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American-style summer camps

(17 Posts)
Storm15 Sat 24-Jan-15 11:24:17

Can anyone personally recommend any residential American-style summer camps in the UK? Would like something quite outdoorsy.... My kids are growing out of / bored of the day camps I usually book them into so was thinking I might see if they'd like to do a 4 / 5 night residential camp if they exist over here?

mummymeister Sat 24-Jan-15 12:28:49

PGL - they are brilliant. they take children from 7 to 17 and put them into age appropriate groups - 7 - 10, 10 - 13 and 13 - 16/7. they have them all over the Uk and over midweek breaks or full weeks. all my 3 have been on them since they were 7 every year (eldest now 16) . they are very well staffed the accommodation is good and they have 1 or 2 activities in the morning, 1 or 2 in the afternoon then games etc in the evening. we like the one at Osmington Bay or the one in Devon but depends on the age of your kids. mine have also been to the one up in the midlands - their biggest one but didn't like it as much so would suggest you start with one of the smaller ones first. they even offer escorted travel.

Storm15 Sat 24-Jan-15 13:11:49

Great thank you. I was looking for something in the South / South West so Devon could be perfect. One of ours will be just 7 - do you think he'd be OK?

mummymeister Sat 24-Jan-15 14:31:02

absolutely. they take a lot of care with the younger ones - a greater ratio of "groupees" (that's what the staff are known as!) they don't encourage calls home but if your youngest is worried then they will do this. they put the kids together in rooms sleeping 4 or 6 and make sure they put similar kids together. also before you go you can request a pen friend and they match you up with someone there in your age group at the same time and will room them together as well. they really are the best at what they do.

Storm15 Sat 24-Jan-15 15:08:14

Sounds great! Thank you.

SharonL81 Tue 03-Mar-15 12:14:19

Hello! I'd personally recommend XUK Activity, my 2 children have been going there for years!! The staff are lovely and the activities are fantastic (it is a multi activity camp and very outdoorsy). The camp has a family feel to it which really helped my children settle (especially during their first year). It really is a great camp!

cartoonsaveme Sun 15-Mar-15 23:06:59

I worked for Pgl years ago and every groupie I ever met really looked after the kids. They were brilliant with the young ones, lots were teachers in training getting experience

mrsmosquito Thu 09-Apr-15 20:43:49

My kids did PGL for years and really loved it. Amazing how they grew in confidence in just a few days!

JimmyCorkhill Thu 09-Apr-15 20:51:29

I was a groupie for PGL. Your children will be very well looked after. We got the children up, took them to meals, spent time getting to know them, sat with them if they were homesick, dried their wet clothes, helped them with their money at tuckshop... The staff did nightshifts too which is patrolling the dorms/chalets all evening and took it in turns to sleep in a room close by and the children knew they could knock on the door at any time.

[[ PGL Hillcrest is aimed at younger children (7-13).

JimmyCorkhill Thu 09-Apr-15 20:51:49

PGL Hillcrest

paddythepooch Sat 25-Jul-15 07:02:39

Do kids usually go with a pal or siblings or by themselves?

chrome100 Thu 30-Jul-15 11:10:13

I second PGL. I used to go every summer as a child and abosutely loved it. I have such fond memories of the holidays, getting to know other children, doing activities and gaining confidence. You can't beat it.

PKPopsy Sat 08-Aug-15 18:45:08

In my experience XUK is competent but not really on a par with other camps around. There were 170 children there when my DD went - way too many. Some of the counsellors were totally disinterested (one of them told a 17 year old in my DD's group to F* off) and the quality of the activities was pretty substandard. There are very few native English speakers attending which to me makes it more of a learning English camp than an activity camp. Also they are quite money grabbing - apparently if someone breaks something all the kids have to pay for it. My recommendation is Mill on the Brue. Only goes up to 14 yo but they only take 60 children, are amazingly welcoming and warm (eg someone forgot their sleeping bag and they gave him one of theirs, no charge), activities are brilliant - they really push them to do things they are a bit scared of, but all in a safe and controlled manner. I just wish I knew about it sooner and they could have had more years.

SharonL81 Thu 04-Feb-16 14:18:05

I'm really surprised to read that about XUK! shock They have always been very professional and my children love their staff! I gave my children the opportunity to try a different camp this year to see if they fancied a change but they didn't like the thought of not seeing their XUK friends from all over the world this summer!

mayred Wed 25-May-16 14:31:51

I would recommend FFL. They only have a limited number of places. Children learn curriculum linked courses and have a lot of fun activities.
I have an image that I can share with you.

lifeisunjust Sun 29-May-16 17:20:08

YHA and if you are on a very low income, you can get bursaries.

cissyfuss Mon 01-Aug-16 11:20:34

A good friend's children both went to ATE year on year and she rates them highly... I'm considering for next year... good mix of activities on offer

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