Showing posts with label School Holidays. Show all posts
Showing posts with label School Holidays. Show all posts

Sunday, 30 May 2021

Biggest Indoor Funfair Yet Returns to Liverpool This August! - Competition

It is so exciting to see a whole host of events being prepared for this summer, and like most families we cannot wait to enjoy plenty of time together visiting some fun attractions and enjoying ourselves. A couple of years ago we visited the Indoor Funfair in Liverpool and I am delighted to announce that it shall be returning once again for a spectacular 12 day event this August.

The UK's biggest indoor funfair is coming back to Liverpool later this year and this time it's even larger and visiting the city for longer. There will be more than 25 rides and inflatables that will feature across the full 90,000 sq. ft of space at Exhibition Centre Liverpool for the 12 day event in August.

It is an ambitious move for the organisers, but the extra space will not only mean more room for bigger attractions, but will also allow people to move around safely.

More than 25 rides and inflatables will feature across the full 90,000 sq.ft of space at Exhibition Centre Liverpool for the 12 day event in August.

Tickets are now on sale for the Indoor Funfair, which is filled with everything from dodgems, waltzers and The Twist to the cup and saucers. The UK's largest travelling funhouse will also be making its debut at this wonderful Liverpool event.

More rides and inflatables are set to be announced for the event, which takes place from the 11th to the 22nd August and offers unlimited access to rides during each session.

John Lowery, director of Indoor Funfair said: "We're looking forward to taking over the whole of Exhibition Centre Liverpool on the waterfront and bringing the biggest Indoor Funfair the city has ever seen.

"We know people are looking forward to finally having fun indoors without having to worry about the weather outside."

Faye Dyer, managing director of The ACC Liverpool Group, operator of Exhibition Centre Liverpool, said: "Indoor Funfair has become a firm fixture at Exhibition Centre Liverpool and we're looking forward to welcoming the organisers and visitors back.

"It's yet another example of a recognised brand showing confidence that our team will deliver a first class experience."

Fun for all the family at Indoor Funfair this August in Liverpool

Pre-booked tickets cost £10 for unlimited access to a three-hour session with spectator tickets priced at £3. There is also a special online offer of four riding wristbands for £36. Refreshments and any prize games are not included in the ticket price. 

Sessions run daily from 10am-1pm; 2pm-5pm and 6pm-9pm.

There is an early bird offer of evening session tickets for just £7.50 until 11th June.

Between 6pm-9pm on the 12th and 19th of August, there'll be autism-friendly sessions for those with sensory needs where the venue lights will be switched on, music will be turned down, ride lights switched off and rides slowed where possible.

For more information or to book, please visit the homepage: www.indoorfunfair.org, or follow on Facebook or Instagram.

We also have a very special competition to give you the chance to win a family ticket to the Indoor Funfair in Liverpool. If you would like to try your luck, then please read the terms and conditions and then enter using the gleam form below. Good Luck!


Win a Family Ticket to the Indoor Funfair Liverpool

Terms and Conditions

  • There is 1 (one) prize of a family ticket to the Indoor Funfair Liverpool
  • A family ticket is for 2 adults and up to 4 children
  • The winner may choose the date that they wish to attend with the exclusion of the opening session on 11th August (10am-1pm).
  • Entry is open to UK residents aged 18 years or over.
  • Competition closes on the 24th June 2021 at 11:59pm.
  • A winner shall be drawn within 7 days of the closing date and notified via email.
  • The winner will have 7 days to confirm their acceptance of the prize, before an alternative winner is drawn from the remaining eligible entries.
  • No bulk or third party entries
  • The winners details shall be shared with the promoter for the purpose of prize fulfilment. 
  • The prize is non-transferable and there is no cash alternative.
  • In the event of cancellation no alternative prize will be offered.
  • Additional Terms can be viewed on the Gleam entry form.
  • Entry to this giveaway confirms your acceptance of these terms and conditions.
*Disclaimer - This is a collaborative post. The details provided are believed to be correct at the time of writing, but are subject to change. I would therefore always recommend visiting the events/attractions own website prior to visiting in order to obtain the most up to date information.

Saturday, 24 August 2019

The Indoor Funfair Returns to Liverpool - A Review!

Back in April we visited the Indoor Funfair which was taking place in the Exhibition Centre, Liverpool. My children had a fantastic time and we thought that it was a great idea that offered excellent value for money.

We were therefore really excited to find out that it was returning to Liverpool for the summer holidays, opening on Friday 23rd August and remaining at the Exhibition Centre until the 1st September. Of course I didn't need to ask my children twice as to whether they would like to visit again, so we went along yesterday to the 10am til 1pm session to enjoy some family fun and see if there were any new rides on offer.


The week-long event, is set across almost 60,000 sq.ft of space and is packed full of a huge selection of rides that will be popular with families of all ages. Each visitor session lasts for three hours and offers unlimited access to rides during this time. There is a choice of session times which run daily from 10am til 1pm; 2pm til 5pm and 6pm til 9pm. The entry prices are very reasonable with rider wristbands costing only £10 per person, with spectator tickets priced at £2.

Usually we catch the train to Liverpool and then walk along the waterfront from James Street station, however with it being the school holidays and my husband being off, we decided to drive this time and parked right outside the venue at a cost of £7 for 5 hours parking. We thought that this was really reasonable based on the location and also meant that we could enjoy a walk around the nearby waterfront after visiting the fair.

We arrived right on 10 o'clock and was surprised to find no queue to get in. There was security at the main entrance conducting bag checks which was reassuring to see and we also saw security staff walking regularly around the venue throughout our visit. We collected our wristbands from the box office and then made our way into the exhibition hall.


On entering the hall, it appeared larger than our last visit and it felt as though there were more rides. When we visited in April, my 11 year old son had an amazing day, but was slightly disappointed that there were no dodgems. He was therefore delighted when he spotted them in the far corner and there are no prizes for guessing which ride he headed to first. In fact he actually ended up spending the first half hour of our session completely on the Dodgems, something which would have cost me a fortune at a normal travelling fair, so he was certainly ensuring that he was making the most of his unlimited rides.

Whilst Ben was busy working on his driving skills, both Riley and Emma enjoyed the Fun House and the large inflatable bouncy castle and slide. Once they had each finished doing their own thing for the first half hour we then regrouped and made our way round the hall together. My two older children also enjoy going on the smaller rides with their younger brother, so they were almost able to go on nearly every ride in the hall, apart from a couple where they were slightly too tall. Riley therefore loved that he could enjoy the rides with his siblings, especially the Monster Truck and Bumper Carz ride.


I definitely felt that the layout this time was much better and we really liked the fact that there was a lot of variety in the choice of rides. There also seemed to be more seating than on our previous visit, which was also a big bonus. I also strongly believe that they listened to customer feedback from April, as popular rides like the Miami, The Dodgems and Bumper Carz were all in attendance and had definitely been missed previously, so the selection and options available were perfect for both children and adults.

There was another brand new ride which caught Emma's attention and this was the Megaspin. As you enter the hall, this is located just to the right hand side and at first glance it simply looks like a wheel that spins you around. However, it does much more including full on upside down spins at both fast and slow speeds, with lots of twists and turns along the way too. It is certainly a ride for the thrillseekers and Emma was the only one brave enough out of our family to give it a go!


As well as the rides, there are some additional games stalls which do cost extra for the chance to win some prizes. Fortunately my children didn't ask to go on any of these, but it's worth taking some change with you if you think your family may want to try their luck. Some food and drink stalls are also available offering a variety of different snacks and drinks. We didn't use these so I am unsure of the costs.

Overall we had a fantastic morning and believe that the £10 wristband charge offers excellent value for money. The event felt well organised, secure and safe and every staff member that we interacted with seemed very friendly and polite. The range of rides was fantastic and we felt that there was a great choice available for all ages. Ultimately it is a very fun event to visit for a really reasonable price and we would not hesitate to return!

For full information on this event or to book tickets, you can visit the Indoor Funfair website or their social media pages on the following channels:

Website - https://indoorfunfair.org/liverpool
Twitter - @indoorfunfairuk
Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/IndoorFunfair/
Instagram - @indoorfunfair


*Disclaimer - We were invited to this event and provided with complimentary wristbands for the purpose of writing an honest review of our experience.

Monday, 13 May 2019

Windermere Lake Cruises & The Lakeland Motor Museum - A Review

In a recent blog post, I reviewed our experience at the Treetop Nets located at Brockhole Visitor Centre in the Lake District. We had an incredible time and plenty of fun, but once our two hour session was over, we were keen to see what else there was on offer in the area, as well as having a little bit of time to relax.

It can often be hard to find an activity where the parents get a little bit of time to chill out, without the kids immediately declaring their boredom, but we found the perfect solution by combining a Windermere Lake Cruise with a trip to the Lakeland Motor Museum.

We walked the short distance from the Treetop Nets to the Brockhole jetty, where there was a Windermere Lake Cruises ticket desk to purchase your tickets. You can also buy them online if you prefer and then simply exchange your booking confirmation for the tickets on arrival. We did the latter and exchanged our online booking voucher for tickets with minimal fuss. I had printed a copy of the timetable off the day before, so that we knew exactly where and when we could catch the boats throughout the day.

We had a Freedom of the Lake ticket including Lakeland Motor Museum entry, which meant that it could be used on any of the boats for a duration of 24 hours and that we could also use it to visit the museum. However, if you did only wish to travel on a particular route, then you can buy tickets specifically for the journey that you require. There are a great range of ticket options available, along with the choice of adding an attraction for greater value for money. Attractions that can be added are the Lakeland Motor Museum, the Lakes Aquarium and the Lakeside and Haverthwaite Steam Railway.


There was plenty of seating for us to wait on until our boat arrived and then when it started to come into the jetty, all the customers began to form an orderly queue. On first glance it looked as though our boat was nearly full, so I was slightly worried about us being able to find seats altogether. Whilst it was busy, there were in fact still plenty of seats available on the upper deck, so my family and I sat on two rows upstairs, so that we could get a great view of the scenery.

We had decided that we would travel to Bowness first, prior to visiting the Motor Museum, so as our boat travelled on a circular route, this meant that we firstly had to travel to Ambleside, before returning back past Brockhole and onto Bowness. This was a really relaxing and enjoyable boat journey which had the most picturesque backdrop to our travels. The boat guide pointed out some areas of significance and also highlighted some peaks to us in the distance. My children really enjoyed looking out for wildlife, as well as trying to spot some of the hotels and landmarks that were mentioned on the journey.


As we continued our journey to Bowness, we passed numerous other watercraft all enjoying time out on the lake. This varied from yachts and motor boats to kayaks and paddle boards. Riley loved waving to everyone as they went past and it was great to see so many people wave back.

On arrival in Bowness, my children immediately spotted an outdoor stall selling ice cream, so we disembarked and had a little walk around the waterfront, before purchasing a cone each for us all. There was also a little arcade that we played in for a while, before we continued further up the road in order to explore some of the town.

We had last visited the area a couple of years ago, so Riley couldn't quite remember his last trip, so we walked up to the outside of the Beatrix Potter Museum and took him for a look inside the shop. Both my boys collect coins, so they were keen to see if they had any of the new Peter Rabbit coins on sale.


After we had spent a short time in Bowness, we decided to catch another boat and then continue our onward journey to the Lakeland Motor Museum. I had printed the timetable off from the website previously, but there were also plenty of leaflets and boards which advised when the next departures were. Our boat was already boarding at the jetty and fortunately there wasn't a large queue, so we were able to get onboard straight away and find some seats.

There was a choice of seating available and as the weather had become quite cold and overcast, we decided to sit downstairs for the next part of our journey. There were some long seats with tables in between, along with large picture windows at the side, so you could still see all the scenery as you travelled. A small refreshment shop was also located downstairs, so we enjoyed some hot drinks and snacks to warm us up.

All of the journeys that we had with Lake Windermere Cruises were really smooth along the water and not bumpy at all. I sometimes get a bit dizzy or light headed when travelling on boats, but these cruises were really relaxing and enjoyable and it was nice to be able to enjoy this time together as a family.

If, like us, you decide to visit the Lakeland Motor Museum, then you will need to catch a bus once you arrive at Lakeside. These run regularly and in time with the boat arrivals and departures, with the journey on the bus taking approximately 10 minutes. It is a great little service which makes exploring the area really easy.


On our arrival to the Lakeland Motor Museum, my children immediately remembered it. It has some superb displays and exhibits that my kids always find really fascinating. The museum itself is located within a converted mill and it boasts a massive collection of over 30,000 exhibits that cover a wide range of transportation from the twentieth century. As well as the main museum, there is also a separate exhibit in an adjacent building, that is dedicated to The Bluebird and the racing career of Sir Malcolm and Donald Campbell.

As we entered the main shop and reception area, my children were provided with some quiz books that they could fill in as we had a look around and they were really pleased to see that some of the questions were different from our previous visit. The quiz book encouraged them to read the information on the displays, which helped them to learn more and gain a greater understanding of the vehicle that they were looking at.

My eldest son found the original prices of the cars really interesting, so he downloaded an app whilst there, that allowed you to convert historical prices into the modern day equivalent. One vehicle originally cost £400 new which sounded so inexpensive, but once you converted this to today's money, it would have been the same as thousands of pounds.


There were some new exhibits in place that had arrived since our last visit, so it was great to be able to have a look at some new vehicles that we had not seen before. It is actually quite amazing how they manage to fit so many displays in one place. Everything is so well laid out and the route through the museum is really easy to follow. The extensive car collection covers a large time span and features some wonderful cars ranging from prestige and luxurious, to performance and iconic.


Along with the vehicles, there are also some really fun shop displays, as well as old vehicle and fuel station signs all adorned along the walls. As an added bonus there is also a small room upstairs that features some old arcade style games. Each of the games cost 20p to play and there is a change machine so that you can exchange a £1 for a few coins. My son Ben loved the Super Steer-A-Ball game and managed to get his timing to perfection so that he could complete the route successfully.

There was also a fantastic display of bicycles and motorbikes upstairs in what was quite a magnificent collection. With so many to look at and compare, it was really interesting to view some of the older and more unique designs that varied quite a lot to todays modern comparisons.


My youngest son Riley really enjoyed learning about the Bluebird and he even chose to watch the video that played in the exhibit, sitting nice and quietly and listening to everything that was being said in the documentary. He absolutely loves to learn and find out new and interesting facts, so he was amazed hearing all about the record attempts that took place on the lake. Another couple visiting actually commented on how well behaved and quiet he was, which was a lovely compliment to receive.

Once we had finished looking around all of the exhibits, we returned to the shop with our completed quiz books so that the children could claim their prize. They were all rewarded for their efforts with a lovely little medal, which Riley was particularly proud of, especially as he had managed to answer most of the questions all by himself.


Overall we had a fantastic time with both Windermere Lake Cruises and the Lakeside Motor Museum. The boats looked really well maintained and all the staff on board seemed very accommodating and friendly. A small refreshments bar on board ensured that we could buy some hot drinks and snacks, whilst enjoying a leisurely cruise around the lake. Riley absolutely loved waving to the other boats that went past, whilst Ben enjoyed looking for wildlife both in and around the lake. The on-board commentary ensured that we didn't miss anything of significance and this also kept the children interested as they tried to spot what was being described by the guide.

The Lakeland Motor Museum was well enjoyed by my children and although we have visited previously, they still found it just as fascinating as our previous visit. There were some new exhibits that we had not seen before and the quiz that children are provided with on entry was also different. My kids really enjoyed looking for all the answers throughout the museum and also had a great time playing on the vintage games in the upper floor. Both attractions were superb and it was a fantastic way to spend a relaxing afternoon together.

For more information on Windermere Lake Cruises or the Lakeland Motor Museum, then you can visit their websites or their social media pages on the following channels:

Windermere Lake Cruises

Website - https://www.windermere-lakecruises.co.uk/
Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/windermerelakecruises
Twitter - https://twitter.com/Windermereboats
Instagram - https://www.instagram.com/windermerelakecruises/

Lakeland Motor Museum

Address: Lakeland Motor Museum Ltd, Old Blue Mill, Backbarrow, Ulverston, Cumbria, LA12 8TA
Website - www.lakelandmotormuseum.co.uk
Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/LakelandMotorMuseum/
Twitter - https://twitter.com/LakeMotorMuseum
Instagram - https://www.instagram.com/lakelandmotor/


*Disclaimer - We were provided with a complimentary Freedom of the Lake & Motor Museum Ticket for the purpose of providing an honest review of our experience. Opinions are my own unless stated otherwise. All details provided are believed to be correct at the time of writing, however these can be subject to change for example admission, prices and opening times. I would therefore always recommend visiting the attractions own website prior to visiting in order to obtain the most up to date information.

Wednesday, 24 April 2019

Family Fun with Googly Eyes by University Games - A Review

Keeping my kids occupied during the school holidays can sometimes be quite a task. Whilst we enjoy regular days out, our budget will only stretch so far, therefore it means that occasionally we need to find some ways to entertain ourselves at home.

This is when I find that board games can be a great source of entertainment and they also provide you with the perfect opportunity to spend some family time together. University Games have a great selection available in the shops and when we were recently offered the chance to review their Googly Eyes game, I knew that the Easter holidays would most certainly provide us with the chance to try it out.

Googly Eyes is described as 'The drawing game of wacky vision!'. All of my children love to draw, so as soon as I discovered that there was an artistic element involved, I quickly realised that it would be the perfect game for us.


Googly Eyes by University Games comes in a brightly coloured and interesting box. There is a clear plastic window where you can see the glasses inside, along with some images of the contents and someone drawing a picture. This gives you a slight hint as to what the game involves.

On the reverse of the box there is a great contents picture which shows you everything that is included in the box. There is also a basic sentence that gives a simple idea as to how the game works which reads 'Put on the wacky vision-altering glasses and race against time to draw your team to the finish.'

The full contents include:
  • 1 x Gameboard
  • 1 x Pair of Wacky Oversized Glasses
  • 3 x Sets of tinted, interchangeable lenses
  • 4 x Plastic playing pieces
  • 1 x Drawing Pad
  • 1 x Pencil
  • 1 x Dice
  • 1 x Timer
  • 54 x Challenge Cards (this equates to a total of 162 challenges)
  • 1 x Instructions
Setting up the game was easy and was simply a case of removing all the items from the box, placing the board on the table and putting the cards in a neat pile. I then read through the instructions for everyone so that we had a clear understanding of how to play before we began. Each of my children were desperate to try on the glasses, so we actually spent ten minutes just wearing the glasses and seeing how the different lenses compared. Once we had taken some funny photos we made a start and Riley excitedly threw the dice.


To play the game the first player rolls the dice and moves their counter along to the corresponding colour. This can be green (easy), yellow (medium) or blue (difficult). Once you have landed on a space, you then select a card and need to draw the item that matches the colour your counter is on. Each colour is also allocated a set amount of time for your to do your drawing, with green having 15 seconds, yellow having 30 seconds and the most difficult of blue being given 45 seconds.

The players team mate(s) then need to try and correctly guess what is being drawn against the clock. Of course this sounds quite simple, but the glasses make the task quite tricky, especially if you are unlucky enough to land on the blue space where you also have to switch hands. This means that you have to wear the most difficult of lenses, whilst also drawing with the opposite hand to which you would normally use.

The glasses fitted Emma (12), Ben (11) and myself really well, however my six year old did need to hold them in place at times. Funnily enough he chose not to hold them in place when he had the blue lenses in, so I am convinced that he could see through the gap, though he would never admit to this. I really liked how it encouraged my youngest child to think how he could draw things, so for example he had the challenge of drawing a tree house, so he quickly thought about this and drew a separate tree and then a house next to it, which made it easy for me to guess.


If the team player guesses correctly then you roll the dice again to move along the board. The winner is the team that reach the Finish point first.

I seemed to find the blue lenses far more difficult than the children and some of my drawings were hilarious as I literally could not see what I was doing.

Overall we had a fantastic time playing Googly Eyes and it provided plenty of laughter. It is a great game to play as a family and would also be the perfect game to bring out at a party or family gathering. It is simple to understand and my six year old son grasped the concept of the game instantly without the need for much explanation. The contents were all good quality so I had no need to be concerned about any parts breaking. One thing that I particularly liked was that everything fitted back into the box really easily, which I have found can be quite a challenge with some other games and smaller parts often go missing. However with Googly Eyes, everything has its own place in the box so it is easy to store away safely ready to play again another day. My family and I would happily recommend this game to others and we have already decided that it is going to become our new travel game to take with us when we go on holiday.

The game has an RRP of £19.99 and is recommended for children aged 7+. It is available to purchase from most good toy retailers including Argos, Smyths, Sainsburys, Debenhams and Amazon.

For further information on Googly Eyes or other University Games, then please visit their website or social media pages which can be found on the following channels:

Website - www.university-games.co.uk
Twitter - @ugamesUK
YouTube - University Games


*Disclaimer: We were sent the Googly Eyes game free of charge for the purpose of writing an honest review of the product. All thoughts and opinions are my own unless otherwise stated. This post contains an Amazon affiliate link which means that I may receive a small commission should you choose to purchase from this retailer.

Thursday, 18 April 2019

The Indoor Funfair at Liverpool Exhibition Centre - A Review

With the ever changing weather at the moment, it is great to have the option of some indoor attractions. We were therefore really excited to learn that the Indoor Funfair was heading to Liverpool, which was perfectly timed with my children's school holidays. On Tuesday morning we caught the train into the city, to visit this brand new event and find out what was on offer for some family fun.

We travelled on the train from our home town via Chester and onwards to James Street station in Liverpool. I used our family and friends railcard (which has already more than paid for itself) and managed to get a return ticket for one adult and three children for only £9.40. Once we arrived at James Street we had an enjoyable walk along the waterfront towards the Indoor Funfair and it took approximately ten minutes at a steady pace.


We were booked in as guests for the 10am til 1pm slot and we arrived shortly after the start time at approximately 10:10am. Due to our slightly late arrival, there were absolutely no queues outside and we walked straight into the building. The first thing that I noticed were that there were good security measures in place and several security staff were on the door conducting bag checks. We also saw another patrolling the corridors to the attraction entrance and several more in the main hall, which I found to be very reassuring at a family event.

We collected our wristbands and made our way into the Indoor Funfair and my children were excited to see what rides were available. I saw that the cost for guests was only £10 per person, or £2 if just spectating, which for unlimited rides for three hours sounded great value for money. Under 3's are also able to visit free of charge, but understandably their are quite limited rides available for that age group.

Directly opposite the entrance were a selection of 2p machines which my children love, so before we even had the chance to walk around, my son had already put a pound in the change machine to try his luck at winning some sweets and chocolate that he had spotted on the edge. Once they had each played on here for a short while, we started to take a good look around the hall and had a walk around before choosing where to start.



It was slightly smaller than I expected and initially I was unsure if there would be enough to keep all of us entertained for three hours. However I needn't have been concerned, as it actually turned out to be the perfect length of time to enjoy everything a couple of times and my children had a great choice of rides to go on. Our only slight disappointment was that there were no dodgems, which is my eldest sons favourite, but he soon got over this after finding plenty of other fun things to do.

We started with the mini Dragon Coaster which was my youngest sons choice. This is basically a mini rollercoaster that travels at slow speed, making it ideal for little ones. Fortunately my older two children enjoy spending time with their little brother, so they were also happy to go on the smaller rides with him to keep him company.

We then moved on to the large inflatable slide which is recommended as being suitable for ages 5+. The member of staff running this controlled the queue well and would only allow one person up the slide at a time to ensure safety. My daughter also tried to go on this, but was slightly taller than the height limit so was turned away and although she was slightly disappointed, I was happy to see that safety rules were being followed and enforced. My two boys loved this slide however and travelled down really fast numerous times.

As Emma had been unable to go on the slide, I told her to choose where she would like to go next, so she picked the large swing chair ride and enjoyed a couple of goes on that whilst her brothers went on the mini train ride next to it. She then moved on to something a little more fast paced and hopped on to the waltzers, whilst her brothers had a second turn on the train. Before we knew it the first hour had passed so we decided to grab a seat and have a drink.


The food and drink costs would be my only complaint about the event as they were expensive. Obviously you dont HAVE to purchase anything and this is optional, but in three hours most people are likely to need a drink and I was a little annoyed at having to pay £2.50 each for a can. The food was also overpriced, but luckily my children have a good sense of value and refused to let me buy anything hot, instead suggesting that we went to a bakery on the way home to get some sausage rolls and cakes. I did however buy two bags of candyfloss for them to pick at throughout the morning which cost £2 per bag.

Once we had finished our drinks we continued around the funfair and Riley went on the Mini Miami which he absolutely loved. It would have been nice to have also had a full size version of this, as it is always a popular ride, but Riley absolutely loved the mini version and was even brave enough to put his arms in the air (well for a millisecond anyway)!

Other favourites included The Frogs, The Helter Skelter and The Funhouse, which my children went on numerous times. Again time had passed quickly and we soon realised that there was only half an hour left, so we made our way over to the Energiser Assault Course. This is an absolutely huge inflatable which took up an entire wall of the exhibition hall and is packed full of obstacles and slides. My children thought this was fantastic and spent the entire remainder of our time at the attraction on this inflatable, taking it in turns to race one another.


Overall we had a great time and felt that the £10 entry fee being charged was very reasonable for what was on offer. We have been to travelling funfairs before that tend to charge around £2.50 per ride, so considering that you can go on the Indoor Funfair rides an unlimited amount of times in three hours, it really is great value for money. I felt that the event was well organised, secure and safe which are all essential elements when organising a family event and all of the staff that we interacted with were friendly and helpful. My only criticism would be the costs of the food and the games because whilst these are optional expenses, it is highly likely that children are going to want to try them at some point during the visit.

The Indoor Funfair will be at the Exhibition Centre in Liverpool until Monday 22nd April. There are three times slots available each day which are 10am til 1pm, 2pm til 5pm or 6pm til 9pm. Entry costs £10 per person for unlimited rides, £2 for a spectator and Under 3's go free. Height and age restrictions apply to some rides and there are also additional charges for the games and food stalls.

For full information on this event or to book tickets, you can visit the Indoor Funfair website or their social media pages on the following channels:

Website - https://indoorfunfair.org/liverpool
Twitter - @indoorfunfairuk
Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/IndoorFunfair/
Instagram - @indoorfunfair


*Disclaimer - We were invited to this event and provided with complimentary wristbands for the purpose of writing an honest review of our experience.

Monday, 15 April 2019

Our Visit to the Salford Museum and Art Gallery and Ordsall Hall - A Review

On Sunday we were invited along to the Salford Museum and Art Gallery, as well as the beautiful Ordsall Hall, so that we could experience two lovely family friendly attractions and have an enjoyable day out together. We have never visited either of these places before, so we were a little unsure as to what to expect, as we set off on the short journey along the motorway. The best thing about both of these attractions is that they are free places to visit (excluding parking/additional activities) and so they are ideal to keep families occupied during the school holidays.

We travelled to the Salford Museum and Art Gallery first, which opens at 11:30am on a Sunday. We thought that it was easy to find and the post code we entered into the sat nav took us straight there with no issues. I did notice that there were also plenty of signs showing the way as we got closer, so we could have also relied on these if we had needed to. 

We arrived shortly before it opened, so parking in the small pay and display car park was no problem, however there are limited spaces, so I would definitely recommend arriving early during peak periods to ensure that you can park. I do believe that there are alternative car parks nearby, though I am unsure of the exact location of these.

On entering the museum, my son decided that he would like to start upstairs first, so we made our way to the galleries. My daughter is a keen artist, so she was looking forward to seeing some modern art, whilst Riley finds really old paintings fascinating and likes to imagine what the people in the portraits were like. It therefore seemed an ideal place to begin and we entered the first hall.


We thought that this was beautifully presented, with a huge selection of art work featured on every wall. There was also a fun activity for children to enjoy, which involved selecting a hat and then trying to find a painting which had the same hat in it. Riley loved this and it really encouraged him to look at the pictures in detail. It would be great if more hats could be added to the collection as I am sure Riley could have spent quite a long time enjoying this activity.

Riley also spotted a large painting behind the Queen Victoria photo opportunity, which he was mesmerised by. He kept looking at it and noticing something different each time, whilst repeatedly calling me over so that he could show me his new discoveries. I had been a little unsure as to whether Riley would enjoy the art gallery initially, but he really loved it and had much more fun that I had expected him too. This gallery was also the perfect setting for an epic game of eye spy and he loved trying to find something really difficult for me to guess.


We then made our way to the next gallery which had a wide range of different art from over the years. My daughter Emma is a very talented artist, so this part of the visit really appealed to her. The art ranged from the beautiful to the peculiar and again Riley enjoyed looking at everything. One thing that I particularly liked about the museum, was that in each area, there would be a hands on activity for children to enjoy, so Riley liked trying these throughout the morning.


The last gallery we visited whilst upstairs was the A-Z exhibit, which featured a great range of items ranging from A to Z. We had fun looking at them all and Riley found some very fun and strange objects whilst we made our way around the room. It was an easy exhibit for children to understand and we really liked the way that everything had been displayed.


After spending a good length of time upstairs, we made our way down to Lark Hill Place, which is a replica Victorian Street. It really is a treat and my children absolutely loved looking through the shop windows and observing all the objects and clothing on display. As you walk up and down the street there is a great range of shops and living rooms all available to view and you could be forgiven for thinking that you had genuinely travelled back in time. 


My son's favourite part however, was getting dressed up in traditional Victorian clothing and visiting the sweet shop, where a lovely lady weighed out some sweets for us. Riley is really inquisitive so he spent some time asking lots of questions and looking at the weights and the choice of sweets available. He chose some white chocolate mice in the end, whilst my daughter selected a mixture of sweets. There is no specific price for the bag of sweets and instead visitors are asked to make a donation instead, which I thought was a lovely idea.


There were also some other hands on activities such as weighing out fruit and vegetables, but on the most part my children just really enjoyed looking around and imagining what life must have been like in the Victorian era. If you are up for a challenge though, then there are also some activity cards at the entrance to Lark Hill Place that give you some tasks to try and they are a great idea to get children interested and involved.

Once we had finished in Lark Hill Place we decided to enjoy some lunch and visit the onsite cafe, which provided some lovely light bite meal options, such as baguettes, sandwiches, toasties and soup. I chose the tuna mayo baguette with a cappuccino which was absolutely delicious. My husband chose the same, but with a slice of Victoria sponge cake too, whilst my children opted for the kids lunch box pack that included a nice variety of items such as a sandwich, biscuit, fruit juice and crisps.


After leaving the Salford Museum and Art Gallery, we made the short journey to Ordsall Hall. Distance wise, this isn't too far away, but due to the one way system in place and the traffic, it took us approximately 10 minutes to get from one site to the other. Initially I thought we were in the wrong place as it looked like we were heading into an industrial estate, but as we continued, I was very surprised to suddenly see the magnificent building and grounds right in the middle.

The car parking was pay and display again, but there were plenty of spaces available so we had no issue with finding a spot to park. It was then just a short walk over to the main entrance, which allowed us to view the exterior of Ordsall Hall on our way.


As we entered the property we were greeted by a lovely lady who asked us whether it was our first time visiting. She then proceeded to show us a map and also advised us on the best route to take and told us a little bit of history about the hall. However, Riley had decided that he wanted to be our tour guide and so the advised route was soon forgotten, as we were taken on a little adventure by our six year old. 

He absolutely loves pretend play, so he was in his element pretending to show us around and tell us some made up history. Fortunately there were plenty of display boards throughout the property so we were able to obtain the correct factual information in between Riley's little talks. It was great to see him enjoying himself and he had the opportunity to get dressed up again whilst in the great hall and enjoy a pretend feast.


We all found the property really interesting and despite it being busy, we were able to make our way around and enjoy the attraction without any issues. We also saw many families taking part in the Easter trail, where you had to search for some Easter bunnies and win a prize at the end, which we thought was a really good idea.

Once we had made our way around Ordsall Hall, we stopped in the small cafe for a drink and snack. My husband and I both enjoyed a caramel shortbread, whilst the kids opted for a muffin and a cookie, along with some cold drinks. Tables are limited indoors, but in the summer months I  would imagine that you could make use of the seating outside and enjoy the lovely surroundings. 


Overall we had a wonderful day out in Salford, especially as we were visiting two attractions that we had never been to, or actually heard of before. Both sites are places that we would definitely visit again in the future and we would most certainly like to return to Ordsall Hall on a warm sunny day with a picnic. I also believe that there are activities held at both venues throughout the year, so it will be great to see what is on offer during the summer holidays. We would recommend a visit to both venues, for a low-cost and interesting family day out.

For further information on the Salford Museum and Art Gallery or Ordsall Hall, then you can visit their website or social media pages on the following channels:

Salford Museum and Art Gallery

Address - Salford Museum and Art Gallery, Peel Park, The Crescent, M5 4WU
Twitter - @SalfordMuseum
Instagram - @salford_museum

Opening days and times vary, so please check the attractions own website in order to obtain the most up to date information prior to visiting.

Ordsall Hall

Address - 322 Ordsall Lane, Salford, M5 3AN
Twitter - @OrdsallHall
Instagram - ordsall_hall

Opening days and times vary, so please check the attractions own website in order to obtain the most up to date information prior to visiting.


*Disclaimer - This is a collaboration post with Salford Leisure. All thoughts and opinions are my own unless otherwise stated. Details provided are believed to be correct at the time of writing, but information such as admissions, prices, or opening hours are subject to change. I would therefore always recommend visiting the attractions own website prior to visiting in order to obtain the most up to date information.

Sunday, 25 March 2018

Cinderella at St. Helens Theatre Royal - A Review

Once upon a time, you would have to wait until Christmas if you wanted to enjoy the family fun of a pantomime. However, in recent years the popularity of these shows has certainly been recognised, with both Easter and Summer pantos now becoming more common. As a theatre lover, it is great to see an increase in family orientated shows being available throughout the whole year and a pantomime can also offer the perfect introduction to live entertainment for young children.

I have read many great reviews of pantomimes that have been held at St Helens Theatre Royal in the past, so when the opportunity arose for us to go and watch Regal Entertainments magical Easter production of Cinderella we literally jumped at the chance. We regularly review shows in the North West region, but this was actually the first time that we had visited St Helen's Theatre Royal, so it was also nice for us to be able to visit a venue that we had not been to before.

Cinderella has been described as a fun filled show that has something on offer for the whole family and I would definitely have to agree. It is packed full of comedy, music, singing and dancing that not only brings a smile to your face, but has you moving and clapping in your seat too! Magic and enchantment also features throughout with sparkling costumes, a fabulous fairy tale carriage and a stellar cast.

Lee Latchford-Evans 'steps' into the role of Prince Charming fantastically well and is really suited for the part. His charismatic and bright personality shine through and with a notably strong singing voice, his musical performances throughout the show do not disappoint. Despite being best known for his role in STEPS, Lee is also an accomplished actor who has starred in musical theatre, film, TV and pantomime over the years. His casting in this show certainly helped to make it a 'steptacular' one and the end performance that featured a STEPS medley, was an absolute delight to watch and sing along to.

Photo Credit: David Munn Photography
Georgina Parkinson plays the beautiful Cinderella and my children really enjoyed her vocal performances. She had many scenes with Lewis Devine as Buttons and we all felt that they both worked really well together. Buttons managed to build up a good rapport with the audience throughout the show with his comical timing and jokes which helped to ensure the pantomime tradition of audience participation.

Photo Credit: David Munn Photography
Starring as the Fairy Godmother is Samantha Palin, whose singing voice was so powerful and amazing that it was a pleasure to listen to. It was no surprise to then read in the brochure that she has starred as the lead vocalist on board some of the worlds most prestigious cruise liners. There was one part of the show where she wowed the audience and even my husband (who is not easily impressed) turned to me and said her voice was incredible. Andrew Geater also features in the cast as Dandini, who has a very commanding stage presence.

The highlight for me though was of course The Ugly Sisters who brought some added comical value to the show. Resident Dame Si Foster was wonderful and was already a favourite of ours from his appearance in the Wizard of Oz, that we saw during it's Stockport run last year. Teamed up with Mark Newell to make the Kylie and Kendall Ugly Sisters double act, they created some wonderful laugh out loud moments, that were matched by equally impressive costumes.

Photo Credit: David Munn Photography
The set worked well for such an intimate theatre and the closing scenes of part 1 where the fairy tale carriage was created was magical. My youngest son was captivated as he watched the transformation of the pumpkin and was completely surprised to see real Shetland Ponies up on the stage. Credit must also be given to the young dancers who help to make this particular scene so marvellous.

Photo Credit: David Munn Photography
After the interval, we were treated to a very special interview with Button's best friend. I won't reveal too much about this as I wouldn't want to spoil the surprise, but my children thought it was absolutely hilarious. Comedy was a very strong part of the second half with plenty of entertainment to provide some good belly laughs. This combined with the dazzling ballroom display and the spectacular finale made it the perfect pantomime to enjoy together as a family.

The music featured during the panto had been selected well, with a combination of 80's favourites such as 'Holding out for a Hero' and some modern day chart toppers such as Rita Ora's 'Anywhere'. As the show progressed though I began to wonder why the audience had not been treated to a performance of a STEPS song, given Lee Latchford-Evans inclusion in the cast. However, this was simply a case of saving the best til last and sure enough the closing moments of the show provided the audience with an incredible STEPS medley. This not only sounded brilliant, but looked fantastic on stage too with the perfectly timed dancing of the whole cast.

Overall we think that Regal Entertainments Ltd have done a fantastic job of producing a family pantomime that is suitable for all ages. We all thoroughly enjoyed the show and with ticket prices starting from only £13, it is the perfect show to keep everyone entertained during the Easter holidays.

Listing Details

Show - Regal Entertainments Ltd presents Cinderella
Dates - Saturday 24th March to Sunday 15th April
Times - Performance times vary, so please visit the website for the most up to date information.
Venue - St Helens Theatre Royal, Corporation Street, St. Helens, Merseyside, WA10 1LQ

Tickets - From £13*
*All prices are inclusive of a £1 per seat transaction fee. On-line bookings are subject to an additional 50p per seat on-line processing fee.

Box Office - 01744 756000
Website - www.sthelenstheatreroyal.com
Twitter - @TheatreRoyalStH
Facebook - www.facebook.com/St-Helens-Theatre-Royal

Photo Credit: David Munn Photography

*Disclaimer - We were provided with complimentary tickets for the purpose of this review. All opinions are our own unless otherwise stated. Photographs by David Munn Photography.

Monday, 12 February 2018

Dates for your Diary - Storyhouse Chester Announces a Great Line-Up of Family Shows for Spring 2018

Storyhouse has revealed its exciting programme of children's shows for the Spring Season 2018 - promising plenty of fun for all the family at the Chester theatre.

With four fantastic shows, written and produced specifically for children, there's no excuse for youngsters to be bored during the half-term break or the coming months.

The first show to take to the stage this season is Captain Flinn & The Pirate Dinosaurs 2: The Magic Cutlass on Tuesday 20th February.

Based on the best-selling children's books, Flinn, Pearl and Tom are in the middle of their school play when their old nemesis, Mr T the T-Rex, appears and kidnaps them, forcing the children to hunt for the secretive Magic Cutlass - a sword that grants the holder any wish.


Young fans of dinosaurs have a real treat to look forward to on Saturday 7th April and Sunday 8th April when Dinosaur World Live comes to Storyhouse.

Dare to experience the dangers and delights of the dinosaur world with this incredible interactive show. Youngsters are invited to join an intrepid explorer  across unchartered territories to discover a pre-historic world of astonishing (and remarkably life-like) dinosaurs. Meet a host of impressive creatures, including every child's favourite flesh-eating giant the Tyrannosaurus Rex, a Triceratops, Giraffatitan, Microraptor and Stegosaurus.

Dino fans can meet their favourites during a special meet and greet after the Dinosaur World Live performances.


The mischevious and hilarious Gangsta Granny takes to the Storyhouse stage during the Easter Holidays, on Wednesday 11th April to Saturday 14th April.

Based on the books by the best-selling children's author David Walliams, Gangsta Granny and her grandson Ben are about to embark on the adventure of a lifetime together. This award-winning West End production is brought to stage by the acclaimed producers of Horrible Histories.

Fans of dance and music are also catered for as world music group Kabantu return to Storyhouse on Wednesday 21st February. After proving to be a big hit at the Chester venue last June, the quintet perform as part of their Debut Album Tour, which has been produced by Mercury Prize nominated Gerry Diver.

Storyhouse Artistic Director Alex Clifton said: "We are thrilled to present such a varied and exciting programme for families over the coming months. Following the success of our Christmas show, The Secret Seven, we want to continue to engage families and young people as much as possible Whether that's seeing a show in the theatre or creating something together in the children's library."

Storyhouse is also producing its annual WayWord half-term festival between the 17th-24th February. The week-long festival is dedicated to families and young people, and features Gruffalo illustrator Axel Scheffler, silent discos, stand-up comedy for kids, a raft of workshops, tea-time movies and free arts and crafts.

Tickets for all events are on sale now and can be booked online, over the phone, or in person at the theatre.

Storyhouse has a dynamic pricing policy on the majority of shows, ensuring that the earlier you book your tickets, guarantees the best seats at the lowest price.

For further information on these events and more, please visit www.storyhouse.com

Friday, 29 September 2017

The Wizard of Oz at The Epstein Theatre Liverpool - Competition

Get ready to go on a magical adventure over the rainbow with Regal Entertainments and their enchanting pantomime production of the Wizard of Oz. Due to the success and popularity of the show, The Wizard of Oz pantomime is back on the yellow brick road and will be embarking on a mini tour this October with dates in Southport, Liverpool and Rhyl.

The critically acclaimed panto production from Regal Entertainments visits The Epstein Theatre from Friday 27th October to Sunday 29th October, making it the perfect half-term treat for all little munchkins!

To celebrate, we have a family ticket to give away to the Liverpool show at The Epstein Theatre on Friday 27th October at 6pm. Read on for more information and for details on how to enter.

Eastenders actress Cheryl Fergison will continue to lead the cast as the Wicked Witch of the West, whilst BBC Pitch Battle star and singing sensation Maddie Hope Coelho steps into the role of Dorothy. Cheryl and Maddie will be joined by X Factor star David Heath as the Scarecrow, the charismatic Philip McGuiness playing the Tinman and the hilarious Richard Hazlewood as the cowardly lion.


The Wizard of Oz is a firm family favourite which tells the story of young Dorothy Gale and her dog Toto, as they embark on a wondrous adventure over the rainbow and in the magical land of Oz. Regal Entertainments' panto version of this classic family show includes an hilariously funny script, dazzling costumes and sets, plus a wealth of brilliant songs and show-stopping choreography.

In true pantomime fashion, the show is filled with an entertaining cast who provide a wide array of songs, jokes and slapstick comedy that is suitable for the whole family. We were fortunate to attend the show during its popular Stockport Plaza run in the summer holidays, and it had us giggling from beginning to end. You can read our review here: Wizard of Oz Review

Tickets are now on sale. Book early to avoid disappointment.

*The cast is subject to change.

To learn more about Regal Entertainments Ltd, you can visit their social media pages here:

Facebook: RegalEntertainmentsLtd
Twitter: @RegalEntsLtd

Full Tour Listing Details

Southport Theatre, The Promenade, Southport, PR9 0DZ
Tuesday 24th to Thursday 26th October
1pm and 5pm
Tickets: From £11 / Groups (20+): All Seats £13 + 1 in 20 go free / Schools: £9 - 1 teacher in 10 goes free.
To book call 0844 871 3021 or visit ATG Tickets

The Epstein Theatre, Hanover House, 85 Hanover Street, Liverpool, L1 3DZ
Friday 27th to Sunday 29th October
Fri: 6pm | Sat: 10:30am, 1pm, 6pm | Sun: 12pm, 4pm.
Tickets: Adult £18/ Concession £16/ Family (2 Adults, 2 Children) £60
Groups (20+): All Seats £13 + 1 in 20 go free
To book call 0844 888 4411 or visit www.epsteinliverpool.co.uk

Rhyl Pavilion, E Parade, Rhyl, LL18 3AQ
Monday 30th to Tuesday 31st October
Monday 6pm, Tuesday 10:30am, 1pm, 5:30pm
Tickets: From £14 / Groups (20+): All Seats £12 + 1 in 20 go free
To book call 01745 330000 or visit www.rhylpavilion.co.uk

Competition

We have a fabulous competition for our readers, to give you the chance to win a family ticket for the 6pm performance on Friday 27th October at The Epstein Theatre Liverpool. Please check the terms and conditions and if you would like to enter, then please do so, using the Gleam form below. Good Luck!

Win a Family Ticket to see The Wizard of Oz at The Epstein Theatre, Liverpool

Terms and Conditions
  • There is 1 (one) prize of a family ticket to the 6pm performance on Friday 27th October 2017 at The Epstein Theatre, Hanover House, 85 Hanover Street, Liverpool, L1 3DZ.
  • A Family ticket is for 2 adults and 2 children, or alternatively 1 adult and 3 children.
  • The winner shall be required to collect their family ticket from the box office, prior to the show.
  • Tickets are non-transferable and there is no cash alternative.
  • There will be no contribution towards travel.
  • Tickets are valid for the date/time/venue specified only and cannot be used on an alternative date or time, or at a different venue.
  • Entry is open to UK residents aged 18 years or older.
  • Competition closes on 20th October 2017 at 12 noon. Winner shall be drawn at random on the same day and contacted via email.
  • Due to the time restrictive nature of the prize, the winner shall have 48 hours to reply to the email to confirm their acceptance of the prize, before another winner from the remaining eligible entrants is drawn.
  • No bulk or third party entries.
  • The winners details shall be shared with the promoter, for the purpose of prize fulfilment.
Disclaimer: This post contains an affiliate link.

Tuesday, 21 February 2017

Our Visit to the Legoland Discovery Centre Manchester

With the Christmas holidays now being a distant memory, we have been counting down the days to February half term so that we could spend some quality time together as a family. My husband works in a school in England, and our children attend a school in Wales and so a lot of the holidays unfortunately don't match up this year, so we have been really looking forward to getting out and about and finding some fun new things to do!

Despite only living 45 minutes away from Manchester, somehow we have never got round to visiting the Legoland Discovery Centre. We frequent the Trafford Centre quite regularly and have often seen it advertised but for some reason we have never quite made it through the doors to experience what it has to offer. I was therefore really excited to be invited along on Monday as a family to discover what it was all about, and my youngest son Riley was absolutely ecstatic to discover that someone else very special would be there that day too - Lego Batman!

We began our journey at 9am on the Monday morning, stopping for a cooked breakfast at a restaurant on the way. I often do this when heading out for the day, as it keeps the kids full and prevents those recurring questions and comments of "I'm hungry" and "When are we going to get something to eat?"echoing through my ears every few minutes as they take it in turn one by one to ask the same questions throughout the morning. We therefore arrived at The Trafford Centre at around 10:40am and parked in the Barton Square car park which is the nearest car park to both the Legoland Discovery Centre and Sea Life.


Riley became really excited as we made our way from the car park to the attraction, with him noticing a huge window display on the outside of the building. We knew that it would be a popular place however we were shocked to see the size of the queue when we first arrived. Therefore if you are not a fan of queues then I would recommend either getting there just before opening time so you are near the front, or making your way there later in the afternoon. You can also pre book your tickets online if you want to be sure of securing a specific time slot for entry. One piece of advice I would give is wrap up warm and take a brolly, as the queue is outside so it may get a little cold or wet.


Once inside my children declared that they were in Lego Paradise. We have visited Legoland Windsor before and knew that this would not be on the same scale, but my children were in their element right from the very beginning.

On entry to the attraction we were asked to sit down whilst a photographer took our picture against a green screen. We always have these photos done at attractions, sometimes I buy them and sometimes I don't, but I always have the photo taken just on the off chance that they somehow manage to capture a beautiful family photo where all three children are smiling and facing the camera at the same time, as believe me this is quite a challenge! We were asked to smile and pose in several ways so that the picture would fit the image that was later applied to the background. After our picture had been taken, we were given a ticket so that we could view our photograph at the end.

We then made our way up in the lift which took us to the entrance of the factory tour, where we were introduced to the Professor. He provided us with a short interactive demonstration of how lego bricks are created and invited the children to get involved in the process. There was lots of jumping and button pushing to get the machinery going and the children were rewarded for their help with an individual brick each.




As we then entered the main attraction area, we came across our first ride which was the Kingdom Quest Laser Ride. We were all able to fit in the one car which was great as we are so used to having to split up into separate seats on these kinds of rides so it was nice to be able to enjoy it all together and compete against one another in getting the highest score. We all really enjoyed this ride and there was no queue at all, we simply walked straight on, and were made to feel really welcome by the lovely gentleman running the ride. Riley who is 4 was able to hold his laser shooter with ease and was happy that it went at a gentle speed so he wasn't scared at all.

After the Kingdom Quest Laser Ride we carried on our adventure into Miniland, that featured a whole host of recognisable landmarks and structures all made out of Lego. I loved the Blackpool Tower display especially when the main lights dimmed and the tower then all lit up, it looked spectacular. There was even a mini Coronation Street!



Although I could have spent a fair amount of time wandering around the Miniworld area, the kids were keen to try out some more of the rides and so the next stop was the Lego City Forest Pursuit Ride where children can drive around in Lego police cars. Children need to be a minimum of 4 years of age to ride on this, and my son was so happy to be both old and tall enough to go for a drive. Unfortunately he wasn't the best at steering, but one of the staff members helped him round and made sure he had no bumps.


The vehicles are a great little design and look just like the Lego police cars you can build in the Lego City sets. They are operated by a one pedal system so it is easy for children to understand how to use it, and they simply need to keep their foot on the pedal whilst driving and steering around the course.


 The course is in a simple oval shape so there is nothing too complicated to try and manoeuvre around, and they are speed limited so there is no need to worry about anyone going too fast.


Next to the Lego City Forest Pursuit area was the Lego Racers Build and Test Area where this fabulous racing car was also located. The racing car looks fantastic and is big enough for children to sit in to pose for a picture, or pretend that they are speeding round a race track. The build and test area allows you to use your imagination to build a racing car creation that you can race down the speed test track.



After the fun and excitement of the Kingdom Quest Laser Ride, and the Lego City Forest Pursuit, Riley decided he wanted to rest and sit in one of the many lego pits that were full to the brim of lego to build and you could make anything you could think of. I genuinely believe that Riley could have sat here for hours, and he began to make a house on one of the built in boards around the edge.



Next up was the Merlin's Apprentice Ride. On this you have to pedal fast as you go round and round, which helps to raise your vehicle to the skies, so that you can help Merlin with his magic. Riley loves rides that go up and down, especially as he knows that I am not a big fan of heights, and so he often finds this hilarious. Emma and Ben also equally enjoyed this ride though, and thought that having to pedal was a fun feature.




After we had been on Merlin's Apprentice ride, it was the moment that Riley had been excitedly waiting for. It was time to meet..........Lego Batman!


Riley absolutely loves Lego Batman at the moment, and has been collecting the mini figures in the blind bags with his pocket money. He waited patiently in the short queue and when the moment arrived he ran straight to Lego Batman and gave him a huge hug. That moment alone literally made my day, as he was just so so happy. All my children then posed for a picture which we were able to take ourselves and Riley then gave Lego Batman a further big cuddle before heading back to play with the Lego again. 


The costume was fantastic, and Riley is now insistent on me either buying or creating the very same costume for him to wear to school!

After another play in the Lego we visited the 4D cinema and watched a great short film that followed Emmet, Wyldstyle, Unikitty, Metalbeard and Benny on an adventure in a strange theme park that is actually part of an evil secret plot. The 4D film features some great effects, however we had squeezed into the last 5 seats that were together on the back row, and so we didn't feel the full effects of some of these. If you want to get the full effect then I would recommend sitting in the first couple of rows, however you get a good 4D view from wherever you are sat, and my children were more than happy with this. I kept watching Riley trying to reach out for objects that came out of the screen, and when asked what he thought of it after the show, he described it as being magic!


The 4D films run regularly throughout the day, so if you miss one showing, don't worry, just enjoy one of the many other activities and keep an eye on the countdown board which will tell you when the next show starts.

After the show, Riley had become thirsty and so I purchased a Capri Sun juice drink from the cafe for him which cost £1.40. There was also a range of sandwiches, snacks, fruit and cakes available if you were feeling hungry, and there was a meal deal available for £5. Even though I was only purchasing a drink, the lady on the till was so friendly and took the time to ask my son whether he had enjoyed his day so far, and asked what is favourite part had been. It is so easy to take the time to be friendly and polite to customers, but it is something that many people forget to do, but not in the Legoland Discovery Centre! Every single member of staff we spoke to came across as really friendly and enthusiastic, and I think that this always helps to improve the experience for guests. At one point I asked a staff member for directions to the toilets, and rather than just tell me, she said "Come with me, I will show you the way". Again this may seem like a little thing, but I appreciate the fact that she took the time to help out.

At present, some of the attractions are currently closed, but if you visit during this time then you will receive a ticket to return once the work has been completed which seems very reasonable as there is still plenty to do in my opinion. The area where work is taking place is all boarded off, and pictures have been placed up on the boards to try and divert you from the fact that work is taking place. The pictures are really cool and based on the Lego Batman characters which look like they have been spray painted onto the wall. 


After nearly two and half hours here, we decided to make our way out, stopping by Miniland again on the way to take a look at some of the amazing creations once more. Whilst leaving we came across a fun spy activity where you had to try and pass through laser beams, Riley was a pro at this, as he was able to pretty much fit under the lowest one and so simply crawled under on his belly. This made him feel like he was capable of being Batman's sidekick and was really pleased to have managed the task! 

There was also a fantastic batman themed mural board where you could add lego to the design. This looked fabulous, and I wish I could get something like this for Riley's bedroom.


Like most attractions nowadays, the exit is via the shop, which has a huge range of lego available to purchase. I always set my children a limit before we visit anywhere, so that they know exactly how much to spend and saves any awkward demands for money at the end of a trip. They each purchased a small memento, and Riley also bought a Lego Batman minifigure blind bag to add to his ever expanding collection.

Overall we had an absolutely fantastic morning at the Legoland Discovery Centre in Manchester, and seeing Riley's face when he met Lego Batman was amazing, and has definitely created a lovely family memory for us. In total we were in the attraction for nearly 3 hours, however had we not been limited on time that day, we could have quite happily stayed another couple of hours. I feel that the staff are a credit to the attraction, and were more than happy to help customers and always with a smile. The facilities were all clean and tidy, and I regularly saw staff walking round checking all the lego building areas and tidying up any bricks that had fallen on the floor. We visited the Legoland Discovery Centre, not quite sure what to expect, and came away with some fantastic family memories. We can't wait to return when the other attractions reopen, and I would definitely recommend to others.

Tickets are available online here and cost £15 for an adult entry, and £11 for a child aged 3-17. Under 3's are admitted free of charge. Adults are not permitted to enter the attraction without being accompanied by a child under the age of 17, however the attraction does run Adult only evenings on certain dates to cater for their older Lego loving guests too. Tickets are also available on arrival at the attraction, however these cost slightly more than the online saver rate, and are subject to availability.

For extra value, you can also buy combination tickets which combine your trip to the Legoland Discovery Centre with a trip to Sea Life Manchester, so you can enjoy both attractions on the same day. However should you run out of time the Sea Life entry is valid for 90 days from the date of purchase meaning you can come back at a more convenient time if need be. These tickets cost £25 for an adult and £16 for a child aged 3-17. Under 3's are admitted free of charge.

If you would like to learn more about the Legoland Discovery Centre then please visit their website which can be found here: Legoland Discovery Centre Manchester


Disclaimer: We were provided with a complimentary family admission for the purpose of providing an honest review of our experience. We hope to return when the refurbishments have taken place and will update the blog post accordingly with the other available attractions at the point. All opinions and photos are my own. Any entry prices, opening times, or attractions stated are correct at time of writing.