Archive for the 'Lazy Friday' Category


Does your budding Gordon Ramsay want to learn how to cook?

At the Kids Cookery School – he or she will learn how to cook simple, tasty, nutritious meals – in a safe environment.

Situated in Acton, West London, the Kids Cookery School is a registered Charity that aims to reach out to children and young people who are most in need.

The Staff At Kids Cookery School

The Principal of the School is Fiona Hamilton-Fairley. An enthusiastic cook herself, she believes that getting children involved in cooking will teach them the skills to make good food choices for themselves.

Head Chef is John Fernandez.  John leads the teaching team at the Kids Cookery School.

Alexander (Al) Volev is Deputy Chef and Food Safety Trainer.

Nadia Essa is the person that makes sure everything is running smoothly at The Kids Cookery School.

Finally, but most importantly is Hilary. She is the one who goes out with a begging bowl – Fundraising for Kids Cookery School.

Why KCS Is?

The Kids Cookery School is dedicated to teaching children and young people how to cook.  Kids are also taught how to choose healthy and nutritious food. This empowers the children and young people to be able to look forward to a healthier future.

What’s On Offer At KCS?

The Kids Cookery School teaches about 2 500 students per year how to cook.

At the Kids Cookery School – besides teaching able-bodied kids how to cook, they also welcome children with Special Needs (physical, learning or behavioural).  The premises are disabled friendly and can accommodate wheelchairs.

They Have Received Donations From:

Being a Registered Charity, fundraising is an important part of the Kids Cookery School.

•    The Frozen Cookie Company donates 20% of the proceeds from their stall at this weekend’s Real Food Festival.
•    The Kids Cookery School is looking for a new supermarket sponsor to supply food and household goods.
•    Electrolux have donated Kitchen Appliances
•    Association of Catering Excellence (ACE) Quiz Night raised £500
•    John Lewis donated £500 in vouchers for new equipment
•    Sodexo Foundation’s STOP Hunger Campaign donated £6 400
•    Holroyd Howe donates £53 000 to the Kids Cookery School
If you would like to make a donation please go to

Contact Details

The Kids Cookery School
107 Gunnersbury Lane
W3 8HQ

Tel: 020 8992 8882
Fax: 020 8992 7770




In 1985 a small group of volunteers including their Founder Patron, Tim Grundy came up with the concept of The Children’s Adventure Farm Trust (CAFT).

Based around a beautiful 17th century farmhouse, in the heart of Cheshire Countryside. The Charity offers free adventure breaks and activities to children who are disadvantaged by illness, disability and poverty from all over the Northwest of the UK.

Their mission statement:

The Children’s Adventure Farm Trust cannot change a child’s life in just a few days, but believes it can show the children who stay here that there is more to life than their day to day existence.

It is the memory a child can keep and cherish in the darkest times that really matters. If a child leaves with that, then they have truly achieved something. Changing a life may not be possible but making a difference is.

What facilities are there?

•    Art Room
•    Barbeque Area
•    Field/Adventure Playground
•    Games Room
•    Greenhouse & Organic Vegetable Patch
•    Junior Assault Course
•    Multi Sensory Suite
•    Music Room
•    Nature Activity Trail
•    Pond/Sensory Garden
•    Respite Care Facility
•    Sheep Enclosure
•    Sports Hall

The Barbeque Area:

A separate decked area, near the farmhouse, with seating for up to 50 people – in a quiet orchard. One gas barbeque is provided.

The Games Room:

The Games Room is situated on the first floor of the Sports Hall and provides a Pool Table, Dart Board, Large TV with Sky, Disco Area, Juke Box and four couches for relaxing.

Junior Assault Course:

An Outdoor Activity Area for children aged 10 – 15 years.

Multi-Sensory Suite:

A magical room with special lights, strobe effects, soft play area, ‘touchy-feely’ experiences, plus a specialist room that is ideal for children with extra special needs. There is also a state of the art play and entertainment centre.

Music Room:

Used for structural workshops and free time. It has a wide range of Percussion Instruments, Recording Equipment, Electronic Instruments and a Video Karaoke System.

Nature Activity Trail:

The Nature Activity Trail is an exciting and fun trek with many hidden surprises and wonderful things to spot – just around the next corner.  It is an ideal venue for Magical Treasure Hunts.

Pond/Sensory Garden:

The pond is home to Geese and Ducks.  It is a very relaxing area for all children/young people and is fully accessible for wheelchair users.

This very special area gives a feeling of tranquility and colour – and is particularly enjoyed by children / young people with a Visual Impairment.

Respite Care Facility:

The care of a Disabled or Chronically Sick child is a very exhausting lifestyle. It has been found that a short break recharges the batteries of the Carer. Children’s Adventure Farm has two self contained flats that can be hired individually or combined.

Sheep Enclosure:

They have 6 Sheep living on the farm. The Children can pet and feed the Sheep and learn all about Wool Textures, Spinning etc. They will also learn about Animal Welfare.

Sports Hall:

Opened by Sir Bobby Charlton, the Sports Hall provides facilities for five a side football, basketball, netball, volleyball, indoor hockey, gymnastics and soft play for children of all abilities.

There are also showers and toilets for disabled and able bodied people.

A Quick Mention of Forthcoming Events

•    Family Fun Day – On Sunday August 31st  2008 in CAFT
•    The Grand Canyon Experience in USA – September 12th – 21st 2008 (Global Challenge)
•    The Great Wall Challenge – September 20th – 28th 2009 in China
•    London to Paris Bike Ride – June 2009

See here for contact details.



What are you doing this Sunday – July 13 th?
You may want to take the family to the ‘Party in the Park’.
From 12.00 noon – 5.00 pm at Phillips Park.

Where Is The Party?

The party is being held at Phillips Park in East Manchester.

What’s Happening at the Party?

It will be a Family Fun Day.

Activities include Seeds of the East (activities in the Allotments and Community Orchards) plus a Fun Fair, other stalls and family fun activities.

For more information contact Richard Eccles of East Area Parks on 0161 223 8278.

While you’re at the park – take time to see its other attractions.

What Else Can Be Seen At Phillips Park?

See the Children’s Play Area.  Phillips Park provides two play areas for young children.

•    The first is near to the Lodge on Stuart Street
•    The other on the Showfield.

These Play Areas are designed to meet the different needs of Toddlers and Juniors.

Manchester Leisure prides itself on creating play environments that are inclusive and offer multi-sensory experiences to help develop motor activity and encourage interactive and imaginative play, in a safe environment.

In the Play Areas, equipment is tested visually on a weekly basis and each month it is tested for technical use.  This ensures that all equipment is in good safe working order at all times.

What Is Inclusive Play?

This is all children playing together – irrespective of age, ability or ethnic background.

Therefore, children that are disabled can play safely in the Play Area alongside their able bodied friends.

Also, children have a natural need for adventure. To see if they can stretch themselves to their limits. In the Play Area – the equipment is meant to allow this in a safe environment.


If you have green fingers but no garden of your own, allotments may well be the answer.

What Are the Advantages of Having an Allotment?

•    You and the family can enjoy fresh food that you have grown yourself
•    No unknown pesticides are used on your vegetables
•    You will have a more healthy lifestyle with regular exercise
•    The opportunity to make new friends
•    The plots are accessible for disabled people.


The orchards are next to the allotments (opposite the Fairclough Street entrance), the Community Orchard was set up by the local residents to provide a source of fresh produce and shared enjoyment for the community.

The orchard has many apple trees.

The Community Orchard is open to everyone. For more information contact East Manchester Parks on 0161 223 8278.

Other Facilities in Phillips Park

•    Bowling Greens
•    Hard Standing Ball Court
•    Junior Football Pitch
•    Showfield for Events
•    Environmental Activities
•    Educational Activities
•    Health Walks
•    Picnic Area
•    And a Friends of the Park Group

With all that Phillips Park has to offer – you and the family are guaranteed a good day out.



I was brought up with Belle Vue in Manchester being a promise of a wonderful Saturday afternoon out.

Along with mum, dad and my younger sister Natalie – we’d queue up for the 53 bus that would take us to Belle Vue. I can remember the sun always shining.

The Zoo and Its Inhabitants

We’d walk round the Monkey House, I can still remember the rather strange smell that had us glad to get out into the fresh air.

Then there were the lions and tigers, hippopotamus and bears, not to forget the snakes and lizards in the Reptile House.

We stuffed ourselves with ice cream and candyfloss. These were a rare treat as the war hadn’t been long over including rationing.

As I Went Into My Teen Years

By the time I was into my mid teens Belle Vue had a Ballroom, so Saturday nights would find a group of us girls waltzing and quickstepping the night away – well at least until the last bus was due to leave at 11.00 pm.

My First Date with My Husband Was an Afternoon at Belle Vue

There was a permanent fairground where we enjoyed ourselves.  Although at one stage I lost my dignity when we went on a ride called, ‘Shooting The Rapids.’  I ended up with my full circular skirt up round my waist, while my gallant knight slithered and slid on his back beside me down this chute – that dumped us in a heap at the bottom.

Bob and I Took Our Daughters to Belle Vue

By this time, we had moved to Longsight. This meant Belle Vue was now only a walk away from home.  We would go for a walk through Belle Vue on a Sunday morning.

Saturday nights were filled with the sounds of the Speedway as the motorbikes roared round and round the track.

The fireworks displays also on Saturday nights would light up the sky – often making settling our daughters difficult.

Belle Vue in the Present

Belle Vue Zoological Gardens closed in 1982, after being open for over 150 years.

Now all that’s left of the magnificent Belle Vue is the Speedway that has always been a great money maker.

Plans to Bring Back the Magic of Belle Vue

People with memories of Belle Vue in its heyday are now campaigning to bring back Belle Vue to its former glory.

It is planned that starting May 23rd 2009 there will be a festival called ‘Belle Vue Weekender.’

The Belle Vue Weekender will possibly have two funfairs, street performers, wrestling, bands, magicians and some children’s competitions.

It is to be hoped that bringing Belle Vue back to Manchester will help bring employment back to an area that has a very high unemployment rate.  We were promised a casino but the government changed its mind.

Therefore, the Belle Vue Weekender is not just nostalgia, but an economic need in East Manchester.



Tatton Park has everything to interest all members of the family. There is the Mansion, Gardens, Farm Old Hall, 1 000 acre Deer Park and speciality shops.

Some Events Coming Up

Donkey Party at the Farm

Saturday June 21st

Join us at the farm. We are celebrating the arrival of our newest farm donkey ‘Frosty’.  You can also meet the old favourite donkeys – Dotty and Daisy.

Try out your artistic talents and paint a Donkey Picture.

Help to groom the donkeys and make them look nice and pretty for the visitors.

Plus come and meet Blossom and the Clydesdale’s adorable new foal Tabitha.

Cancer Research Race for Life

Saturday June 21st and Sunday June 22nd.

The race starts at 11.00 am.  Telephone 08705 134314 for further details or to register.

1940’s Weekend – The Way We Were

Saturday June 28th and Sunday June 29th

Tatton’s role in World War II was an important one and is celebrated during this weekend with battle re-enactment on the Home Front.

You can try your hand at make do and mend, dig for victory, wartime cooking, washday and attend an evacuees’ school.

Dance and sing with entertainers.

There will be Displays of Military and Civilian Vehicles.

Step back in time and come dressed up.

The 1940’s Weekend takes place in the Old Hall.  Times are 11.00 am – 5.00 pm (last entry 4.00 pm)

Adults £4, Children £2 or Family (2 adults and up to 3 children) £10

Some More Events Coming Up This Year

Rare Breeds Weekend At the Farm

Saturday July 19th and Sunday July 20th

Meet all our rare breed animals and help raise awareness of the endangered breeds

Summer Activities at The Farm

Tuesday July 29th – Friday August 29th

Donkey grooming, scarecrow making, farmyard collage, paint a picture and fun quiz.

Adopt A Farm Animal Day

Monday August 25th

You can adopt a Home Farm animal. The adoption scheme helps Tatton’s essential conservation and education work.

Kiddy Cook

Saturday September 13th

Kiddy Cook’s unique cooking session encourages children to learn about ‘good’ food and to explore new flavours in an educational and fun way.

Booking essential Tel: 07976 619648.

What’s New At The Farm?

Perfect for all the family, the farm provides a picture of rural life where time stands still since the 1930s.

Children can feed the goats and hens, meet the pigs and donkeys and visit Aunt Mary’s 1930s cottage.

Today the farm is still an authentic working farm that uses traditional farming methods. Recently it has been given Rare Breeds Accreditation for its commitment to helping sustain rare breed farm animals.

Meet The Animals


Our pig herd comprises of six rare breeds that are on the Rare Breeds Survival Trust (RBST) watch list.

Each individual pig has its own unique personality – this makes them all great characters.

There are likely to be newborn pigs every month.


Our three Clydesdale horses are the gentle giants of the farmyard with equally big personalities.

Finn is by far the cheekiest, with a fantastic sense of humour.

While Blue is a real gentleman who is great with children of all ages.

Then there is Blossom, our brood mare, she excels at motherhood.  Her latest foal, Talisman born May 2007 – a brother for Jester.


Meet Daisy and Dotty, our adorable donkeys.  Bella is the youngest of the three ladies at just six years old, while Daisy and Dotty are both grand old ladies at 20 years old.  Throughout the year, we often have pampering days for the donkeys – children can help to groom them.


Loved by their visitors because of their cheeky personalities. Goats are often referred to as the missing link between farm animals and pets.

Visitors can buy goat food from the shop to feed them.


Tatton Dale is famous for its Red Poll Cattle, brought here in the 1930s by Lord Egerton.

Calves are born during Spring and early Summer, so there is a very good chance to be able to see them.


Our flock of 45 ewes lamb once a year in March/April which is one of our farming calendar highlights.

Kippy and Jack

Last but not least are two of our biggest characters at Home Farm.

Meet Kippy, the errr!!! Hard working sheep dog.  Play fetch with her and you’ll be her best friend.

Fearless Jack is our hand reared black and white cat who is larger than life in every sense.

Other Visitor Activities

•    Walking / Cycling
•    Picnics and BBQS
•    Horse Riding
•    Sailing
•    Fishing

Adventure Playground

Conveniently located near the main car park.  Tatton Park’s Adventure Playground is one of the Park’s younger visitors favourite reasons for visiting.
It is suitable for children of all ages and abilities – from toddler to teens.

With over 30 rides, it’s fun and it’s FREE.

Contact Details

General Enquires: 01625 374400

Address: Tatton Park, Knutsford, Cheshire, WA16 6QN



Wythenshawe Park in Manchester – a park in the middle of the town. It has 275 acres of magnificent landscape.

There are a wide range of facilities in the park:

•    Athletics Track
•    Bowls
•    Children’s Play Area
•    Crazy Golf
•    Horse Riding
•    Tennis Courts
•    Community Farm

Wythenshawe Community Farm is a registered charity and was established in 1984.

Children have a wonderful opportunity to learn about where food comes from and witness the busyness of a working farm.

A large assortment of farm animals including cows, sheep, goats, pigs, ducks and horses. The farm also has an extensive breeding programme – this means at varying times of the year young animals can be seen.

Visitors to the farm can get involved by sponsoring an animal.

Events in the Park from June – September

•    Health Walks on Tuesdays 1.00 pm – 2.00 pm
•    Brass Band on the first Sunday of each month 1.00 pm – 3.30 pm
•    Wythenshawe Hall opens for the summer, with a brand new exhibition – ‘A Park for the People’.
•    Woodcarving in the Park
•    Tales and Tours
•    Peter Pan Outdoor Theatre
•    Children’s Craft and Storytelling Drop-Ins
•    The Magic Garden
•    A Park for the People Memory Trail

Historical Information on Wythenshawe Park

From the late 1300’s, Wythenshawe descended through the Tatton family, who lived at Wythenshawe Hall.  The most dramatic incident in the Tatton’ long history was over the winter of 1643 – 44 when the site was attacked by Cromwell’s parliamentarian soldiers during the Civil War.

Robert Tatton a Royalist kept the Hall in a state of defence but surrendered on February 27th 1644 after two cannons were brought from Manchester.

By 1830, a number of fields around the Hall were opened to create an area of parkland.

In 1926 the hall and parkland was bought by Lord and Lady Simon at a time when the City Council was developing Wythenshawe as ‘The Garden City’, providing new housing for families being moved out of the then deprived areas of the city.

It was given to the city, ‘to be kept forever as an open space for the people of Manchester,’ and was intended for the recreational use of people living on the newly built nearby Wythenshawe Housing Estate.

Since that time the park has been a place of recreation, learning and enjoyment for the people of Manchester.

Education Programme

The Park Wardens are friendly and experienced and offer a variety of environmental – based activities which can either simply be for enjoyment or as part of a programme of learning for the National Curriculum.

Activities can include tours and planting sessions in the Horticultural Centre, to woodland exploring and orienteering.

Visits can be tailor made to suit and cost £1.50 per child.  For bookings etc call Phillipa Lloyd on 0161 998 2117.

For Manchester Schools Only

A Tudor Workshop is currently available at Wythenshawe Hall on Mondays.  This is FREE.

For more information please contact the Development Officer on 0161 998 2117.

Stop to Eat at the Courtyard Tea Room

The newly refurbished tearoom in the Courtyard is now open.

Throughout the Winter, a careful and imaginative restoration programme converted the historic former stables block into a comfy and spacious café.  Where you can enjoy a range of hot and cold beverages and snacks.

Opening hours are:  Weekends and School Holidays – 10.00 am – 3.30 pm.

The café can be hired for private functions. For further information call
0161 998 5083.

Put Wythenshawe Park on your list of ‘place to go this summer.’



A Traditional Country Fair In A Small Friendly And Pretty Village.

Arrange to spend the day at Hickling Country Farm, in Fayre Field, Hickling, Melton Mowbray, Leics, LE14 3AA on Sunday June 15th.

What Is Going On?

• The day starts with the ‘Corn Dolly Challenge.’

It’s an 8 miles long race for serious runners. Starting from Fayrefield near Hickling Basin at 10.30 am to Long Clawson and back.

For further information, please contact Emma Scarborough on 823481.

• ‘A Fun Run’

This is a 2-mile long race around Hickling.

For all aged 7 years and above.

• ‘Companion Dog Show’

The Dog Show was so successful last year that we are doing it again.

Enter your pet in the Pedigree or Novelty Classes.

Wonderful prizes to be won. Kennel Club rules apply.

Entry is £1.50 per dog / class on the day (non-refundable) – also gains you entry to the fair.

There are 2 rings.

Ring 1 Pedigree Classes Judged by Mr Steve Moore

Ring 2 Novelty Classes Judged by Ms Linda Haslam

• Fancy Dress
• Best Child Handler
• Best mongrel / crossbreed
• Dog in best condition
• Bitch in best condition
• Handsomest Dog
• Prettiest Bitch
• Waggiest Dog

Entries from 12.00 noon – judging starts at 1.00 pm.

Telephone enquiries 01664 822319 or 01664 822600.

• Falconry Display

Last year this proved to be a big hit.

These charismatic birds swoop low over the audience and show off their hunting skills; an educating and entertaining experience.

• Vintage Vehicles

A display and parade of Cars, Tractors, Bikes and Farm Machinery.


• Craft Fair and Market

• Fly Past

• Inflatables

• Games

• Raffle

• Tombola

• Arena events providing all day entertainment

• Children’s Activities

• Refreshments

How Much Does It Cost?

Admission is £1.50 per adult. Children go free.

Is There Parking?

There is free parking in the field opposite.

Are There Toilets on Site?


Would You Like To Help?

The Country Fair and Scarecrow Weekend are organised by the Country Fair Committee, but couldn’t run at all without the incredible support they receive from the village.

Here Is A List of Ways in Which You Can Get Involved:

• Join the Committee – New Ideas Always Welcome
• Offer Sponsorships
• We need Car Park Attendants, People to Provide Refreshment, Wash Up, and Run A Couple of Stalls etc. The more people who help the better
• Cooks Wanted
• Can You Donate A Prize for the Raffle or Tombola. Items should be New and in Date.
• Can You Sing or Dance or Do A Turn on Stage?

If you would like to help, please contact Margaret Woolley on 01664 822319.