There has been quite a hum of intrigue and anticipation regarding the opening of William’s Den, in North Cave, near Hull, particularly among local parents, and so we were very excited to be invited to go along and review, very shortly after they opened.
Petrolhead A had come home with an excellent school report and so we allowed him to bring a friend along when we visited too. Its always great to have another young persons opinion to include in our write ups.
All the Details about William’s Den
Where – William’s Den, North Cave, Brough, Post Code HU15 2LS
Opening – William’s Den is open every day (except Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day)
Sunday to Wednesday – 9:30am – 5:00pm
Thursday to Saturday – 9:30am – 7:00pm
Admission Prices –
|Child 3-17 years
|Child under 3 years
|Adult 18 years+
|Concession – Student / Over 65 / Disabled *||£6.00||Buy Tickets|
The first things that strike you as you enter the large reception area at William’s Den are that is large, modern, clean and impressive. The staff are warm, enthusiastic and helpful. The young lady on the reception desk gave each of the children wrist bands on which I wrote my mobile number – what an excellent safety measure – and she then ensured we knew where to find everything.
When we visit family orientated attractions I pay attention to the important but slightly dull mumsy things such as cleanliness, facilities, staff etc. How successful the attraction is on pleasing and entertaining children is based on my small peoples reactions and opinions – lets face it, kids have a fabulous way of saying things exactly how they see them. William’s Den was an absolute hit from the moment we arrived.
The outside area, on first glance appears simple, well organised and spacious. But on closer inspection, its so much more than that.
It is like a child has been asked to design a play area to include everything that a child would want. Because, frankly, that is so different to what adults think they should have or indeed, want them to have.
My three children flew off squealing in different directions – bearing in mind my six year old daughter is known to squeal enthusiastically just because its Wednesday, or because her apple is green , whereas its not as common in a 10 year old boy! For him to squeal is quite a big deal actually. They were all so excited to get stuck in and try everything.
Zip wires, climbing poles, tyre swings, sand pits, water activites, mud gardens, den building, tunnels, little hills surely designed and added with rolling down in mind ?!
The equipment at William’s Den is so well designed – it is safe and strong and sturdy. Children can be children, the equipment provided is designed to feed their imaginations and let them play and create and get mucky. And here I want to make a point that really struck me while we were enjoying our day at William’s Den. I think for most parents it fills our hearts with contentment and a feeling of achievement when our kids are having good old fashioned out door fun. Not glued to screens or playstation controllers, which incidentally, I do accept is part of modern life to some degree. But here they can chase around safely, being cowboys or fairies or Bear Grylls…and I have a favour to ask you, Mums,Dads, grandparents or god parents. Please let them. Please don’t nag them about getting wet in the water well, or getting muddy whilst making mud pies in the mud kitchen, or getting dirty dragging sticks to make a den. Take a change of clothes, take a towel, take baby wipes. But whatever you do don’t take away the fun. I heard so many parents moaning at their kids for getting a little bit damp and muddy and it made me a little sad.
There are lots of lovely benches for grown ups to sit and watch the little ones having fun, as well as picnic tables for, well, picnics.
It took some effort on my part to encourage the children to leave their dam and bridge building at the water activity area to go and explore inside. They were delighted they did though. Inside is awesome! Again, its like a child with a fabulous imagination has drawn a picture of their dream indoor play area. And a fairy godmother disguised as a genius architect/builder has created it.
It is beautiful to look at, a real work of art. It is large enough for adults to accompany their children if they wish, without fear of getting stuck in tunnels ( is it only me that has happened to?)
Everything about William’s Den is welcoming and family friendly. Even this ” Rules ” sign is delightful to read and puts you at ease and more than comfortable to ask for help if you need anything from one of the jolly staff members. Its very safety conscious without being harsh or scary.
The children had been playing inside for around 45 minutes when something extraordinary happened. It was quite a warm day and I thought they would like an ice cream. I had noticed a very nice cabin selling ice creams and drinks and thought a brief pit stop would be well received with the little warriors. I beckoned them to me and they reluctantly left their absolute favorite activity which consisted of sand, buckets and a pulley system. I asked them if they wanted to get an ice cream, fully expecting the usual choruses of “YESSSSSS PLEASEEEE!” Nope. “Thankyou but maybe later” – and they were gone again. Now, anyone that knows my little Princess D will tell you that she is a real foodie with a sweet tooth and passing up the opportunity of an ice cream is unheard of. Incredible.
Eventually, I did convince them to get an ice cream. There are plenty of flavours to choose from, plus sauces and chocolate flakes to add. Yummy!
Something else that made William’s Den different in a wonderful way, is how some of the activities encourage children to work together in teams. So kids who may never have met before are suddenly supporting and encouraging each other to build the coolest, sturdiest teepee. Or improving on their team work skills whilst filling sand buckets and sending them up the pulley system to a stranger at the top to fill the awaiting pipe and bucket. Just fantastic.
We stayed until late. We had a tremendous day. The children left tired, dirty and content. And whenever we discuss future days out they ask for one thing….
“Can we go back to William’s Den?”
If you are considering a visit i think that tells you all you need to know. We would love to hear about your William’s Den adventure!
Warmest thanks to William’s Den for inviting us to review their wonderful attraction