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Whitehall Junior School

Happiness at the heart of learning

'Weekend Wonders' Extra Ideas

Dear Families,

 

As you will already be aware, your child has a ‘Weekend Wonders’ passport card which encourages you to spend time together enjoying the simple things in life. In addition to this, we thought it would be helpful to offer some further suggestions of weekend ideas which you could enjoy exploring as a family. Please read on below to find out about some of the attractions our staff have enjoyed visiting (some may be free, other sites will charge). As always, we would encourage you to plan any visit in advance and suggest you check online to confirm opening hours and any periods of closure so that you do not have a wasted trip.

 

If you do visit any of the suggestions below, feel free to share with us. We have a display board in the hall which we would happily add to so you can promote your enjoyable visit with the rest of our school community.

 

Please also be mindful that if you are a resident in the Borough, you can register for a Hillingdon Gold Card https://archive.hillingdon.gov.uk/article/17747/Using-your-card which gives preferential parking (or discounted charges) in some of our local car parks and venues, to include Ruislip Lido, for example.

 

We have a wealth of experiences on our door step so happy exploring!

 

London Inspiration

Before you head into London, Mr Wicks has recommended a couple of online sources which you may find helpful when planning your day out.  Firstly, there’s a YouTube channel called Joolz Guides. It’s a London tour guide who posts quick 15 minute tours of areas around the city with interesting sites that children would be interested to see. He gives a lot of information which you could impart to your child/children. All of it only costs the price of travel.

 

Another channel is Londonist. They make smaller bite size videos about lesser known London attractions. They have a series of videos called ‘Secrets of the Underground’ where they tell you all about hidden and interesting things on the Tube that most commuters miss - maybe go hunting for some of these as a family!

Mr Wicks

 

The Postal Museum, London

Take a visit to London’s Postal Museum where you can choose to ride an underground mail train and create a stamp using your own face! There is a family-friendly café and gift shop at this excellent museum and the site is split across two buildings, literally over the road from one another. The museum does not take long to explore and there is normally a child-friendly trail of some sort to follow. For those of you with young children, the excellent play space, ‘Sorted!’ enables them to sort and deliver post, run a post office and ‘work’ in the sorting office. Well worth a visit! Find out all the latest information at: https://www.postalmuseum.org/

Mrs Upfield

 

Ruislip Lido and Virginia Water

I would recommend our local Ruislip Lido. There is a great pathway around the lido so it’s good for a walk at any time of the year. There is also a café and plenty of play space for children. They can play in the sand or take a ride on the train. If you are a Hillingdon resident, you can access a separate car park closest to the site.  https://www.familiesonline.co.uk/local/hillingdon/listing/ruislip-lido

 

Also, I suggest a wander round Virginia Water. It’s a beautiful place for a family day out. The only cost (if you don’t buy food or drink) is the car parking. This is approximately £12 for five hours. 

http://www.windsorgreatpark.co.uk/en/experiences/virginia-water

Mrs Symms

 

Black Park

Take a visit to Black Park in South Buckinghamshire which covers over 500 acres of woodland, heathland and open space.  You can go for a walk, jog or cycle on one of the park's many marked trails or if you’re a dog owner, it is a beautiful location to walk your four legged friend.  Visiting this location early in the morning is majestic as it is extremely peaceful and it is the best time to spot wildlife!  It is an amazing location for families as young children can explore the woodland adventure play area, sports can be played in the open spaces or you can even just go for a relaxing stroll in the forest before grabbing a yummy ice cream next to the lake.  Black Park also offers the attraction Go Ape which is a treetop challenge boasting a mighty 1km course including a brilliant 170 metre zip wire. With Black Park offering so much, it is well worth a visit! Find out all the latest information at: https://countryparks.buckscc.gov.uk

Miss Costa

 

Little Britain Lake

Little Britain Lake is very local to school, located just off the Cowley Road and down Packet Boat Lane.  It's the sort of place that unless you know it's there, you wouldn't know it's there!  It has a pathway all of the way around the lake; this is a little narrow and bumpy in places and not greatly suitable for a buggy (and very small children would need extra supervision) but it is beautiful.  It's full of wild birds and a great place to feed the ducks (they love a bit of chopped lettuce or cooked rice) and there are benches placed at different points.  It never seems to be busy and we are always able to find a space to park.  It's also not too big and just the right size for little legs. Oh, and it’s completely free!

Mrs Bennett

 

Hampton Court Palace

Hampton Court Palace is well worth a visit (though you do need to buy tickets). As the website states: Experience the public dramas and private lives of Henry VIII, his wives and children in the world of the Tudor court. Admire Henry’s Great Hall, the infamous Haunted Gallery and the Tudor kitchens. Discover the spectacular baroque palace built for William III and Mary II and explore the magnificent gardens.’ The grounds are lovely for a walk or a picnic and you can see the outside of the palace and take a relaxing wander along the riverbank. Children under five go free. https://www.hrp.org.uk/hampton-court-palace/

Mrs Pickett

 

Princess Diana Memorial Playground, Kensington Gardens

This interactive and impressive playground includes a giant pirate ship, sand, water and imaginative play areas inspired by the stories of Peter Pan. All set within the beautiful grounds of Kensington Gardens - definitely a fun way to pass a few hours on a bright day. The playground is totally free to enter, safe with gated entry and on site staff ensuring everyone is kept happy and safe. Take a picnic or buy a tasty snack, ice lolly or drink from the cafe if you prefer. There are toilets and places to rinse the sand off before heading home or moving on to take a walk through the park.  https://www.royalparks.org.uk/parks/kensington-gardens/things-to-see-and-do/diana-memorial-playground

Mrs Huse

 

Northala Fields, Northolt

Northala Field Park is an awarding winning green space equipped with two playgrounds, one being for under 14s, a model boating lake, six fishing lakes and three wildlife ponds. There are four artificial hills which stand out of the landscape, giving fantastic views of our local area into London. Just next to the A40 Western Avenue, the location is on our doorstep. A pet friendly area, it is a great way to spend a Saturday afternoon or Sunday morning walking the dog. With all the open space why not take a kite or arrange a family picnic. This is definitely a place for all the family to enjoy.

Mrs Seymour

 

Cassiobury Park, Watford 

Cassiobury Park is a fabulous asset to the local area and can be reached easily by train. It has a beautiful parkland, the Grand Union canal and is packed with fun activities for all the family to make the most of the outdoors. The park has the Paddling Pool Playground, available for children up to the age of 14, that consists of: swings, zip wires, trampolines, a stone maze and different slides. For the little ones, the Cha Cha Cha Playground is suitable for smaller children up to the age of six.

 

On a warm day, the paddling pools are perfect to cool off in. At a small additional cost, there are bungee trampolines, a miniature railway and a bouncy castle. For refreshments, there is a small cafe offering light snacks and ice-creams. I would recommend Cassiobury Park as there is something to do for all the family!

Miss Brown

 

 

Odds Farm Park, Beaconsfield

I would recommend a family visit to a farm. Odds Farm Park, in Beaconsfield, is a lovely place to visit. You can meet many animals in the hands-on area. Here you can stroke rabbits, feed goats and sheep, see pigs and others too. Often a real treat is to see new born animals. There is a daily programme full of fun activities and demonstrations so you can plan out your whole day. In addition to the farm animals there are acres of other adventures too, including outdoor play areas and even a giant indoor play barn. https://www.oddsfarm.co.uk

Mrs Norman

 

Tea at the Battle of Britain Bunker, Uxbridge

Hidden deep within St Andrew’s Park, just ten minutes from Whitehall, is the Battle of Britain Bunker. Originally home to the RAF fighter's number 11 group, the bunker has been excellently preserved and is open to visitors year around. Take a guided tour, which is free for Hillingdon First card holders and under 18's, or stop in the cafe, run by volunteers, for a delicious slice of cake and a hot drink.

Miss Hyland

 

Wellington Country Park

A bit further away and with an entrance fee, is Wellington Country Park. A recent discovery for my family, this is a superb place for children to visit. Their website recommends the park for children up to eight years of age. There are a multitude of play areas, a splash park, a farmyard, a large lake to walk around, nature trails and mini golf.  You can easily spend a whole day here. https://wellington-country-park.co.uk/

Mrs Kelly

 

Little Venice, London

Take a visit to Little Venice where you can explore one of London’s canals! You can walk along Regent’s Canal and explore Rembrandt Gardens, named after the famous artist. While you are there, you can hop aboard the Puppet Theatre Barge – where you can enjoy puppet shows on the canal. You can also visit the birthplace of Alan Turing, the world-renowned code-breaker and pioneer of computer science.  

Miss Tucker

 

Holland Park, London

Sandwiched between bustling Kensington High Street, Brook Green and tourist heavy Notting Hill and Portobello Road, Holland Park is both laid back and buzzing.  It surrounds the communal gardens that inspired Richard Curtis’ film Notting Hill. This leafy neighbourhood has a historic green space at its heart. The park itself symbolises the epitome of West London living, where acres of lush green space meets the best of London’s cultural scene in the form of the open-air opera house and theatre.

 

Holland Park spreads over 54 acres of what used to be the grounds of Cope Castle, a large Jacobean mansion hidden in the woods. Sir Walter Cope built it in the early 17th century. He became Chancellor of the Exchequer under King James 1. Holland Park has: children’s play facilities, a sports area, a café, large areas of woodland abundant with wildlife and 22.5 hectares of gardens.

Mrs Chaudry

 

Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre

An interesting family attraction in Great Missenden, which is roughly half an hour’s drive from Uxbridge. Take a walk through different galleries, which have activities for you and your family to explore. You can also listen to tales from Roald Dahl's stories or go for a stroll through the village lanes and fields that he walked in to see the sights that inspired the author to write. There is a cafe on site, serving lunch, cakes and even afternoon tea or you can simply take a picnic. Admission is £7 per adult and £4.70 for children between the ages of 5-18. For further information, please visit https://www.roalddahl.com › museum

Mrs Dowlut

 

Copas Farms

At the Copas Farms you can pick fruit and vegetables which you then buy. They provide baskets and bags into which you can put the produce you pick. This is then weighed at their tills and you pay based on the kilogram charge of the respective fruit or vegetable.

 

Please note they do not allow you to eat the fruit as you walk around the farm. There is a charge of £4 per person and this is paid at the entry tills before you pick fruit and vegetables. The charge is, however, refunded off the produce you pick and buy.

 

The address is Calves Lane Farm, Billet Lane, Iver, Buckinghamshire, SL0 0LU. Calves Lane Farm is approximately ¾ mile from the A412 Slough/Uxbridge Road. Follow signs to Langley Park/Billet Lane and watch for Copas Farms signs. The Copas Farms are open on Saturday and Sunday 10 am - 4 pm.

Miss Sadanandan

 

Kensington Gardens

Kensington Gardens is my favourite of all the royal parks in London and is perfect for a free family day out! These stunning gardens provide a variety of choices when you visit.  You can visit the regal Kensington Palace, Prince Albert Memorial or just go for a stroll among the impressive surroundings.

 

If you are feeling energetic there is the Diana Children’s Playground where a huge wooden pirate ship awaits you. There is also a family trail where you will have the chance to go on an adventure with Peter Pan. 

Kensington Gardens is easily accessible by Tube with the District, Piccadilly and Central Lines all going there.  Please see the website for more information: https://www.royalparks.org.uk/parks/kensington-gardens

Mr Mitchell

 

Flowerland at Iver

Iver Flowerland is one of the largest garden centres in the UK, which holds everything for your home and garden. As well as being home to a vast range of plants, it hosts a wonderful pet shop with an array of tropical and exotic creatures. This centre will be a great opportunity for your family to explore the variety of plant life and aquatic life that exists within the world. As well as this, they host a food hall and craft shop for you to enjoy. https://www.flowerland.co.uk/

Mr Jones

 

Denham Country Park

Right on our door step you can find Denham Country Park, a fantastic place to spend a few hours with the family. It is very convenient as everything is in close proximity to the carpark. The Adventure Zone is a large wooden playground that includes a sandpit. There is a brass-rubbing trail, and orienteering maps are available in the Visitor Centre for a nominal charge. There is also a pretty countryside walk of approximately one mile that takes you through a wetland meadow, a woodland and past two rivers and the Grand Union Canal. There is gentle sloping access to the Misbourne Chalk Stream outside the cafe, which is an ideal spot to go river dipping (nets are available to buy in the shop). Part of the Colne Valley, it also worth checking online to see what workshops are available for children to participate in during the school holidays. It is a great place to take a picnic or alternatively you can buy food in the café, which has a covered outside area too. https://www.colnevalleypark.org.uk/visitor-centre/

Mrs Kelly

 

Kyoto Gardens, Holland Park

One of the most beautiful gardens in London can be found in Holland Park. The Kyoto Garden offers a unique, Japanese-style landscape which is perfect for quiet reflection and relaxation, especially after a busy school week! Kyoto Gardens is a wonderful place to develop your photography skills or even an opportunity to get the dust off that sketch book!

Miss Lusher

 

Horniman Museum, 100 London Rd London SE23 3PQ

A marvellous museum set in 16 acres of landscaped gardens, the Horniman has a traditional natural history gallery where the exhibits are displayed in traditional cases with no computer touch-screens in sight. There's also an aquarium, a permanent gallery dedicated to African, Afro-Caribbean and Brazilian art, and a collection of around 1,600 musical instruments, with an area where people can play some of them and a display ('At Home with Music').

 

The museum provides extensive facilities for families, including a nature trail, weekend workshops and a hands-on base where children can touch museum objects. Nature Base explores the natural world with exhibits including the Horniman beehive. https://www.horniman.ac.uk/

Mrs Perez

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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