A typical weekend break at Coldwell Activity Centre

By Joanne Rowe | Blog

Jun 10

A weekend at Coldwell – a typical example of a perfect break

Most groups arrive at Coldwell on the start of their break a little apprehensive- they are going to a

location away from home, whether that be living with their parents, or a children’s home, often with

people they have only met once or twice, and sometimes it is the only break they have ever had. What

will the food be like? Will I be warm enough? What if I’m expected to do activities that frighten me?

Sometimes we have adult only groups, church groups, walkers, those here for training, and even the

most confident person can feel a little unsure of what to expect. Here at Coldwell we do our best to give

our young visitors the best experience we possibly can. They are welcomed with friendly faces, a warm

atmosphere, and the only rules and regulations we have are for the safety and well being of our guests.

One of the best things about Coldwell is that each group has exclusive use of the centre, so they won’t

have to share the premises with any other groups.

On arrival they will be welcomed by at least two members of staff, who will show them to their rooms

and go through any health and safety rules. All groups are welcome to stay on a self catering basis but if

they opt for full board then once they have unpacked their bags a delicious meal is waiting for them. The

group leaders have checked any dietary requirements in advance so we are well prepared for any fussy

eaters. An alternative meal can always be provided if needs be. Homemade pies, lasagne, and roast

dinners are amongst the favourites and we always get a great response for our quality and portion sizes.

Followed by a hearty home-made dessert- sticky toffee pudding, death by chocolate, or apple crumble

are the most popular- then everyone is ready for a chance to unwind, watch tv, play on the x-box, pool,

or watch a dvd on our full size cinema style screen. This is the time for groups to get to know each other

if they don’t already, to socialise, or even take part in something their team leaders have organised such

as ‘X-Factor’ competitions, disco’s, DVD night or a ghostly walk in the woods.

Coldwell staff leave after the evening meal and the group are then taken care of by their own leaders

whom they already know. Once they have tired themselves out then a warm, comfy bed is waiting,

already made up, in one of our 13 bedrooms. Some of them even have their own en-suite but the group

leaders usually grab those!

The next morning when the groups awake, Coldwell staff are back with a full English breakfast to kick

start the day. With vegetarian options available, together with cereal, toast, fruit juice or even a

continental breakfast, there is always something for everyone. Sausage and bacon butties are a special

favourite with local butchers produce and fresh bread.

Not all our groups choose to do activities with us- some of them have opted to do their own programme

of events or training, such as revision, bible classes, walking, cycling, anti-drugs or alcohol awareness, or

learning life and social skills to help them accomplish more in life. For those who are doing activities we

have a full and active programme laid on. Our accomplished, highly qualified and licensed instructors

will take the groups off on their chosen activity, be it archery, lazertag, rock climbing, bushcraft, or

canoeing. We even have a special local minibus firm we use to transport our guests to the activity

locations a little further afield if they don’t have their own transport. Nobody is left out- if there is

anyone in the group with a disability then the programme can be adapted to suit their individual needs.

Whatever activity is chosen we can guarantee that everyone will have a fantastic time doing things they

may never have done before. Boundaries will be pushed, fears overcome, and a sense of pride and

achievement is gained.

If the groups choose to remain on-site then a lovely lunch is prepared for the groups to enjoy inside-

jacket potatoes, home made pizza, or soup and sandwiches to warm them up, or in summer a picnic

lunch which can be taken outside. If the groups stay off-site then a packed lunch is prepared for them to

take with them for the day.

At the end of the day the groups return to Coldwell, usually worn out, for another delicious meal and to

chill and unwind.

The groups leave Coldwell to return home, often exhausted but happy, having had a fabulous

experience which we hope they will remember for years to come. Many visitors choose to return to

Coldwell year after year for many reasons, friendly staff, great food, exhilarating experiences and to

make new friends.

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