“ Address: Little London / Longhope / Gloucestershire / GL17 0PH „
Such a dreadful first impression, we didn't even bother going inside! It was deserted, run down, and the poor owls in cages at the entrance were sitting in piles of filth. The smell alone was enough to send us running. Not cheap, at £20 for a family. In addition, the big signs at the front desk warning us about e.coli did nothing to reassure us.
The inside play barn was good for under 5's as that was the age limit of all of the soft play although older kids would like the slides. But be warned, if you break any equipment there's a sign saying you have to pay!! Thought that was what insurance was for!!
We waited 1 hour for a small portion of chips which came with dead fly attached. Complained and after another half an hour they bought out more chips but the kids were hungry and ate the original chips! Had to clear table myself and clean it with wet wipes, staff seemed moody and unhelpful.
There are just 2 ladies toilets one of which the door wouldn't shut, it was small, cramped and dirty with the only means to drying your hands a towel hanging in the bin. Overall the restaurant was very disappointing and unable to cope with any food orders, very dirty and not up the facilities.
The pets corner was small, cramped and very dirty and smelly, kids didn't like it as the smell of urine was so strong. The petting corner was an open shed and the reptile house was again, small, cramped and very dirty. The overall feel of the place was that it was very dirty and smelly. I know it's a farm but if you're gonna charge people to view animals you should at least keep the place a bit clean. There were few information points about the animals and we had to guess what some of them were. There's a nice castle in a sandpit which the kids enjoyed but the go karts were a bit disappointing. There was no member of staff overseeing older kids going the wrong way round the track or crashing into others or breaking the go karts. I wouldn't go back to Dick Whittington Farm Park nor would i recommend it to anyone. It's a waste of your hard earned cash as there are other similar farm parks that are much more organised, clean and friendly.
The Dick Whittington Farm Park is a wonderful award winning childrens activity centre and a working farm, nestled in the beautiful Gloucestershire countryside of Little London, Longhope. Conveniently situated just off the A4136 it isn't too far off the beaten track, but just enough to wallow in the tranquil 100 acre setting . But don't get too relaxed, this is a childrens activity park remember!
We are lucky enough to live close to the farm park and visit it regularly, especially throughout the drier months when you can really take advantage of all that is on offer. This isn't to say there is nothing to do in the winter months, far from it, the Dick Whittington manages to offer fun and interesting activities all year round, Father Christmas & his Grotto, twilight lantern walks and easter egg hunts to name a few.
*** Playbarn ***
The playbarn is a huge, indoor, flat open space which contains the soft play equipment. One section is conveniently sectioned off by big, movable padded bricks for the babies and has padded shapes, little tykes houses and small slides. There are a few plastic chairs and tables at this end from where you have a good view over the rest of the playbarn. Next to this is a small jungle gym with rope nets and a padded slide into a small ball pit, which is ideal for younger toddlers. On the oppsite side on the barn is a much larger jungle gym spread over three levels and includes crawl through pipes,cargo nets, trampolines, tube slide, wavy slides, a slide into a ball pit and other items I don't know the names for! There is another section which houses two wavy slides and a huge ball pit. Last year the barn was extended and the new extension houses a set of three very long wavy slides (for which you need to use the straw sacks and also a drop slide which is not recommended for children under six. These slides are supervised by a member of staff who will prevent younger children from trying the drop slide. However, our son is only four and we tend to help him with the wavy slides, to make sure he can manage both his sack and to get on the slide. The area these slides are housed in still has more space for equipment and at present have some old tables and chairs which is useful if you've brought your own packed lunch.
*** Outside ***
You will more than likely see the entrance to the farm area before you make your way to the reception, although a sign politely asks you to visit reception (and pay) first! There are also some small 'sheds' to the left of this sign, these house the aquarium, reptiles and small 'pet' zone. The farm animal areas are usually clearly signed with what animals they are holding. On our last visit we saw deer, donkeys, llama, pony's a variety of different pigs, goats, peacocks and too many other types of birds to remember! The spring is a lovely time to visit and see all the baby animals. Just past the animals and making your way around to the front is a large sand pit, complete with buckets, spades and digger arms and then onto a large tarmac go-cart track, sectioned off by hay bales. It's in a figure of eight and I think they are either planning to enlarge it or to create a second area. For those who like to walk (it's not too far for the kids) there is a trail to follow, with signs pointing out different plants & trees. All around are large open spaces and some picnic tables in places, perfect for summer days!
*** Reception & Restaurant ***
This is your first point of call, and obviously where you pay! From here you can see an amazing array of toys and sweets to tempt your kids (and some adults). This is also where the Cats Whiskers restaurant is situated, which has plenty of seating and loads of cakes (some handmade) to beckon you in. There are a few coolers in here, with ice creams, soft drinks and sandwiches on display. They also offer crisps, chocolate and fruit on the counter and usually have a selection of organic alternatives. We usually pack our own lunch and have very rarely eaten from the menu so I am unable to comment on the quality of the food. Although, from what I remember, the menu offers hot drinks, soups, sandwiches, paninis, salads and chips among other things.
*** Prices ***
Under 3 £4.00
Age 3-10 £5.00
Over 10 £4.50
Babies - free!
Children under 14 need to be accompanied by an adult
The maximum height for indoor play equipment is 1.45 meters
There is an extra charge for the Tractor ride - £1 per seat
*** Membership ***
Membership is £20 per calendar year and entitles you to 10% off admission on the weekend & school holidays (up to 6 people) and 50% Tuesday - Friday. Happy Mondays club entitles cardholders to up to two free adult entries and children cost £4 regardless of age (except for babies who are still free)
All members recieve a useful newsletter which gives details of forthcoming events and activities.
*** Opening times ***
Monday - Sunday
10am - 5pm
Last admissions 4pm
We have been visiting for nearly four years and things have changed in this time, it has been a bit of a gradual work in progress and the faclities have improved year after year. Last year saw the car parking re-vamped, an extension to the indoor play area and the restaurant tidied up and taken over. Through out this they have always managed to keep up the standards and give a very friendly and welcoming atmosphere. This is a place where you can spend a whole day and I think that represents excellent value.
For more info visit www.dickwhittington.info.co.uk or call 01452 831000