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Hollowford 2017 Day 1

The long, long bus journey (made e-v-e-n l-o-n-g-e-r with endless roadworks and an accident on the A14) was all suddenly worth it when we came over the hill and into the Hope valley. The children thought it was beautiful, and were fascinated to see houses perched half-way up hills. “Is that the one we’re climbing?” replaced “How much longer?” for the last hour of the trip and, to cap it all, the sun came out.

We were warmly welcomed by the staff at Hollowford and given a short lesson on how to put a duvet cover onto a duvet.  Some children – Elisabeth and Declan step forward – are very good at making their own beds. Others will not be shamed here. A short amount of time was given for the girls to carefully arrange their things on the shelves in their rooms and for the boys to scatter their belongings liberally all over their room, then we ate, and set off for a walk.

We headed up to Odin’s Mine, through fields of sheep that Edward helpfully named for us; he seems to be able to speak their language fairly fluently. The walk was lovely with spectacular views and Fressingfield led the way. Katie – as our resident photo-journalist – snapped almost every blade of grass, black slug and stream we stepped over. Christopher, Kian and Nathy all walked really well, although that might be because Bella offered to carry all their bags for them! The sound of sheep baaing, cows mooing and the wind gently rustling the ferns was all perfectly complemented by the guinea-pig-like squeaking of Phoebe’s new laugh.

When we got back – at about 8-ish – we set up a game of football and a game of rounders. The rounders game ended with a spectacular, very tense, extra-time draw thanks to Jess A’s two incredible home runs. Then it was time for showers and bed.

All went off very well with no issues at all. Most children have chosen to keep the lights in the bathrooms left on and their teddies are all snuggled in with them.

Tomorrow they find out their day groups and the activities start – rocks, high-ropes, caving, zip-wire and rafting.

We can’t wait!