages 7-14 years. Children will abandon their tech and get back to nature and learn survival skills. “A Passion For…” courses are 5 day workshops (3-day option at some venues) for ages 6-16. These workshops develop a specific skill such as arts and crafts, cookery, invention and business. Great for kids who know what they want and for those who want to try something new. Call 01235 467300

YHA Lee Valley launches Watersports Summer Camp The Youth Hostel Association (YHA) are running a Watersports Plus residential at YHA Lee Valley from 4th to 10th August for children aged 10 – 16 years. As well as providing increased funding for children from low income families the YHA also offer discounted prices on bookings of two or more places and the option to pay monthly. This means that more young people will be able to enjoy an amazing experience this summer. The camp includes instruction in a range of water-based activities such as sailing, kayaking, canoeing, raft building, dragon boating and windsurfing plus meals and accommodation. Call 01629 592 530

Top Hat Top Hat Stage School, the part-time stage school for four to 17-year-olds, is gearing up for a summer of Disney fun. Children will have the chance to star in a production of the much-loved Disney classic Mulan with three summer schools in August: 4-8 August at Potters Bar, 11-15 August and 18-21 August at the Sandpit Theatre at Sandringham School in St Albans. During summer school courses students will have lots of fun learning the lines, songs and dance routines from Mulan. The five-day courses cost £100 for four-tofive-year-olds and £150 for six-to-17-yearolds. Top Hat also runs seven, term-time stage schools in Hertfordshire to which it offers free taster sessions on the first day of term. On 20th July, 400 Top Hat children will tread the boards at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane in the London’s West End for a charity fundraiser show to celebrate the stage school’s 20th anniversary! Call 01727 812666 www. tophatstageschool.

Get Reading with Centre 4 Excellence Scientists have found that the most important cognitive skills for learning are memory, attention and focus, processing and sequencing. Having the ability to store and retrieve information and ideas from short-term memory is essential for reading comprehension and maths. To maintain attention requires the ability to focus on a task whilst ignoring background distractions. Being able to follow instructions requires the ability to process the information given and then to carry out the instructions in a logical sequence. Developing these cognitive skills are essential in learning to read and for comprehension and maths. Weakness in these key cognitive skills can lead to apathy as children see their peers’ race ahead whilst they struggle with the basics. Children who improve these skills can make marked progress quickly. Here are some of our results: Katie (Yr 7) Math 4c-4b; Humanya (Yr3) Literacy 2c-2A. Unlock your child's potential! Call 07919 067343 centre4excellence@

Family Matters

Put down the gadgets and pledge to spend more creative time with your family! Pledge 2 Play is a new campaign launched by directors of two creative kids’ brands, Aly Cranston and Jennifer Duthie. Aly from The Rainy Day Box Co and Jennifer from Skribbies came together through their shared passion for getting children back into more creative and traditional play with a little less gadgetry. The campaign encourages grownups to put down the gadgets and provides creative support to help them pledge two hours a week to spend creatively with their little ones. The balance between electronic and traditional play can get a little uneven when we are surrounded with so much technology. Children do learn through the use of apps, computers and TV but it is often a solitary activity. Pledge 2 Play encourages parents to redress this balance and make a conscious effort to spend family time together in a creative way.

How does it work? • Commit to a regular time each day or week to spend two hours creatively with your kids; it could be 30 minutes every other day or two hours over the weekend. • Turn off all TVs, computers, tablets and phones. • Choose a fun activity to do together (not homework). Whatever you like: cooking, making things, drawing, story-telling.

What are the benefits? • Children’s imagination and creativity may grow. • Little ones can talk about things that are on their mind. • Family relationships can strengthen. • Children’s behaviour could improve.

Join the Pledge 2 Play and show your support at signup. Pledge 2 Play will send you creative ideas, tips and exclusive deals to help you spend quality play time with your children.

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What’s On at Half Term We aim for accuracy but do check with the venue before setting out in case details have changed.

ARTSKOOL ACADEMY 07890 575828 Arty Mornings 2 hour sessions for ages 4-12. Draw, paint & clay model. Civic Centre, Prospect Place, Welwyn AL6 9ER 27 May Artscape, Unit 8 Southdown Industrial Estate, Harpenden AL5 1PW 28 & 29 May £14 per child. 2 children £25

BERKHAMSTED BASECAMP Berkhamsted School Castle Campus, Castle Street, Berkhamsted HP4 2BB 01442 358115 Multi Activity Camp 28-30 May – 9.30am-4.30pm. Wraparound options 7.30am-6.30pm at £5 per hour. Ages 4-11. Mini Basecamp for 3-5 yrs. £30.50 per day. Mini Basecamp: £15.25 per am/pm session

BRITISH SCHOOLS MUSEUM 41/42 Queen Street, Hitchin SG4 9TS 01462 420144 Be a Victorian Child 29 May – 10.30am-2pm (last entry 1pm) Try washing & cleaning in our Victorian house. Knitting & games children played in the past. Go back to school with pen, ink & slates! Child £4. Adult (free entry) must accompany

BUTTERFLY WORLD Miriam Lane, Off Noke Lane, Chiswell Green AL2 3NY 01727 869203 Entrance: £7.50. Concs £6.50. 3-16 yrs £5.50. Under 3s free. Family £22.50 Face Painting 26 May-1 Jun. Daily – 12-3pm Ages 2+. £4 (+ normal admission) Seed Bombs 26 May – 10.30am-12noon & 1.30-3pm Mix wild seeds into a ball of clay. Throw to explode & seed your own meadow of wild flowers. 3 yrs+. £2 (+ normal admission) Make a Felt Butterfly 27 May – 11am-3pm Make a butterfly - and the felt too! 3 yrs+. £4 (+ normal admission) Bug Hunts 27 & 29 May – 11.30am & 2.30pm Join experts with sweep nets & ID charts. What creepy crawlies can you find? 3 yrs+. £1 (+ normal admission) Make Edible Hanging Baskets 28 May – 10.30am-12noon & 1.30-3pm Plant a hanging basket to take home with plants such as tomatoes, herbs or peas. 5 yrs+. Must book. £5 (+ normal admission)


Bug Hotels 30 May – 10.30am-12noon & 1.30-3pm Create luxurious nests for the bugs in your garden. 3yrs+. Must book. £4 (+ normal admission) Bug Bonanza 31 May – 10am-4pm Insect talks & handling. 3 yrs+. Free with normal admission Butterfly Feeder 1 Jun – 11am-12.30pm and 1.30-3pm Make & decorate a pretty butterfly nectar feeder for your garden. 3 yrs+. £2 (+ normal admission)

FROGMORE PAPER MILL Fourdrinier Way, Hemel Hempstead HP3 9RY 01442 234600 Monsters 27 May – 10am-4pm 5 yrs+ (with adult). Guided paper crafting. Create a scary monster! Must book. £5 per family

GORDON CRAIG THEATRE Lytton Way, Stevenage SG1 1LZ 01438 363200 Half Term Activity Days 27-30 May – 9.30-11.30am, 2-4pm or 8am-6pm 4-11 yrs. Sports; drama; dance; arts & crafts; disco; bouncy castle. £5 per session. All day £25

GOSLING SPORTS PARK Stanborough Road, Welwyn Garden City AL8 6XE 01707 384307 Go Kids Multi-Sport Holiday Camp 27-30 May – 9am-12.30pm (3 yrs), 9am-3.30pm (4-16 yrs). Extended hours available Sports include skiing, fun rings, badminton, athletics, dodgeball, trampolining, gymnastics, football & tennis. Plus arts & crafts for young children and use of the Gym & Spinning Studio for older children. 3 yrs: £15 per day (members £12). 4-16 yrs: £23 per day (members £20) Tots Tennis Holiday Sessions Info: Julie Spink 07787 772393 27 & 29 May – 9.15-10am 2-5 yrs. £5 per session Superstar Tennis Holiday Camps Info: Julie Spink 07787 772393 or Sarah Jackson 07966 575511 27-30 May – 10am-12 noon or 1-3pm or 10am-3pm 5-14 yrs. Half day £10. Whole day £20. Sibling discount 10% for all day bookings

HATFIELD FOREST Takeley, Bishop's Stortford CM22 6NE 01279 870678 Woodland Folk Wednesday 28 May – 11am-2pm

More info: Julie Abrams Humphries, 01279 870447 Come dressed as a Fairy, Gnome or Elf & meet the Woodland Folk. Trail & activities take about an hour. Lake area for start. Under 5s (with adult). Child £3

HERTFORD MUSEUM 18 Bull Plain, Hertford SG14 1DT 01992 582686 Animal Antics 27-29 May. Drop in 10.30am-3.30pm (last entry 3pm) Make an animal mask & other crafts inspired by the Museum’s natural history collection. £1.50 per child

HERTS COUNTY SHOW The Showground, Dunstable Road, Redbourn AL3 7PT 24 & 25 May – 8.30am-5.30pm Animals, displays, fun, food & shopping. Per day: £17. Senior £15. 5-15 yrs £8. Under 5s free. Family £42. Discounts available for advance booking

HERTFORDSHIRE SPORTS VILLAGE Hatfield AL10 9EU 01707 284466 27-30 May Swimming, climbing, trampolining & mini boots courses. Multi activity day camps too. See website for details.

HERTS YOUNG MARINERS BASE Windmill Lane, Cheshunt EN8 9AJ 01992 628403 Annual Junior Membership £5 Holiday Activities 27-30 May 9-18 yrs. No experience necessary. Archery; kayaking, stand up paddleboarding; climbing; windsurfing; caving; canoeing & sailing. Half day £25. Full day £50 (£23/ £46 if booked online) Come and try… Kayaking 28 May – 4.30-6pm 9-16 yrs. £5 See website for longer holiday courses in climbing, windsurfing, paddlesports & sailing.

KNEBWORTH HOUSE Knebworth Sat Nav: SG1 2AX 01438 812661 Dinosaur Adventure 25 May Follow the dinosaur trail to claim a prize. Reptiles to handle too. £9. Book online to save 10%. Trail sheet £1 extra per child

KOOL KIDZ CAMPS St John Fisher School, Hazelmere School, St Albans AL4 9RW 0845 603 2858 27-30 May Ages 4-12. Half or full days. See website for prices

LEE VALLEY ATHLETICS CENTRE 61 Meridian Way, Edmonton, London N9 0AR. (Rail: Ponders End or Edmonton Green) 020 8344 7230 Star Track 8-12 yrs: 27-30 May – 10am-2pm 6-8 yrs: 27-29 May – 2.30-5pm Expert tuition in a range of athletics skills, from javelin to long jump. £44-£54

LEE VALLEY ICE CENTRE Lea Bridge Road, Leyton, London E10 7QL. (Rail: Clapton) 020 8533 3154 IJS Free Skating/Pairs Open Competition 26 & 27 May – 8am-7pm Watch as competitors from across the country take part in this freestyle competition. FREE

Alive and Deadly with Amey Zoo 27 May – 10.30 & 11.30am, 1 & 2pm 30-min shows. Featuring ‘Animal Mark’, as seen on the ‘Deadly 60’ roadshow. Ages 6+. £6 Nature Detectives in Tring Park 30 May – 10.30 & 11.30am & 2pm 1 hour workshops for all ages. Must book. Note location. FREE

ON YOUR BIKE FOR ISABEL HOSPICE Bishop’s Stortford Rugby Club, Hadham Road CM23 2QE 01707 382500 25 May Circular 25km route suitable for families. £15. Child £5



Stubbins Hall Lane, Waltham Abbey, Essex EN9 2EF. (Rail: Cheshunt, 2 mile walk) 01992 892781 £9. Child £8. Under 2s free Petunia's Pick: Love British Farming 28 May – 10am-5pm See how nature & farming work together to protect the countryside. Jump on the tractor to meet our dairy farmers, see our woolly friends have their annual haircut, meet British wildlife & more. Sheep Week 24 May-1 Jun – 10am-5pm Action filled half term packed with baaarilliant goings on.

White Stubbs Lane, Broxbourne EN10 7QA 01992 470490 CARE for a S-Mile 28 May Walk a sponsored mile around the Park, supporting Carers in Hertfordshire. Entertainment & stalls. £10 includes sponsors pack, Park entry, refreshments, discounted entry for friends & family

LEE VALLEY RIDING CENTRE Lea Bridge Road, Leyton, London E10 7QL (Rail: Clapton) 020 8556 2629 Riding Centre Customer Show 26 May – 10.30am-3.30pm Spectators are welcome to watch the Riding Centre customers compete in jumping & showing classes. Refreshments available. FREE

LOWEWOOD MUSEUM High Street, Hoddesdon EN11 8BH 01992 445596 Family Fun 29 May. Drop in 12-3pm Family crafts. FREE

NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM AT TRING The Walter Rothschild Building, Akeman Street, Tring HP3 6AP 020 7942 6171 Pond Dipping at Ashridge 26 May – 10.30-11.30am 5 yrs+. Must book. Note location. £4.50 Create a Creature 26 & 29 May. Drop-in 10am-4pm All ages. FREE

RAF MUSEUM Grahame Park Way, London NW9 5LL 020 8205 2266 WW1 Make and Take Activities 26-31 May – 11am-1pm & 2-4pm 5 yrs+. Make a WW1 Airfix model or get creative with colourful pencils & paper. From £2 per kit. Free Museum entry. Parking £2.50-£3.50

ROLLERCITY Campus West, Welwyn Garden City AL8 6BX 01707 357117 Half Term Holiday Skates 27-30 May – 1-2.30pm & 3-4.30pm All ages. Advance booking strongly recommended. £6.50. £8 with skate hire

ROYAL GUNPOWDER MILLS Beaulieu Drive, Waltham Abbey, Essex EN9 1JY 01992 707370 Spy Kids 24 May-1 Jun Come in disguise to break codes, go undercover, foil espionage & reveal doubleagents. £9.50. Concs £8.50. Child £7.50. Under 3s free. Family tickets available

Say you saw it in

RYE MEADS NATURE RESERVE Rye Road, Stanstead Abbotts Sat Nav EN11 0EH The Family Art Week 26 May-1 Jun – 9am-5pm Explore nature from an artist’s viewpoint. Fill in the special sketch book with colours, textures, lines, shapes & patterns, then move on to wildlife sketching. Display your best drawings in the Rye Meads Art Gallery. Packs cost £5

SHEPRETH WILDLIFE PARK Station Road, Shepreth, nr Royston SG8 6PZ 01763 262226 £10.95. Child/Conc £8.95. Under 2s free 30th Anniversary Celebrations 26 May Love Your Zoo Week 27-30 May Conservation-themed fun & games.

ST ALBANS CATHEDRAL AL1 1BY 01727 860780 Family Discovery Morning 29 May – 10am-12.30pm Trails & crafts. Ages 3-11 (with adult). Meet in the North Transept. FREE

ST ALBANS STEAM & COUNTRY SHOW Oaklands College (Smallford Campus), St Albans AL4 0XR 31 May & 1 Jun. Opens 10am. Steam engine parade 2pm. 50th anniversary event. £6. Senior £5. Child £3. Family (2+2) £15

WILLOWS FARM VILLAGE Coursers Road, London Colney, St Albans AL4 0PF 0870 1299718 Activity Day Camps 27-30 May 3-12 yrs. £43 per day (includes meals). Early & late clubs extra £3 each. Discounts available

WIMPOLE ESTATE Arrington, Royston SG8 0BW 01223 206000 Must book: 0844 2491895 Climb a Tree 24 May Climb into a tree's canopy using ropes, knots and karabiners, securely attached in a harness. If you're feeling brave take the zip wire back down. £18 Wild About Bats 30 & 31 May – 8.30-10.30pm Guided walk into the park. £6. 5-17 yrs £4. Under 5s free


School Open Days

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Families Herts May-June 2014  

Party Feature, Summer Camps & School Open Days