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Issue No. 57

July/Aug 2014

Summer Fun Special! Summer Offers: • Win a kid's designer T-shirt • Win a family ticket to Butterfly World • Save £10 off tickets at Paradise Wildlife Park • 2 for 1 entry at Willows Activity Farm • Half price entry for one child at Butterfly World

The Herts magazine with the information young families want


From your Editor…

In this issue:

In the last issue I wrote about heading full speed towards summer and – what do you know – it’s here! I welcome it gladly but I am aware that the reality is not always the idyll that we so look forward to. The summer season presents its own stresses and trying to strike a sensible work-life balance can sometimes seem trickier when children are at home for so many weeks. The Summer Fun Special and Summer What’s On sections have lots of ideas of things to do for children and families. We all like free stuff, so make sure you check out our Free Events listing on page 16. We are thrilled to be launching our new website with its interactive What’s On facility. See page 4 for more information and go to to try it out. What’s my best advice for summer survival? Take one day at a time and keep your July/ August copy of Families Herts magazine handy!

News & Views: 4 Competitions: 6 Summer Fun Special: 7 Summer Safety: 13 Kids' Crafts: 14 Child Heath: 15 Summer What’s On: 16

Shelley 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. Email to request copies for your venue.

Don’t miss a copy. 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.

Next Issue: Schools and Clubs & Classes Copy deadline: 28th July

Families Herts, PO Box 434, Pinner, HA5 9AH Tel: 020 8428 6384

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New Website

Fab site, What's On, Directories

See our new website at We all like a makeover now and then and has a fresh new look. The Families website is well known for its useful information and our latest version is a breeze to use. The re-branding expresses our aim to cover all things ‘families’, as well as offering you ‘endless ideas for families’. Users can set their home page to show only

local information. Simply enter your postcode once and the site will remember you each time you visit with no need to log in. Use our interactive Whats On calendar to search for local things to do or places to go. We still have a huge amount of interesting content and we are adding more and more.

Killer Bags that Threaten the Environment A shocking 10.6 billion single-use bags will be given out over the next 18 months before the Government implements its new bag charge legislation in October 2015. With the average person using 133 bags per year, the Break The Bag Habit coalition are launching a new website to encourage supporters to pledge to stop using single-use bags, in an effort to offset the environmental impacts.  The website is supported by internationally acclaimed photographer Martin Brent with a series of stunning yet shocking images entitled ‘Killer Bags.’ Don’t delay, make your pledge today!

Image by Martin Brent

Summer Reading Challenge

Don’t myth out on the fun, enter the Mythical Maze Reading Challenge at your local library. Children can sign up at the library (including mobile libraries) and collect their free starter pack while stocks last. All children have to do is read six books of their choice and they will get a mythical creature sticker for each book read. Children who complete the Challenge

will be invited to attend a special ceremony to receive their medal and certificate and will be entered into a prize draw for a chance to meet an author. The Challenge starts on 12th July until 6th September. There is a launch event at Royston Library on 12th July where there will be lots of free children’s activities. Other events include art workshops and a special libraries day at Butterfly World in Chiswell Green on 29th July.  Visit for fun games and the chance to link with authors and other children taking the Challenge. To find out more visit libraries / 0300 1234 049

Labels4Kids make it easy Labels4Kids make it so easy to order labels and more with their fast, streamlined ordering process. The new website is state-of-theart and poised for what is expected to be a very busy summer. If you need labels don’t leave it until the last moment, order early to guarantee a quick turnaround in time for school restarting. Not only can you design your vinyl order on screen but, if you spend £20 plus, there’s free postage. You can’t ask for more; with a 100% money back guarantee if you have any problems with your labels. Labels4Kids offers a large tried and tested range that has something for everyone.


New Website

Competitions, Activities, Articles

Local PTA Wins Regional Award The Lea School Association (LSA) in Harpenden is regional winner in the ‘Fundraising Success’ category of the PTA-UK Gold Star Awards 2014, winning £500. It is easy to see why the judges liked their application. When a member of the LSA offered her husband’s Lego collection, the committee members set about creating an event that would attract the local community. They asked each year group to build a Lego creation and invitations were also sent to other primary schools, Beavers and Brownies. The creations formed a Lego exhibition which included Lego models created by the collection’s owner. Their skillfully planned event attracted 800 visitors and £3,000 profit. The 2014 event had 1,600 visitors with £6,500 profit!

New Children and Families Act A landmark Act comes into law this summer giving greater protection to vulnerable children, better support for children whose parents are separating and help for parents to balance work and family life. It will also help children with Special Educational Needs and disabilities, while ensuring vital changes to the adoption system meaning more children who need loving homes are placed faster.  The Act will also make it easier for families to access more flexible childcare, while making amendments to the law to protect children in cars from the dangers of second-hand smoke, and giving parents new options to share parental leave following the birth of a baby.  Possibly the most interesting change is that since June every employee across the country has been granted the right to request flexible working hours, with a duty on employers to consider requests in a ‘reasonable’ manner.

Cool Milk Research by the British Nutrition Foundation released last year revealed that almost a third of primary school children thought that cheese came from plants. So, to improve children’s understanding of foods and drink in line with the objectives of the School Food Plan, due to be launched in September, Cool Milk has introduced the Cool Milk Show. The show is an entertaining and educational package for schools with fun, interactive games, songs and puzzles following the adventures of ‘Milkman’ and ‘our kid’ as they discover where milk comes from and why it’s good for us. Find out more at

World Breastfeeding Week This year’s World Breastfeeding Week takes place 1-7 August with the theme Breastfeeding: A Winning Goal for Life! Protecting, promoting and supporting breastfeeding is a vital, life-saving goal of World Breastfeeding Week, with breastfeeding a key intervention for improving child survival in the world, potentially saving about 20% of children under five across the globe.  They need your help, so please get involved by organising activities or pledging your time or money at www.  Organise a baby shower or help raise awareness in your community or enter the World Breastfeeding Week 2014 Photo Contest.

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Competitions Win a cute Tommy & Lottie is a new company based in St Albans that offers top quality, 100% soft cotton, baby t-shirts that are sustainably and ethically manufactured. Katie Carr, the founder of Tommy & Lottie, say’s: “Today’s consumers are so much more conscious of where, who and how products are made. I wanted to ensure that our products deliver excellent quality and that they are supplied by a manufacturer who looks after their work force, treats them well and pays them fairly.”  The t-shirts are designed and screen printed in the UK. All the designs have a British and nostalgic theme that will appeal to all generations. The summer collection features traditional fairground rides including a carousel horse, helter-skelter and a dodgem car. These little T’s make a perfect gift or

summer T-shirt

addition to any babies wardrobe. Enter for your chance to win one of three Tommy & Lottie T-shirts. Closing date: 31st August

Win a family ticket to Butterfly World in St Albans* where you can see over 500 beauties. Visit Ant World, and wonder at the busy leafcutter ants taking their leaves back to the nest. In the Insect Study Centre, get ‘hands on’ with creepy crawlies during Insect Handling sessions. Children will love the Natural Play area whilst parents enjoy a wander through the 18 designer gardens and wildflower meadows, and take a break at the Nectar House Café. Butterfly World is open 10am-5pm daily. For the full Children’s Holiday Activity Programme go to / 01727 869203. Enter for your chance to win one of two family tickets. Closing date: 18th July. BUTTERFLY WORLD SPECIAL OFFER: HALF PRICE ENTRY FOR ONE CHILD WITH EACH FULL PAYING ADULT (See advert on page 20) Visit Butterfly World in St Albans for lots of family fun. Learn about the lifecycle of the butterfly in the Tropical Butterfly House


*Each family ticket is for 2 adults and 2 children. Winners will receive a voucher that will end on 31st October 2014 (Bank Holidays are excluded).

Summer Fun Special

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Summer Fun Special Best Theatre Arts Best Theatre Arts are holding their 2014 summer schools from 28th July – 16th August. Each week has a different theme. For children aged 4-6 there’s First Class Holidays and the themes are The Wizard of Oz, Little Monsters Inc. and Finding Nemo. For the 6-16 years olds there’s Best Academy and the themes this year are Return to Narnia, Rock Academy and The Hounds of Marshalwick! / 01727 759634.

360 Play - The Place to Play Whatever the Weather! If you’re looking for a great place to take the children this summer then the place to go is 360 Play Stevenage. The area’s favourite children’s play centre, at Stevenage Leisure Park, offers a host of fun, active and creative play opportunities for children ages 2 to 12, within a clean, safe environment. There are indoor activities that will keep youngsters happy for hours and a new sand-play village opening this

Summer Playscheme at Birchwood Leisure Centre Children can join in lots of sports and arts & crafts activities as well as a chance to play in the Funzone indoor play area. Also on offer are trips to the seaside, Cuffley Camp and to Cassiobury Park in Watford. On National Play Day there will be an outing to Stanborough Park. During the themed weeks there is a lot of fun to be had. If the sun doesn’t shine there are plenty of indoor activities such as cinema afternoons. The Summer Playscheme runs weekdays from 24th July until 29th August, 8.30am - 6pm, for ages 5 years to school year 7. / 01707 270772

Play Aloud in the Holidays Reach for the

Apex Multisports run a series of fun and affordable holiday camps every school break across various locations in Hertfordshire. They offer Multi-Activity camps, Dance camps, and in some cases both within the same camp making it convenient for parents of children with different interests. To find out more go to or email


Play Aloud offers high quality, flexible Ofsted registered childcare for ages 3 to 12. Parents can book whatever times suits them from 7.30am to 6.30pm daily. Children have a choice of activities including crafts, wii games, board-games, outdoor play, Lego, toys, dress-up, books, cosy corner and construction materials. Between 10am until 3pm there are special holiday activities such as horrid histories, African safari, underwater adventures, mega messy play, Junior cookoff Europe, silly sports, art attacks, ultimate fitness, crazy construction and more! All activities are facilitated appropriately for all age groups by the qualified and experienced staff. Children love the family atmosphere, all are welcome.

Play Aloud, St Andrews Hitchin – 07903 336113 / playaloudstandrews@ Play Aloud, Pirton – 07985 517911 /

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Summer Fun Special Fly away to Neverland … with Perform

Summer is Spectacular at Willows Activity Farm

This summer Perform’s energetic young team of professional theatre people will take 4-8 year olds on a dazzling adventure to Neverland in the company of Peter Pan, Wendy, Tinkerbell and the Lost Boys. With colourful costumes, original songs and live music, children will enjoy a fun-packed week putting together a fantastic show what will delight family and friends. Cost: £149 (with a 25% sibling discount and reductions for groups). Book by 1st August and get 10% off. Quote code: FAMI220814 when booking. 28th July to 1st August at Fleetville Junior School, 228 Hatfield Road, St Albans, AL1 4LW. 0845 400 1272 /

Enjoy an a-maize-ing day of fun at the Willows’ Summer Spectacular event. There is a jam packed all-weather programme planned, including Tristan the Runaway Tractor, goat racing, farmyard animals and Woolly Jumpers indoor play barn and this year’s challenging maize maze which is expected to reach over two metres tall by the height of summer! With all activities, shows and funfair rides included in the entrance price families will experience a carefree day of wholesome fun. Willows Activity Farm will be open every day throughout the summer holidays. The Summer Spectacular runs from 19th July until 31st August. www.willowsactivityfarm. com / 0870 129 9718. See 2 for 1 voucher on p.20.

Berkhamsted BASECAMP

Be Kool Kidz this Summer!

Kool Kidz offer excellent childcare during an action packed summer camp for children aged 4 to 12 years. Camps run Monday to Friday with a themed day every Wednesday. Summer theme days are Grand Prix, Mini Olympics, Archery, Wacky Races and Inflatable Fun. The Kool Kidz staff are all qualified professionals with bags of enthusiasm and all are CRB checked. So parents can be assured that their children will be safe and have fun as they develop social skills, get lots of exercise and meet new friends. The summer holiday camp runs from 28th July until 29th August in St Albans. / 0845 603 2858


Berkhamsted BASECAMP runs from 4th July– 29th August and offers an wide range of activities in association with Activate Sport. They include the Andrew Flintoff Cricket Academy, Brendan Cole Academy of Performing Arts and Cookery courses from Beverley Glock. Plus, Tennis, Rugby, Ultimate Lacrosse, International Netball Roadshow, Performance Swimming, Multi-Activity camps and the Gold Medal Academy, devised by Denise Lewis OBE, that aims to give children the chance to try some of the sports that inspired in 2012. miniBASECAMP is designed for 3-5 year olds and can be booked for morning or afternoon sessions or as a full day. Most camps offer wrap-around care from 7.30am–6.30pm. Find out more at www. / 01442 358115. See Facebook page for special offer details.

Peppa Pig to visit Lee Valley Park Farms Peppa Pig will bring some cheeky fun to the farms when she visits on Wednesday 30th July. She’s looking forward to meeting a host of fans when she appears during the day at 11am, 12noon, 1.30pm, 2.30pm and 3.30pm. Lee Valley Park Farms is a great family day out with lots of fun activities and events. Meet some cuddly sheep, giant rabbits, rare breed pigs, long-necked llamas and a loveable meerkat family plus the new arrivals; lambs, piglets, ducklings and chicks. With indoor and outdoor play areas to explore, tractor and trailer rides, a toboggan run and the Orchard Café serving fresh tasty food – what’s not to like? Book in advance for faster entrance at / 01992 892 781.

Summer fun at Knebworth House and Gardens The home of the Lytton family for five hundred years, Knebworth is also the home of a fantastic Dinosaur Trail and an adventure playground that boasts swings, slides and walkways in ‘Fort Knebworth’, a zip wire and a bouncy castle plus fun splash-play water features. Family events this summer are Knebworth Country Show (19th and 20th July) with birds of prey, working dogs, equestrian stunt display, children’s entertainment, arts, crafts, gifts and food marquees. A Companion Dog show on the second day will raise funds for Marie Curie Cancer Care - so take along your canine friend and have a go! Book online and save 10%. IIlyria Theatre Company performs ‘George’s Marvellous Medicine’ in the open air (24th July & 14th August). Tickets: Adults £13 each, Children 3-16 years £9 each. Family (2+2) £38. Entrance from 6pm, performance at 7pm. Refreshments available. For more about all events go to

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Summer Fun Special And They’re Off! Pig Racing at Hatfield Park Farm The guys at Hatfield Park Farm have been busy training seven Mangalitsa pigs to become the “Magnificent Mangalitsa Racing Team.” If you know anything about pigs you will know they are a force to be reckoned with but luckily they are quite greedy and their stomachs rule. They will race down the paddock with their tea as the reward. After the races explore the brand new Goat Pass Challenge, a play area with rope walks, log stepping stones, tractor tyres to crawl through and a log tangle to clamber over. In the adjacent picnic area there’s space to let off steam or rest awhile.

A Taste of Paradise Wildlife Park Stagecoach Workshops

Paradise Wildlife Park is home to over 400 exotic animals, 3 adventure playgrounds, a woodland railway, a paddling pool and one of the largest soft play centres in Herts. From the end of July and during August the park will be hosting animal themed weekends to celebrate the amazing animals that call Paradise their home: 26th –27th July – Tapir Weekend 2nd –3rd August – Primate Weekend 9th –10th August – Birds Weekend 16th–17th August – Red Panda Weekend 23rd –24th August– Tiger Weekend 30th –31st August– Lion Weekend Book online to get £10 off. Use code: Fam10 (See ad on page 11) / 01992 470 490

Top Hat Summer Top Hat Stage School has a summer of Disney fun on offer which will give children the chance to star in a production of Mulan. The first of three summer schools will take place from 4-8 August at Wyllyotts Theatre, Darkes Lane in Potters Bar, with two more at the Sandpit Theatre at Sandringham School in St Albans from 11-15 August and 18-21 August. During each five-day course, students will learn the lines, songs and dance routines from Disney’s Mulan. The five-day courses, which last from 10am-4pm, cost £100 for four-to-five-yearolds and £150 for six-to-17-year-olds. Top Hat also runs seven, term-time stage schools in Herts to which it offers free taster sessions on the first day of term. / 01727 812666

CookCamp CookCamp offers school holiday cooking workshops for boys and girls aged 5 – 14 years at St Margaret’s School, Bushey from 10am – 3pm (or morning session 10am – 12.30pm) on 17th, 18th, 21st, 22nd July and 13th, 14th, 15th, 18th, 19th, 20th August. Whole day (£50) or half day (£25). Under 8s can only choose the half day option. The cost includes instructions, lunch, recipe cards and ingredients. CookCamp also hold term-time toddler and parent cooking sessions in Elstree. / 07989 743 357

Danelaw Education brings history to life

©Nick Molnar

E’XC’iting Activities at the XC For all things skate, be it flip-tricks, heel-flips or kick-flips do them at The XC in Hemel Hempstead from 28th July until 31st August from 10am to 10pm! Children from aged 8 years will have a great time and be guided by fully qualified instructors. As well as the indoor skatepark the XC offers caving, climbing, bouldering and a high ropes course. To find out more go to / 01442 507100


This summer take to the stage with Stagecoach. Summer schools are run by four local Stagecoach schools: Berkhamsted/ Hemel: 4 - 8 Aug; Letchworth: 28 Jul - 2 Aug; Potters Bar: 11 - 15 Aug; Welwyn-Hatfield: 4 - 8 Aug. Children don’t need to be divas, they just need energy and enthusiasm and the teachers supply the rest. Gradually gaining the children’s’ trust, so that they feel confident. Children have fun as they build essential skills such as speaking clearly and learning how to work as a team. See advert on page 9.

Danelaw Education offers a variety of activity days where children can have fun whilst they learn about their ancestors. Children will battle with the Saxons, voyage with the Vikings and conquer with the Normans. Activities may include cooking ancient recipes, meeting warriors and using ancient designs. With props and costumes, Danelaw’s imaginative approach will get kids hooked on history. Danelaw also offer archery, storytelling and birthday parties. / 07454 766 676.

Summer Safety


  he summer holidays are all about relaxing and having fun but there are dangers out there too and we want to keep our children safe and avoid unnecessary accidents. Here’s some expert advice to help you have a safe summer.

Play Safe in Your Garden As the weather improves children love to run around in the back garden or splash in the paddling pool to let off steam, but what about the risks? • If possible secure your garden so younger children can’t wander out into the road. • Keep garden tools locked away in a shed or other secure area. Never leave electrical equipment plugged in when not in use. • Keep all garden chemicals locked away and out of children’s reach. Don’t be tempted to transfer contents to food jars or bottles which a child could easily open. • Keep young children away from lit barbeques or bonfires. Barbeques will stay hot long after you have finished cooking. • Teach children to never eat anything growing in your garden unless you tell them it’s safe to. Find out more at • Watch children playing near or in water, especially two and three year olds who are more likely to drown at home or in a neighbour’s garden. Fill in, fence off or cover your pond if you have one and make sure your child cannot get close to your neighbour’s pond or water feature. • Babies can drown in as little as 5cm (2 inches) of water. Be sure to empty the paddling pool as soon as you’re finished using it.

Take it with you: It’s worthwhile putting together a handy pouch filled with some quick fixes just in case your little one takes a tumble or feels unwell when you are out and about. Items to include are: Antiseptic wipes, Calpol sachets, plasters, germolene and antihistamine cream (for bites and stings). Pop it all in a clear plastic zipped pouch so that you can whip it out of your bag as needed and don’t waste time rummaging for the items you need.

Information provided by The Child Accident Prevention Trust:

Stay Safe in the Sun Hermione Lawson of the British Skin Foundation explains ways to protect your young child from sunburn. We should protect our skin from the sun at any age, to avoid sun damage and the risk of developing skin cancer. Because children’s skin is more sensitive than adults we must be extra vigilant when it comes to skin protection. The first line of defense is staying in the shade. Keep children in the shade under an umbrella, tree or canopy between the hours of 11am and 3pm as this tends to be the time when the sun is at its strongest. Or, miss it all together by staying indoors. When outside children should also be covered up with protective clothing. A long sleeved t-shirt is ideal and a wide brimmed hat that protects their face, neck and ears with wrap-around sunglasses. Apply a high factor sunscreen on them about 15 to 30 minutes before going outside. For young children, we recommend a very generous application of SPF 50+ so that their skin gets the full benefit of the stated factor. Make sure you also choose a sunscreen with a high level of UVA protection, look for a four or five star rating or find the symbol with the letters ‘UVA’ inside a circle. Swimming and drying off will remove a lot of the sunscreen from the skin's surface. We suggest re-application at least every two hours or even more frequently if they are very active in the water, as their sunscreen will wear off quicker even if it is marked water resistant. For more information: The British Skin Foundation: NHS: and search ‘Child safety in the sun’ for more advice including ‘how to’ videos.

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Kids' Crafts


Child Health Top Tips How to help your child overcome wetting the bed   By Elisabeth Dolton

Exercises There are specific exercises that can strengthen or expand a child’s bladder. “Our doctor suggested that when my son needed to wee that I encourage him to wait about 10 minutes longer. This helped his bladder expand,” said Lisa, mum to three boys. Another exercise is stopping the flow for a few seconds during urination which can help to strengthen the muscles.

Lifting and night pants Although all children eventually gain bladder control at night, they do so at different ages, and many children over the age of five still frequently wet the bed. In fact, around 1 in 7 children aged five, and 1 in 20 children aged ten, are frequent bed-wetters. The majority of bed-wetting is inherited. For three out of four children, either a parent or close relative also wet the bed in childhood. Other causes are an overactive bladder or not enough of the hormone that regulates urine production. Researchers have found that deep sleepers are more likely to wet the bed, as the brain doesn’t get the signal that the bladder is full. Children sometimes don’t go to the toilet due to fears such as being scared of the dark. Starting to wet the bed after being dry can be due to emotional problems. Rarely, constipation, diabetes or a bladder infection can be the cause. There are a number of methods that can help the problem.

Drinking and eating “Avoid or limit foods that that are spicy or high in sugar or fat, including fizzy drinks,” says Alyson Carter, a Registered Nutritional Therapy Council Practitioner (www.nut4life. com). “These foods can irritate or inflame the bladder making it harder for a child to keep control.” Fresh foods, and calming foods such as oats, are recommended.  Alyson also advises restricting fluids from around 1 ½ hours before bedtime.

Support Don’t be embarrassed to broach the subject with your GP. He or she can test blood and urine samples to rule out any illness or infection, or refer you to a bed-wetting (enuresis) clinic.

Whilst, waking your child to go to the toilet and/or wearing night pants can increase confidence, some believe that both these should be avoided as they may disrupt the child’s own motivation to wake to use the toilet.

Medical treatment In persistent cases, desmopressin, a manufactured form of the hormone that decreases urine production, can be prescribed. The effects are short term and the problem is likely to reoccur when treatment is stopped. Editor’s note: Medication is worth considering for family holidays or for school or scout/ brownie residential trips.

Complementary therapies Several complementary and alternative therapies have been tried including acupuncture, chiropractic care, and hypnosis. Some parents have reported improvements but it is not guaranteed to help everyone.

• Make the bed in several layers, alternating a fitted sheet with a waterproof pad. This will save time and effort in the middle of the night. • Leave clean pyjamas and towels close to hand. • Make sure there are no hidden fears about getting up at night. For example, fear of the dark. Ensure that the route to the toilet is clear and leave the light on. • Protection. Use waterproof covers for the mattress and duvet and absorbent sheets. Use a moisturiser to prevent chaffing and soreness. • Reward your child for getting up in the night to use the toilet. Help your child to understand that doing this is an important step towards the ultimate goal of being dry at night. • Bedwetting can damage a child’s confidence. Be supportive and reassure them that bedwetting is common and that they will overcome it • Be sensitive to any family or school disruption that might be stressful. Do not allow siblings to tease a child who has wet the bed • Encourage your child’s co-operation. Give simple explanations about how the bladder works. They must go to the toilet before getting into bed. • Encourage your child to help change the wet sheets. They won’t enjoy it but it may provide the extra motivation needed to get them out of bed and to the toilet simply to avoid this chore.

Useful websites :

Re-training Bedwetting alarms help train your child to wake when they have a full bladder. The alarm’s sensor detects dampness and, eventually, the child’s brain learns to pay attention to bladder signals and wakes up naturally before wetting the bed. “They have been so easy to use, the girls had no problem with them and the message really got through,” said Kim, mum of two daughters. Every year 15 percent of children who wet the bed, become dry, with no intervention. They will all outgrow it eventually, but if you and your child are motivated to get dry, find the approach that suits your child best and stay positive.

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Summer What's On This is a selection of events and activities in Herts this summer. There are lots more to be found at We aim for accuracy but please remember to check with the venue before setting out in case details have changed.

Ready, Aim, Fire Hertford Museum, 18 Bull Plain, Hertford, SG14 1DT 01992 582686, 26 July - 10.30am-3.30pm (last entry 3pm). Meet The History Man demonstrating arms and weapons used through the ages. Storyteller, Art of Arms exhibition and crafts. Drop in

Reptilian Adventure

Free Events Hertford Castle Castle Street, Hertford, SG14 1HR 01992 55288 Discover Hertford Castle 20 July - 12-4pm Children’s art trail and treasure hunt. Adult landscape painting on the lawn, guided tours of the Castle and grounds. Rock at the Castle 3 August - 12.30- 7.30pm See the hottest local acts. Donations welcome Brass Band Concert & Open Day 17 August - 12-4pm Traditional concert on the lawn plus a chance to explore the Castle.

Broxbourne Community Open Day Bishops’ College, Churchgate, Cheshunt, EN8 9XQ 5 July - 2-5pm Live music, entertainment, kayaking, ride-on railway, inflatables, face painting & flower show. Free entry, some attractions may charge

Classics on the Common Harpenden Common, St Albans Road, Harpenden, AL5 1DT 30 July 1000 classic vehicles on display. Free to spectators

Courtyard Arts Centre Port Vale, Hertford, SG14 3AA 01992 509596 Courtyard’s Flying Circus Every Sun from 3-31 August - 2-5pm Make your own 3d circus model. Drop in art/ craft sessions, ending with circus performers on Sun 31st Aug.

Family Discovery Mornings St Albans Cathedral, The Abbey, Sumpter Yard , St Albans, AL1 1BY 01727 860780


Thursdays 7- 28 August - Meet in the North Transept. Arrive before 11.30am to complete all the activities 10am-12.30pm. Trail with activities, fun craft session. Ages 3-11 (adult must stay). Donations welcome.

Great British Tennis Weekend David Lloyd Hatfield, Mosquito Way, Hatfield, AL10 9AX 19 - 20 July - 2-5pm Tennis activities for all ages & abilities.

Hatfield Forest Takeley, Bishop’s Stortford, CM22 6NE Wild Wednesdays Wednesdays 23 July - 27 August - 11am-3pm. Kids’ activities starting from the big tent based on 50 things to do before you’re 11 3/4. Medieval Village Life 2 - 3 August - 10am-5pm The company of Saint Joseph re-enactment group invite you to visit their medieval tented village. Find out how people lived, worked and fought a thousand years ago. Drop in. Donations welcome.

Lions Fun Day Broadway Gardens, Broadway, Letchworth Garden City, SG6 3TA 19 July - 10am-4pm Stalls, fun fair rides & welly wanging!

PLAY IN THE PARKS 15 parks & open spaces across the St Albans District, 24 July-29 Aug Open access play scheme for ages 3-12. Sport, arts & crafts and workshops run by local organizations.

Re-visiting the Civil War Cedars Park, Theobalds Lane, Cheshunt, EN8 8RH 01992 785555 ext 5904 24 - 25 August - 10.30am-5pm. Re-enacting life in England during the 1640s. A living history camp, a military camp. Watch cannon and cavalry, join in a drill, storytelling. Small battles at 11am & 3.15pm

Balls Wood, Hertford Heath, SG13 7PW 13 August - 9.30am-11.30am Search for grass snakes and slow worms. Not suitable for pushchairs.

RIVER LEE COUNTRY PARK 08456 770600 A Walk in the Park Starting at Turnford Brook car park, off Cheshunt Wash, Cheshunt EN8 0LU 3 Aug - 10.30am-12.30pm Take a walk along the western side of River Lee Country Park. Ice Cream Family Cycle Ride Starting at Old Mill & Meadows car park, Mill Lane, Broxbourne EN10 6QT (Rail: Broxbourne) 10 Aug – 10.30am-3.30pm Off road leisurely 15 mile circular cycle ride. Café lunch stop or bring a picnic. Buy an icecream at the end - or hot chocolate!

River Ver Day Verulamium Park, St Michael’s Street, St Albans, AL3 4SW 26 July - 10am-4pm River-themed craft activities, river dipping and more. Drop in.

Soldiers’ Stories The Museum of St Albans, Hatfield Road, St Albans, AL1 3RR 01727 819340 9 August - 1-5pm Step back in time 100 years and meet two Gunners from the Royal Artillery. Children must be with an adult. Small charge for craft activity

Teddy Bears Picnic Lydekker Park, Sun Lane, Harpenden, AL5 4EG 16 August - 11am-2pm Children’s entertainer; face painters; bouncy castle, two free sessions at 11.30 & 1pm from the Drama Llamas. Young footballers can learn skills with 1st Kicks Soccer.

WALTHAM ABBEY GARDENS Waltham Abbey, Essex EN9 1XQ (Rail: Waltham Abbey) 08456 770600

Wild About Wetlands 29 July – 10am-3.30pm Pond dipping, dragonfly quizzes, arts and crafts, treasure trail. See owls, bats and bees.


(Indoors & Open air) Broxbourne Civic Hall High Street, Hoddesdon, EN11 8BE 01992 441946 Teddy Bears Picnic 19 August - 12-3pm Show with songs, games & stories. Competitions, arts & crafts and teddy bear hospital. Ages 3-7. £5.50 (£4.75 in advance), Family £17, Under 2s free

Festival on the Field Sir John Lawes School, Manland Way, Harpenden, AL5 4QP 5 July – 12 noon-10pm Starring some of the UK’s best tribute acts. Tributes to Madness, Rihanna, Katy Perry & One Direction. £15.50, 5-17 yrs £8.50, Under 5s free, Family £43. Pre-booked parking £5, Pre booked gazebo pitches £55 (supply own gazebo)

Gadebridge Park Hemel Hempstead, Hemel Hempstead, HP1 3AQ, Hugless Douglas 2 August - 11am & 2.30pm Based on the book by David Melling, with music, puppetry & high energy storytelling. Ages 3-7. Open air. £4.50 Is That a Balloon? 12 July - 11am & 2.30pm Can you really make anything out of balloons? Watch the story unfold with the help of balloons and puppets alike. Open air. £4.50, Dacorum Card holder £3

Harpenden Public Halls Southdown Road, Harpenden, AL5 1PD 01582 767525 Marty MacDonald’s Farm 22 August - 11.30am Puppet show for ages 3-7 set amongst farmyard animals including Pongo the Pig (voiced by CBeebies’ Justin Fletcher), MollyMoo the Cow and Sheena the Sheep. £10, Child £8

Hatfield House Hatfield, AL9 5NQ 01707 287101

Battle Proms 19 July - Gates open 4.30pm Music with choreographed aerial displays, cannon fire, cavalry displays & fireworks. £40 (£35 until midnight the day before the concert). 5-15 yrs £17. Ages 4 & under free. Folk by the Oak 20 July - Gates open 1pm A festival of folk’s finest acts. ​£40 (£36 advance). 5-15 yrs £17. Ages 4 & under free. Family £98 The Pantaloons’ History of Britain 28 August - 7pm Open air theatre. £12.50. Child £10 Alice in Wonderland 31 August - 3pm Hilarious musical show for ages 3-12 (outdoors). Children are invited to come dressed in their best ‘Wonderland’ fashion. White Rabbit? Alice? Mad Hatter? £12. Child £10. Family £40

Shenley Park Radlett Lane, Shenley, WD7 9DW 01923 852629, Music to Watch the Flowers By 27 July - Noon-6pm Open air family picnic concert. Jazz, easy listening and rock music. Punch & Judy, Magic and bouncy castles Dogs on leads welcome. £5 adults, £3 children, under 3’s free. The Tempest 26 July - 7pm The Pantaloons put their hilarious twist on Shakepeare’s tale of shipwrecks, sorcerers and silly servants. Expect music, magic and mayhem. Open air. £12.50, Under 16s £8, Family £35 The Three Musketeers 24 August - 2.30pm start, gates open 1 hour before. Join D’Artagnan on his quest to become a Musketeer. With original songs and swordfights. Open air. £12.50, child £9. Under 5’s free. The Old Town Hall Theatre The Old Town Hall, High Street, Hemel Hempstead, HP1 3AE 01442 228091 Can Fish Drink Tea? 16 August - 11am & 2.30pm Puppet animation, clowning & live music. Open air in The Old Town Hall Arches Enclosure. £4.50, Dacorum Card holder £3

Verulamium Park St Michael’s Street, St Albans, AL3 4SW A Midsummer Night’s Dream 16-18 July / 24-26 July - 7.30pm Shakespeare in the open air and set in the 1950s. Next to the Inn on the Park. £7-12. Babes in arms free

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Wimpole Estate Arrington, Royston, SG8 0BW 01223 206000 National Trust Box Office: 0844 249 1895 Peter Pan 29 August - 7.30-10pm Open-air theatre, booking essential. Bring a chair or rug to sit on. BBQ from 6.30pm or bring your own picnic. £14, 5-17 yrs £10, Under 5s free, Family £46

Wyllyotts Theatre Wyllotts Place, Darkes Lane, Potters Bar, EN6 2HN 01707 645005 Tiny Mites at the Seaside 21 August - 11.30am & 2pm Includes craft workshop, then 50 mins of fun, song, dance, bubbles and audience participation. Ages 7+ £7.50

Camps & Workshops Act Now! Trestle Arts Base, Russet Drive, St Albans, AL4 0JQ 01727 850950 28 July to 8 August 9.30am-4.30pm Musical theatre course. 7-19 yrs, No experience needed. Production of Bugsy Malone with 3 performances.

Blast Summer Theatre School The Rhodes Arts Complex & Bishops Stortford Museum, 1-3 South Road, Bishops Stortford, CM23 3JG 01279 651746 17- 23 August - 10am-4pm For wannabe performers and technicians aged 11 - 18. Create a full-scale theatre production for a one-off performance. Performance 8pm (23 Aug) £130 (T-Shirt included). Tickets to performance: £10, Conc £7

DRAMA LLAMAS 11th August 9.45am - Westminster Lodge, Holywell Hill, St Albans, AL1 2DL 13th August 10am - Harpenden Trust Hall, Southdown Road, A5 1PS 29th August 10am - Westminster Lodge, Holywell Hill, St Albans, AL1 2DL Classes are 40 minutes. £7.50 (£4 siblings over 2 and £2 siblings 12-24mth). Siblings under 12 months free! Booking essential.


Summer What's On Go Kids Holiday Camp Gosling Sports Park, Stanborough Road, Welwyn Garden City, AL8 6XE 01707 331056, 21 July-29 August 9am-3.30pm (8am-6pm with extended hrs). 3 yrs: 9am-1pm. Activities range from trampolining to skiing, badminton, dodgeball, golf, football, spinning & athletics. Ages 3-16. £12-23 per session. Extended hrs extra.

Hoodwinked Theatre Workshop The Rudolf Steiner School, Langley Hill, Kings Langley, WD4 9HG 4-8 August - 10am - 2.30pm Perform a musical tale of Robin Hood. Ages 7-13. £100

Stanborough Park Stanborough Road, Welwyn Garden City, AL8 6DQ 01707 379860 Introduction to Sailing 28 July-29 August - 9.30am–4.30pm A 5 day introduction to sailing. Ages 8-15. £279 per week Introduction to Fishing 1, 12, 27 August - 10am-1pm No experience needed. 10 yrs+. £35 per session. Includes basic equipment to keep

Play in a Week The Old Town Hall Theatre, The Old Town Hall, High Street, Hemel Hempstead, HP1 3AE 01442 228 091, 11-14 August - 10am-4pm Fun, interactive drama activities. Children will create a Superhero tale. Performance for family and friends on the last day. Ages 7-12. £110. £60 for additional siblings

Tick Tock Music Thunder Base Scout Hut, Chene Drive, St Albans, AL3 5QP 30 July, 20 & 27 August - 9.45am Pre-school music class. £6 per session per child. Sibling discounts. Book and pay for in advance.

Special Events Bat WalkS Hatfield Forest, Takeley, Bishop’s Stortford, CM22 6NE Brian Dunn, 01279 870678 12, 20, 28 August - 8-9.30pm


Guided walk. Don’t forget your torch! Booking essential. Accompanied children over 8 welcome. £8. Child £6

Card and Print Making Workshop The Henry Moore Foundation Perry Green, Much Hadham, SG10 6EE 01279 844104 31 July - 12-4pm Make your own card or textile print using Moore’s techniques. Drop in. £11.30, Conc £9, 5-18 yrs £5.90, Under 5s free, Family £28.50.

Children’s Pet Show Broxbourne Civic Hall, High Street, Hoddesdon, Hertfordshire, EN11 8BE 01992 441946, 14 August - From 1pm Creepy crawlies and all two, three & fourlegged fluffy friends are welcome. Bollescroft House opposite Civic Hall. £1.50 per class entered or 4 classes £5

Chilli Festival Benington Lordship Gardens, Benington Lordship, Stevenage, SG2 7BS 0870 126 1708 24-25 August - 10am-5pm Chilli products & plants, delicious cooking & refreshments. Face painting, sand art. £7.50, 12-16s £2.50, Under 12s free. Free parking

Classic Car & Military Vehicle Show Weekend Langleybury Children’s Farm, Langleybury Lane, Nr Kings Langley, WD4 8RW 01923 270603, 9-10 August - 11am-5pm Includes live band, BBQ & bar.

Chorleywood Village Day Chorleywood Common, Chorleywood, Rickmansworth, WD3 12 July - 12-4pm Funfair, stalls, displays, food & more.

Climb a Tree Wimpole Estate, Arrington, Royston, SG8 0BW 01223 206000, 9 August Climb into a tree’s canopy using ropes, knots and karabiners, securely attached in a harness. Take the zip wire back down. £18

Dacorum Steam & Country Fayre Green Croft Farm, Potten End, Nr. Hemel Hempstead HP1 2SG

26- 27 July - 10am-5pm Theme: heavy horses. Proceeds to the Hospice of St Francis. £7. Child / Conc £4. Family £15

Dancing Dogs Riverside Shopping Centre, Riverside, Hemel Hempstead, HP1 1BT 26 July Richard Curtis, Crufts Champion, with his amazing dogs performing to music with brilliant tricks.

HeARTwood Festival Heartwood Forest, Sandridge, St Albans, AL4 9DQ 23 August - 11am-4pm Familiy activities: bird-box making, willow weaving, teddy bears picnic & guided walks.

Hitchin Lavender Cadwell Farm, Ickleford, Hitchin, SG5 3UA 01462 434343 1 July- 14 Sept - 10am-5pm Children love to run up and down the rows of lavender! Pick a bunch to take home. Refreshments. Open Mon- Sun. £4. Under 14s free

Mad Hatters Tea Party Frogmore Paper Mill, Fourdrinier Way, Apsley, Hemel Hempstead, HP3 9RY 01442 234600 7 August - 1-4pm Storytelling, things to make & games. Booking essential. £8 per family

RYE-ASSIC ADVENTURE PARK Rye Road, Hoddesdon, EN11 0EH 01992 460895 Open Mon-Sun - 9.30am-5pm Session 1 – 9.30am-12noon Session 2 – 12noon-2pm Session 3 – 2.30-5pm Lots of dinosaur fun with rides and games. Refreshments available. SessionS last for 2 ½ hours but if there is space this time limit can be extended. Booking essential. Child £3.95 weekdays, £4.95 weekends (prices per session). Adults & under 1s free.

Rye Meads Nature Reserve Rye Road, Stanstead Abbotts, EN11 0EH Mini Waterworld 19 July - 11am-1pm Search for pond life. Then create a giant mural. Ages 6-11. £5. Wex members £3. Booking essential.

Royston Kite Festival

Letchworth Outdoor Pool

Therfield Heath, Nr Baldock Road, Royston, SG8 5BG 3 August - 10.30am-4.30pm Entertainment, kite making competition, funfair. £2, Children free. Free parking

Norton Common, Icknield Way, Letchworth, SG6 4UF 01462 684 673 Until 7 Sept – times vary 50m heated pool. Toddler pool. Refreshments. Entry ratios apply: 1 child under 5 to 1 adult, 2 children under eight to 1 adult. Open: Mon-Sun. Peak Casual Swim £5.20 Child/Conc £2.50

Water play & Swimming Harpenden Outdoor Paddling Pool Rothamsted Park, Leyton Road, Harpenden, AL5 2HU 01582 460683, Until 7 Sept - 11am-5pm Open every day.

Hitchin Swimming Centre Fishponds Road, Hitchin, SG5 1HA 01462 441646, Outdoor Pool 1 July-7 Sept - 8am-6.30pm 50m heated pool and toddler pool. 8am-6.30pm. Open: Mon-Sun. Various prices.


Ware Lido Ware Priory, Priory Street, Ware, SG12 0DE 01920 460703 until 31 August – times vary Heated open air pool, refreshment kiosk. Open Mon-Sun. Contact venue entry prices


Splash Park Verulamium Park, St Michael’s Street, St Albans, AL3 4SW 01727 868227 Until 14 Sept - 10am-6pm 12 water features. 12 yrs & under. Refreshments available. Open Mon-Sun FREE

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Summer Fun Special

Printed by Warners Midlands Plc, Bourne, Lincs., PE10 9PH. Copyright Families Herts 2014. Any original materials submitted for publication are sent at owner’s own risk and, while every care is taken, neither Families nor its agents accept liability for loss or damage. Families Herts is part of a group, established in 1990 and headed by Families South West. All franchised magazines in the group are independently owned and operated under license. We take care preparing this magazine but the publishers and distributors cannot be held responsible for the claims of the advertisers, nor for the accuracy of the contents or for any consequences.

Families Herts Jul-Aug 2014  

Summer Fun Special