Cycling at Sutton Bank National Park Centre

A few weeks ago, we spent a couple of nights camping in Yorkshire. We enjoy cycling together as a family but sadly, it’s quite rare to find somewhere off road where the girls can ride safely. Locally, we cycle in the Forest of Dean but we were keen to try somewhere new, and Sutton Bank National Park Centre in Yorkshire looked ideal. About Sutton Bank National Park Centre Cycling is actively encouraged in Sutton Bank National Park. You can hire or even buy a bike there, or bring your own. We brought ours, but realised when we were there that Lia’s…

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7 tips for family mountain bike adventures

This is a collaborative post.  We’ve had a bit of a breakthrough over the past fortnight. After eight months of riding a bike, Lia has finally mastered starting and stopping. Being unable to do so didn’t stop her cycling, but it stopped me. I tended to run alongside her bike to help her rather than cycling myself. But now, we’re ready for proper cycling. So, here are my top tips for family mountain bike adventures. 1. Get the right bikes A good bike makes all the difference for a child who is learning to cycle. I personally swear by light…

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12 things you need to know about cycling in the Forest of Dean

Two seasoned mountain bikers stopped beside the trail for a drink. Covered in mud and exhausted from pushing themselves, they watched as a tiny tot pedalled past. The beauty of the Forest of Dean cycle tracks is that they really do cater for everyone. Here’s what you need to know before you pump up the tyres and head for the hills. 1. Where to start There are various locations in the Forest of Dean to pick up the cycle trails. Head to the tourist information website for links to the different routes. Alternatively, you can pick up a cycling guide…

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Attracting wild birds to the garden with boxwild

One of my favourite things about where we live is that we back onto a nature reserve. It’s only small, but it’s full of trees, birds and wildlife. It’s a quiet estate and we rarely get disturbed by neighbours or passers by. But occasionally, the owls make a bit of a racket. They are definitely the sort of noisy neighbours I can cope with, it’s a lovely place to be. The children’s big bird gift box from Boxwild With the nature reserve so close by, I’ve always thought it would be lovely to put some food out for the birds. And when Libby…

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A morning stroll around the Walled Gardens at Croome Court

The girls leant their bikes against the wall and ventured into the secret garden. It was like stepping into the Georgian era. Being transported back to a time when the produce from this expansive garden would feed everyone on the Croome Estate. The history of the Walled Gardens at Croome Court 17 years ago, a couple by the name of Chris and Karen were looking for a project. The gardener’s cottage at Croome was perfect. Derelict and set in a vast plot of land, the property inspired visions of a transformation into an eight-bedroomed house. There would be a swimming pool, jacuzzi and tennis courts.…

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Dinosaurs at Eastnor Castle

Rex the baby Tyrannosaurus was off his lead, surrounded by children when it happened. Nobody could know for sure what triggered it. Something in the crowd perhaps, a sudden noise. A baby crying. And suddenly, he was off. Running towards the kids, roaring like a crazy beast. They scattered everywhere, screaming for mercy. The dinosaur show The dinosaur show at Eastnor Castle featured a person in a very realistic dinosaur suit. The ‘keeper’ presented the show, starting off with ‘Rex’ on a lead. He was introduced, complete with lots of educational facts about dinosaurs. That’s when the fun started. Rex…

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Get ready for a summer of swimming with Konfidence

So many of my favourite memories from last summer involve being around water. From the paddling pool on the decking to building sandcastles on a beach to swimming in a lake. And on every occasion, Konfidence products have been there to keep the girls safe. So it’s a real privilege to be working with Konfidence even more this year as official Konfidence swimologists. About Konfidence Konfidence is a family business that makes a vast range of children’s swimming products. On a family holiday in 1996, Andy and Caroline realised that buoyancy aids were too heavy for children. They needed a solution…

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