From cracking days out and free family activities, through to energetic sports and some unmissable special events – SoGlos’s guide to the summer holidays in Gloucestershire in 2019 is guaranteed to make the six-week school break fly by.
With a history that goes back to 1854, Cheltenham Ladies’ College is a world-renowned independent school which provides an excellent education to girls from across the globe. Providing a broad curriculum and excellent co-curricular offering, the boarding and day school is dedicated to creating a nurturing environment that’s supportive, challenging, innovative and creative.
Pupils can benefit from small class sizes and high-quality teaching, while Cheltenham Ladies’ College also places emphasis on the importance of engaging girls in sport and physical exercise. Its newly renovated Health and Fitness Centre includes a sports hall; multi-purpose activity studio; multi-purpose dance studio; five squash courts; and a 58-station fitness gym complete with free weights, a spin area and an indoor rowing space.
For more information, visit cheltladiescollege.org directly.
From Tuesday 23 to Saturday 27 July 2019 at Everyman Theatre in Cheltenham.
Families can enjoy a fantastic performance of David Walliams’ Mr Stink at Everyman Theatre Bringing the heart-warming tale to life, the story follows 12-year-old Chloe, who invites Mr Stink and his smelly dog to leave behind their bench home to come and secretly live in her parents shed.
Expect all sorts of madness and mayhem at this thoroughly enjoyable show.
Packed with bits to make you laugh, cry, sing and dance, Mr Stink will be a treat for parents as well as kids. The show is also a great option for a rainy day during the school holidays.
Mr Stink will be performed at 6pm from Tuesday 23 to Saturday 27 July 2019, with a 1pm performance on the Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday. Tickets cost £23.50.
To book tickets, visit everymantheatre.org.uk directly.
Holst Birthplace Museum is open on Tuesdays to Saturdays from 10.30am to 4pm throughout the summer holidays.
There’s plenty for the kids to do at Holst Birthplace Museum this summer. Kicking off the ‘A Victorian Childhood’ exhibition, where visitors can take a trip back in time and see what it was really like to grow up in the 19th century.
As well as that, drop-in children’s craft sessions will also take place, including creating peg people, Victorian games, scrapbook designing and learning to write like a Victorian.
Offering great value, Holst Birthplace Museum now offers all tickets as annual passes, meaning families can come back as many times as they like for no extra cost.
Entry into Holst Birthplace Museum costs £6 for adults and £2 for children. Drop-in craft sessions are an additional £1 per child.
There’s no need to book, however, for more information visit holstmuseum.org.uk directly.
From Friday 2 to Sunday 4 August 2019 at The Brewery Quarter in Cheltenham.
Adding an extra day of entertainment for this year, Summer Jam is back again this August with live music, family entertainment and an arts and crafts market.
For the adults, The Brewery’s bars will have exclusive offers, and for families there is live music including dance, hip hop and reggae, and plenty of opportunity to do some dancing at one of the workshops.
Summer Jam is free to attend and runs from 5pm to 9.30pm on the Friday, 1pm to 9.30pm on the Saturday and 1pm to 7.30pm on the Sunday.
Returning for a fourth year, Summer Jam will now feature a Friday night too, with live music and a festival atmosphere that everyone can join in with.
There’s no need to book tickets but for more information head to breweryquarter.co.uk directly.
Every Saturday from Saturday 27 July to Saturday 17 August 2019 at Regent Arcade in Cheltenham.
Take the kids to the beach come rain or shine this summer holidays, when Regent Arcade in Cheltenham has its Beach Club – complete with beach games and entertainment.
Totally free of charge, kids can have a go at limbo or try the giant Jenga. Meet circus stars: Max Cheering the ring master and Isla Flip a trapeze extraordinaire, as they entertain little ones with their dazzling skills.
A fantastic free event, The Beach Club at Regent Arcade is all indoors, meaning it’s perfect for keeping the kids happy, even on a rainy day.
Entry to The Beach Club at Regent Arcade is completely free of charge and is on every Saturday, from 11am to 4pm, from Saturday 27 July to Saturday 17 August 2019.
There’s no need to book, simply turn up at Regent Arcade. For more information, visit regentarcade.co.uk directly.
Every weekday from Monday 22 July to Friday 30 August 2019, excluding Monday 26 August 2019. The camps will take place at Cotswold Clubhouse in Bourton-on-the-Water.
Cotswold Clubhouse is running both its Summer Gymnastics Camp and Summer Activity Camps throughout the entire summer holidays. Activity Camps are suitable for children aged two to four years-old and include soft play, arts and crafts, team activities – all with a different theme each week.
With themes including space, jungle and super heroes, the Activity Camps will end each week with fancy dress and a disco.
The Gymnastic Camp is for children aged four to 12 years-old and is run by experienced instructors.
Cotswold Clubhouse also runs an extended camp for those awkward days before the kids return to school. These will take place from Monday 15 to Friday 19 July 2019 and Monday 2 to Tuesday 3 September 2019.
If it’s just a day out you fancy, Cotswold Clubhouse has a fantastic soft play facility, along with a great café for a bite to eat. Not wanting others to miss out on the fun, visitors can also enjoy themed arts and crafts, face painting, story reading and games.
Holiday camps cost from £30 per child, per day and run from 10am to 3.15pm, with an early drop-off or late pick up option available for an additional fee. Entry to the soft play costs £1 for adults, free of charge for children under six months-old, £1.50 for six to 12-month-olds, £4.75 for one to three-year-olds and £5.75 for over fours.
To book a place, visit cotswoldclubhouse.co.uk directly.
Everyday during the summer holidays at Batsford Arboretum.
There’s so much going at Batsford Arboretum throughout the summer holidays. Families can run around the beautiful arboretum and bring along a picnic, or they can take part in one of the many activity sessions.
Activities include The Big Batsford Bug Hunt which runs from Saturday 20 July to Sunday 1 September 2019 where kids can search high and low for creepy crawlies hidden around the arboretum.
As well as that, there’s Forest School on selected dates for families, and a separate one for toddlers where little ones can get stuck in playing with the mud kitchen, go bug hunting and enjoy wild play.
Promising enchanting tales in a magical setting, Forest Stories and Crafts will take place on Thursday 15 August 2019. Children will enjoy stories before making their own story character out of natural materials.
Entry into Batsford Arboretum costs £8.95 for adults, £3.50 for children and free of charge for children under four-years-old.
Tickets for The Big Batsford Bug Hunt cost £2.50 per child in addition to the admission fee. Family Forest School costs £8 per child, per session. Forest Stories and Crafts tickets cost £10 per child.
Visit batsarb.co.uk directly.
From Saturday 6 July to Sunday 1 September 2019 at Newark Park.
Children can check out the interactive play kitchen, see the life-size model tiger and garden trail at Newark Park this summer, when The Tiger Who Came to Tea pops up in a fantastic family exhibition.
Celebrating 50 years since The Tiger Who Came to Tea was published, the exhibition will be at the National Trust property and will include storytelling, craft sessions and a themed garden trail.
A perfect spot for a picnic, make a day of it and enjoy the glorious grounds and gardens at Newark Park, before tucking into lunch.
Admission costs £10 for adults and £5 for children.
Visit nationaltrust.org.uk/events directly.
Saturday 27 July to Sunday 1 September 2019 at Sudeley Castle.
Brave children can learn what it takes to be a real knight for the day at Sudeley Castle’s Knight School this summer.
Kids can dress up to look the part, before trying out a range of knight-themed activities. There’ll also be creative arts and crafts in the Knight’s Pavilion tent, as well as storytelling on Wednesdays.
Promising entertainment for hours, Knight School is included in the general admission price at Sudeley Castle, making it a fantastic day out during the school holidays.
Entry to Knight School is included in the general admission costs, which are £16.75 for adults, £7.75 for children aged three to 15 and free of charge for under threes.
Book tickets to Sudeley Castle by visiting sudeleycastle.co.uk directly.
Nature in Art is open from Tuesday to Sunday throughout the summer holidays.
The world’s first museum and art gallery dedicated to art inspired by nature, Nature in Art is great for a day out during the school holidays.
With changing exhibitions, the museum also has Activity Days throughout the summer holidays. Including bird mask making, foil art, plastic flower creations and rock art, children will be spoilt for choice.
Also exhibiting throughout the summer holidays, artist Norman Thelwell’s original cartoons will be on display for families to enjoy. Outside, there’s also a sculpture trail and small play area for little ones to run around.
Entry into Nature in Art cost £5.25 for adults, free of charge for under eights and £4.75 for eight to 15-year-olds. Sessions for the Children’s Activity Days cost £6 per child, last 90 minutes and must be booked in advance.
To book Activity Days, visit natureinart.org.uk directly.
Everyday throughout the summer holidays at Painswick Rococo Garden.
A brand-new exhibition will be open at Painswick Rococo Garden this summer. Art Unbound will feature works from 18 different British sculptors and families can explore all they have to offer with the special Sculpture Adventure Trail.
Whilst you’re there, let the kids roam around the maze, hunt for clues with the Rococo quiz or fly up into the air on the giant tree swing.
Entertaining audiences during the summer, Rococo Garden will be host to a variety of alfresco theatre performances. A firm favourite to delight younger audiences, Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves will be performed at 2.30pm on Saturday 27 July 2019.
Entry cost from £8.95 for adults and £4 for four to 16-year-olds, free of charge for under fours.
Tickets to Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves cost £14 for adults and £6 for children aged between four and 16.
Visit rococogarden.org.uk directly.
Cotswold Farm Park in Guiting Power is open seven days a week during the summer holidays.
Perfect for a family day out, Cotswold Farm Park has so much going on this summer. Feed the animals, take a tractor ride, race around in the Play Barn or get lost running around the Maize Maze.
Meet the smaller residents at the farm park in the Discovery Barn, where kids and adults can cuddle with chicks, rabbits and other animals. Outside, there’s a play area, zip wire, sand pit and bouncing pillows.
Having tripled its visitor centre in size recently, Cotswold Farm Park now has a welcoming restaurant seating up to 130 people and a lovely new shop where families can grab something to eat or pick up some gorgeous gifts to take home.
Cotswold Farm Park is open seven days a week from 10.30am to 5pm. Tickets during the summer holidays cost from £14 for adults, £12.50 for children and £8.50 for toddlers. The Maize experience is open from Saturday 20 July to Sunday 1 September 2019 and combined tickets to include the Maize experience will be available.
To book tickets to Cotswold Farm Park, visit cotswoldfarmpark.co.uk directly.
Throughout the summer holidays at Rendcomb College.
Active kids can get their fix at Rendcomb College’s Tennis Camp. Taught by LTA qualified coaches, children will learn a host of skills each day and all abilities are welcome.
If it’s a variety of sports you’re looking for, the GECKO Multi-Sport camp will also be running this summer, including hockey, tennis, football or rugby.
For families, Rendcomb College will also play host to a variety of outdoor theatre experiences. Pack a picnic and enjoy some alfresco entertainment with performance including The Railway Children, The Scarlet Pimpernel and The Comedy of Errors.
Offering extra flexibility for parents, Rendcomb’s summer holiday camps also offer an early drop off.
The Summer Tennis Camp will run on weekdays from Monday 12 to Friday 23 August 2019 and costs £40 per child, per day. The Multi-Sport Camp will run on weekdays from Monday 29 July to Thursday 29 August 2019 and costs from £27 per child. Outdoor theatre times and prices vary, visit the link below for details.
Throughout the summer holidays at Gloucester Cathedral.
Perfect whatever the weather, Gloucester Cathedral is bursting with things for families to do. For £4.50 families can take part in the Discovery Guide which takes them to the Cathedral’s most interesting areas, with plenty of interactive activities along the way.
Recently opening after a big refurbishment, the Tribune Gallery is a great place to keep the kids entertained. Dress up as characters from the Great East Window, check out the never seen before views of the Cathedral filmed from a drone, and design your own gruesome gargoyle.
If you’re looking for some family fun, head to Brunch and Bounce on Saturday 10 August 2019. Kids can bound around on the bouncy castle and take part in free crafts whilst the adults can enjoy coffee, pastries and the weekend papers.
Admission to Brunch and Bounce is free of charge and runs on Saturday 10 August 2019. The Family Discovery Guide costs £4.50 per guide. Admission to the Tribune Gallery is free and is open from 10.30am Monday to Saturday and from 11.45am on Sundays.
There’s no need to book tickets to Gloucester Cathedral, but you can find more information by visiting gloucestercathedral.org.uk directly.
Throughout the summer holidays at Riverside Sports & Leisure Club.
Offering fantastic fun for kids and great value for parents, Riverside Sports & Leisure Club in Gloucester will run its summer camp from 9am to 1pm every week day during the summer holidays, which is suitable for children ages five to 12.
Children can get active with a host of sports including badminton, squash, tennis and basketball – all taught by qualified instructors. Meanwhile, for parents who fancy working out and have some time to themselves during the holidays, Riverside’s handy creche is open six days a week and is suitable for children aged six-weeks-old to four-years-old.
With a fantastic family-friendly swimming pool, Riverside’s facilities make a great choice for rainy days during the summer holidays.
Riverside’s summer holiday camp will run from 9am to 1pm and costs £3 per child, per hour or £10 for four hours. The creche is open from 9.20am to 11.20am Mondays to Friday, and 9.30am to 11.30am on Saturdays. Sessions in the creche cost £3 per child and £1.50 for additional siblings.
Holiday camps can be booked over the phone by calling (01452) 413214 or visit riversidesports.co.uk for more general information.
From Saturday 29 June to Saturday 21 September 2019 at Museum of Gloucester.
Families can get up close with all things lunar at Museum of Gloucester’s fantastic Moon Exhibition this summer holiday. Little ones can wear an out of this world outfit on the Moon Fancy Dress Day, go on an interactive adventure with the Moon Historytelling session, or enjoy some storytelling in the Tales from the Moon session.
Brimming with things for families to get involved with, children can handle real lunar rock samples, take part in some solar-themed crafts and find out about the moon landings and how they nearly went wrong.
If that isn’t enough, mini storytellers can take part in a Creative Writing Workshop or have some down time in the Reading Corner, with a collection of moon-related books.
After recently making entry free of charge, the Museum of Gloucester is a great value family day out.
Entry to the Museum of Gloucester is free of charge. Additional workshops listed above are £5, except rock handling, reading and fancy dress which are all free. Crafts are £1 per child.
Find out more about each event by visiting facebook.com/MuseumofGloucester directly.
Gloucester Quays Food Festival is on from Friday 26 to Sunday 28 July 2019, whilst Gloucester Quays itself is open everyday during the school holidays.
Kicking the school holidays off with some tasty treats, Gloucester Quays Food Festival will start on Friday 26 and run until Sunday 28 July 2019. Featuring celebrity chef demos, children’s entertainment and family fun.
Throughout the rest of the holidays, families can also stroll around the shops, see the latest films at the cinema or head to the Orchard Street Food & Craft Market on Saturday 3 and Sunday 4 August 2019.
With a great selection of eateries, many offering kids eat free options, Gloucester Quays is also an ideal destination for parents who want to treat the kids to a meal out this summer holidays.
Gloucester Quays Food Festival is on from Friday 26 to Sunday 28 July 2019 and has free entry.
There’s no need to book, simply turn up. For more information, visit gloucesterquays.co.uk directly.
Dean Heritage Centre is open every day throughout the summer holidays. Special events including Pirates of Penzance will take place on Sunday 4 August 2019.
Bursting with things to do and explore, Dean Heritage Centre has a Victorian School Classroom where visitors can step back in time, or head down the mine to learn about the Forest’s history.
A highlight of the summer events, Pirates of Penzance will featuring alfresco opera which follows the story of a boy who, after mishearing, sets out to be a pirate instead of a pilot.
Take a walk through the enchanting woodland as Dean Heritage Centre is home to The Gruffalo Trail, which is sure to be a hit with the kids.
Tickets for The Gruffalo Trail only, cost £3 per person, with under 3s gaining free entry. Entry to Dean Heritage Centre costs £8 for adults and £6 for children over three-years-old. Tickets for Pirates of Penzance cost £20 for adults and £10 for children.
Tickets can be purchased on the day for Dean Heritage Centre. Tickets for Pirates of Penzance can be purchased by visiting deanheritagecentre.com directly.
Everyday during the school holidays at Go Ape Beechenhurst in the Forest of Dean.
Treat the kids to an incredible day out at Go Ape in the Forest of Dean. With the Tree Top Adventure aimed at children over one metre high. Mini dare devils can whizz through the trees, balance along the wobbly bridges and navigate the obstacles.
Taking an hour, the Tree Top Adventure is a fantastic way to keep the kids busy this summer. Junior adrenaline junkies will get their fix zooming along zip wires for a whopping 84 metres, and reaching heights of 10 metres above the ground.
Set in the heart of the Forest of Dean, why not make a day of it, pack a picnic and check out the Sculpture Trail too. If there’s older siblings, the Tree Top Challenge at nearby Mallards Pike, is also a great choice.
The Tree Top Adventure is suitable for children over one metre tall and costs £19 per person. The Tree Top Challenge costs from £20 for 10 to 15-year-olds or £26.40 for adults if you book online.
Book in advance by visiting goape.co.uk directly.
Everyday throughout the summer holidays at Slimbridge Wetland Centre.
There’s so much to do at Slimbridge Wetland Centre whatever the weather. For families, Global Adventurers will run from Saturday 13 July to Sunday 1 September 2019.
Visitors can discover some of the world’s wetland challenges and dress up as a researcher. Children can find out what birds really do eat with poo analysis, radio tracking birds and measuring a life-size swan.
If the weather isn’t great, a trip to Slimbridge is still ideal. Pack the wellies and let the kids loose at Welly Boot Land, or head off on a Wild Safari to discover the wetlands in one of Slimbridge’s 4×4s.
Tickets cost from £13.45 for adults, free of charge for children under four-years-old, and from £7.90 for children aged four to 16. Slimbridge is open from 9.30am to 5.30pm daily.
Visit www.wwt.org.uk directly.
Throughout the summer holidays at Roses Theatre in Tewkesbury.
There’s so much to see at Roses Theatre this summer. For a colourful children’s show, Elmer The Patchwork Elephant will be coming along for a special performance on Wednesday 7 August 2019.
Sing, dance and clap along in the aisles when _Hairspray_rocks up from Thursday 15 to Saturday 17 August 2019. A perfect dose of heartwarming family fun, Hairspray is a great treat for families.
If all that isn’t enough, children can head under the sea for A Mermazing Pirate Adventure on Tuesday 27 August 2019. Complete with magic, songs and music, it’s bound to be a hit with the kids.
Offering great value cinema tickets, Roses Theatre’s film screenings are an ideal choice for a rainy day during the holidays. This summer’s film screenings include The Lion King, Toy Story 4 and Horrible Histories: The Movie to name a few.
Elmer The Patchwork Elephant is on Wednesday 7 August 2019 and tickets cost £12 for children and £14 for adults. Hairspray is on from Thursday 15 to Saturday 17 August 2019 and cost £14 for children and £16 for adults. A Mermazing Pirate Adventure is on Tuesday 27 August 2019 and tickets cost £12 for children and £14 for adults.
Visit rosestheatre.org directly.
Throughout the summer holidays at Eastnor Castle.
There’s so much happening at Eastnor Castle this summer. Starting with an air-dried clay workshop, before a roarsome Dinosaur Show, and even circus skills where you can clown around.
Treat the kids like royalty at Knights and Princess School or make a shelter at Bushcraft Survival this August. Not forgetting the Medieval Living History Camp, Air Ambulance Family Fun Day and the majestic Eastnor Castle itself.
While you’re there, kids can get lost in the knight’s maze, test their agility on the junior obstacle course and head to the adventure playground for a full day of summer holiday fun.
Make the most of your day at Eastnor and upgrade your ticket to gain entry to the castle. With medieval armour on display inside the castle, take a tour and feast your eyes on the spectacular setting.
Ticket prices cost from £7.50 for adults and £5 for children, with entry to the castle at an additional cost.
Visit eastnorcastle.com to purchase admission tickets.
Stagecoach West busses operate seven days a week throughout Gloucestershire. Plus, Park and Ride is also available.
Perfect for a family day out during the school holidays, Stagecoach West is offering fantastic value Explorer tickets, which allow four people to travel together for £15 on just one ticket.
Kids will love travelling on the bus itself and parents can sit back and relax as Stagecoach West heads to some of the county’s must-visit areas. Even better, the Explorer tickets allow families to hop on and off the bus, meaning you don’t have to just go to one destination, but can visit a few places in one day – all without breaking the bank!
Forget faffing around with car parking and opt for Stagecoach West’s Park and Ride service to get you into the centre of town, without the expense of paying for car parking nearer the shops and attractions.
Family Explorer tickets cost £15 for four people. Plan your journey by visiting stagecoachbus.com directly.
Book tickets and find out more by visiting stagecoachbus.com directly.
Tuesday 27 August 2019
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