Summer school/camp..(29 Posts)
Due to work it again looks like we will not be taking a Summer holiday. Thought my 8 and 9yo DS and DD might like a week away at summer camp.
Anybody any tips on what to look for etc?
My friend's children had a great time at Little Canada on the Isle of Wight.
Lots of sporting activities, and young, enthusiastic, but well-qualified leaders.
If you have views as to whether they should be together or apart for the majority of the week, check whether this is possible.
Please let us know what company you plump for, and come back with a review.
Mine do Daycamps at Lakeside, which are fantastic; but I don't think they do residentials for that age-group.
Camp Beaumont and PGL do; but I don't have any advice on choosing.
If you find a company you like though, do check on here as both companies tend to post high list prices, and then offer massive reductions later on: so someone might have an offer.
I have taken a Y5/6 school group to the PGL centre at Borreatton Park (sp?) and they had a fantastic time.
No personal experience sending individual children there, but it is a well managed facility, and the staff there go out of the way to make sure the children have a great holiday.
Roisin, I was thinking they would get more out of a residental camp if they were split up (they are 8 and 9)
Looked at this for ds and a week in a friends stable for dd!
My DD - then 9yo - went on a PGL holiday at Boreatton Park last summer. She did it on her own but soon made friends with the other girls in her dormitory. She did pony trekking beginnners, which involved half of each day with horses and the other half doing various multi-activity sports.
She had an absolutely fantastic time and came back brown as a berry and really self-assured and confident. With a huge pile of laundry!
I was a mess for most of the week, wondering if she was ok. I found websites and blogs where former staff of PGL talked about their time workiong there and it was all positive which was reassuring.
She'd love to go again - she would rather do full-day pony trekking but she doesn't have enough experience yet for the PGL holiday so this summer she's going to do a local 3-day horse-related activity.
So I would happily recommend PGL.
Oh yes, not a problem if you're planning to send them to different locations
I would always choose to put my boys separately: They get on OK with each other, but enjoy having time apart too! But as they are very close in age, sometimes they end up in groups together.
Sports Academy looks great.
My DS enjoyed PGL and there are some special offers on at the moment if you aren't fussy about the week. I wouldn/t try to split them up though as most children go with friends/siblings.
Mine go to Mill on the Brue and love it so much they talk about it all year. They do residential from age 8 upwards.
It is truly fab, and I love the fact that it isn't a chain and isn't run for profit, which makes it all feel a bit more personal.
My son went to Camp Beaumont and really enjoyed it (not residential, or at least not for his then age group). If we had the money again I'd send him for another wekk this summer.
DS,then age 7, nearly 8,went to Camp Beaumont (Kingswood)as a residential, not knowing anyone (what was I thinking?). He had been away overnight many times, school trips, cubs etc. He had a fab time, I was a nervous wreck. They dont allow you to tel for the first three days so the kids dont get homesick. when I did get to speak with DS he was a gibbering wreck. I phoned back to speak with the staff immediately. Turns out they were up at 7.00, on the go all day and going to bed at 9.30 (wtf???) and then the kids were talking. DS was in a big room with about 12 kids. At the time he belived in rules (for other people! not me, lol) always did exactly what they were told to do ie. stop talking at lights out. It really stressed him out. The leaders got a grip and all was sorted the next night when I spoke with him. Having said that DS would go again in a flash, he still talks about it now.
Mine have all been to PGL. They've stayed at several of the centres and each was a positive experience. The accommodation is strictly girls or boys only, so if you sent them together they would be housed in separate sleeping accommodation. Then it's up to them if they want to be together during the day. Some of the PGL centres run different courses at the same time, so they could choose to both be at the same centre but not see much of each other, if that's what you prefer.
DD always went on her own, while DS2 and DS3 always went together.
Anothr vote for PGL here. My ds went when he was 8, 9 then again at 10, every time with a friend.
Have been deliberating about sending my 11 year old to summer camp beaumont (Pinewood Sands site) this year but just read an awful review on dooyoo.co.uk which has put me off. My daughter is not the most confident and very concerned the young staff are not quite right for being in charge of our 'babies'! Anybody had an 'experience'?
Niknaks11, my DD has been at KidsKlub since 6.5 for first one, then 2, weeks. This summer she'll be away for 5 weeks in total with at one point only a night at home between 4 weeks. She thinks this is great - she has always had a great time and is too busy playing to talk to me . Find one you're comfortable with, there are lots of options (including abroad but in English).
Daughter have been going to Supercamp Day camps for years. She is 12 1/2 and wants to go to a 7 day Holiday Camp this summer. I found Kingswood Camp in Isle of Wight and Grosvenor Hall. I want to book both weeks but cannot find any decent reviews. I saw one post about Grosvenor Hall last summer and the rating wasn't good at all. The kids didn't really have a structured activities and very little food.
Anyone know of this Camp? I am reluctant to book as I cannot see any good reviews that is recent.
Ds2 had a brilliant time with www.superweeks.co.uk/ age10
YHA camps: www.yhasummercamps.co.uk/
My dd went several times and preferred the normal one over the Go Extreme. The extreme sports, being more costly, meant that most of the time was spent hanging around waiting her turn on the quad bike, whereas with canoeing there was more actual canoeing IYSWIM.
My two went to PGL last year. They stayed at Liddington as it is close to me, and I knew I could get to them if I needed to. DD was only 7 then, but stayed in a room with her big sister. I needn't have worried, as they loved it and are going back for another week this year. However, this time they're off to Boreatton Park ( 2 1/2 hours from my house). But the centre looks amazing, and they're excited about all the opportunities.
My youngest is also going away on a Bushcraft holiday with one of her best friends. God knows why she wants to, as she's not exactly the outdoors type. But there's a group of 5 of them going, and I'm sure she'll have a blast. Bushcraft
DD1 is going to do a netball camp, organised by the English Netball Association. That's not residential though. They're both also doing a week's summer school through their dance school.
I wouldn't mind, but I don't actually need all that much holiday childcare (I need 1 week, that's all) - I'm a teacher! The girls are only doing it all because they're going with friends, and they want to!! Costing me a bloody fortune .
My son (10yo) went to Kingswood (previously CampBeaumont) last summer at the Isle of Wight, it was horrific. He called me on the first night at 4am homesick and it sounded like a funfair, all the boys were awake. He was put in a room with boys much older than him, he got bullied and assaulted (whipped with a metal belt by a 14yo) on the third night, racially abused and Kingswood staff covered it up. It went on so long (circa 1am) he filmed it on his phone. He went to get help but no staff were around, he had to get help from the older boys (15-16yos). The staff ultimately intimidated him to remove the video footage on his phone claiming "child protection issues" but in my view to cover up their blatant lack of care and availability to the children. They went further to remove him from camp (I had to pick him up on the Thursday of a sun-sun booking), they told me nothing of the assault(s) it was only when my son, sobbing all the way home, told me about the attack and the video and I checked iCloud and his trash can and found tons of it. The boys using his phone night after night filming as late as 3am, 4am in the morning. Then final footage my son took of him gettin abused and assault none of which did Kingswood tell me about. They just said he was banging on doors in the early hours ( which he did when he was looking for help and the staff was not available). On the end of the video footage you can hear a member of staff finally come into the room when my 10yo son was weeping in pain on the floor after being whipped by a 14yo. He knew exactly what helped because everyone else in the room told him what had happened, but Kingswood staff chose to cover up a crime and intimidate a child in doing so. I had to go to the police eventually as Kingswood chose to call my bluff in that I didn't have the footage which they believed had been deleted. The child who had whipped my son had been left to continue his holiday and his parents were non the wiser whereas my son was left traumatised and thinking he was a criminal.
I also reported to OFSTED but I've now found out that commercial organisations, even residential ones, who look after children over 8 are not bound by any regulatory body including OFSTED. They are just advised to join voluntarily. Therefore although the child assaulted my son, Kingswood does not get brought to task!!! That was such a shock to me. I sent my child in good faith expecting a standard of provision of service and duty of care. I've dropped charges on the boy because his parents were as shocked as I was and I don't wish to criminalise a sleep deprived silly ignorant child, but I'm furious Kingswood will keep packing kids in like sardines in my view to make lots of money and provide minimum service.
Mary 21 - I'd second what you said:
"Ds2 had a brilliant time with www.superweeks.co.uk/ age10"
but also extending to ages up to 15.
Nothing like the horror story from Ryansma. I hope this was reported to the police and social services. Enough of these incidents and someone will have to take action.
I'm sorry for the experience you and your son have had and thanks for sharing your story.
I'm not sure about grosvenor hall or isle of weight, but west runton do a fabulous job
My two love XUK Activity. It's similar to PGL/Kingswood but is multi activity and a small family run company! They are Ofsted regulated, we haven't ever had a problem with them!
If you want something other than the PGL type, there are a range of sports, drama, music, tech and other creative courses at Uppingham
You could book them on to different courses running at the same time, to give that bit of separation you want; they'd see each other at mealtimes and evening recreation, but then sleep in separate girls and boys wings.
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