The English School holidays are just around the corner, with my boy Joe breaking up in just over a week’s time. I personally love the six weeks holiday, a chance to get to spend some real quality time with my boy, but have to admit that it can be a really expensive time. Theme parks, the cinema and general days out do not come cheaply, and has you have six weeks to fill, you may find that you bank balance looks decidedly unhealthy at the end of it. Fortunately, there are some activities and places that you can visit that won’t break the bank.
Visit your local park and playground
All kids love to spend time in a children’s playground, and if it one that has climbing frames, activity trails and outdoor exercise equipment, so much the better. A lot of money has been spent on council run, local parks, and many now have a great range of activities that you can use or free. We love to use both Cannock Park and Brunswick Park in Wednesbury which have activity panels, a great range of swings and slides, and also have soft surfaces and fantastic playground solutions that can make those little playground accidents a little less dangerous. Another great option in the Midlands is the beautiful Baggeridge Country Park, which is full of natural beauty, with large lakes that you can fish for newts and tadpoles, great walks and a lovely playground.
There are some amazing pools that have slides and lazy rivers, splash pools and larger pools for serious swimming, but these can be expensive. However, you can also use your local pools and have just as much fun. Take your rubber ring, your beach ball and your floats to a local leisure centre, many of them offer free swimming for children, and some will even have special days with inflatables, so you need to grab yourself a timetable. Leisure Centres also offer other activities including free tennis lessons. (You can find out more about the free sessions here.)
Find a free town trail
Taking your children into town during the holidays can fill parents with dread. Expensive trips around the shops are not ideal when you are trying to stick to a budget, but there are other ways to fill your time in town centres, There are a lot of town trails going on this summer, not least the Wolves in Wolves trail, where you collect your map and search for the 30, beautifully painted wolves that will be on display around the city of Wolverhampton.