HAPPY HOLIDAYS! 2015 Summer Holiday Clubs, Courses and Programmes for Kids in and Near Lewes, East Sussex

charleston summer 2014 young bohemians. craft. making chickens. photo. p.fewster. small-4
Charleston’s Young Bohemians Summer School 2014. Image copyright Penelope Fewster


Welcome to my second massive summer school holiday activities post
(it’s taken me two years to get over doing the last one!). I hope you’ll find it as useful as I know I will.

There’s some cracking stuff for our kids to do this summer but I’m sure there is more out there. If you’re going to be running a club that’s not listed here and would like to be trecluded, it’s easy to add you and it’s not too late – this post will be live until the end of August after all – so just send me an email through the Contact page and we can sort you out.

Parents of school-age children, I know the clubs who have decided to be part of this post would be really grateful if it was shared – through class email lists, Facebook and Twitter. Go forth and spread it around!

It’s a month and a half away, and we’ve only just closed half term, but isn’t it nice to be thinking about the summer hols! Happy reading/planning!

Kate x

ps. If you’re new to Little Lewes, by all means come along for the ride. You can enter your email address and hit subscribe over there in the side bar, or way down the bottom if on mobile, if you like. You’ll receive little nudges whenever I publish anything.

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‘Red Pepper’ by Jess B, age 9, created in oils at Dairy Studio

SOME NOTES ON HOW TO USE THIS POST

This time, I have changed things slightly, so here are some things to note:

  • Clubs are listed by activity type to make what you’re interested in easier to find. These are listed in alphabetical order.
  • The places providing those types of activities are also in alphabetical order. This was the simplest and fairest way I could think of to order the content.
  • Also, each club’s name and image link directly to their sites to make it easy to click through to them.
  • All the information is provided by the clubs/organisations/people themselves. None of the write-ups constitute a review from Little Lewes. Please see my disclosure section at the bottom of the post to read what I won’t be held responsible for!
  • Finally, some clubs are also offering a DISCOUNT if you quote a certain code – those will be pointed out in turquoise as you scroll through the listings.

ART/CREATIVITY/MUSIC/FILM

ARTROOM BRIGHTON

Description: Artroom Brighton is the leading provider in the South East of extra-curricular art classes for children and young people. It teaches art to children aged between 6 and 16 and firmly believes that every pupil who comes through the studio door is capable of exceeding their own artistic expectations. Artroom will be offering daily workshops through the holidays, each with a different theme – from Minecraft mosaics to Picasso portraits to ‘Adventure Time’ cartoons.

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Dates: 6 July, 10 July, then weekdays from Mon 20 July-Fri 21 Aug.
Time: 9am-3pm
Cost: £33 per day (10% sibling discount available)
Age: 6-13
Address: 41-43 Portland Road, Hove, BN3 5DG (the Sackville Rd end of Portland Rd, next to the COPY CENTRE – housed within West Werks)
Web: artroombrighton.co.uk
Email: courses@artroombrighton.co.uk
Phone: 01273 240 308 / 07727 882 824
Contact name: Sebastian Dewing
Notes: A packed lunch and water should be provided by parents – no nuts thanks! Kids should wear clothes they can get messy in as we use acrylic paints.

CHARLESTON ANIMATION SUMMER SCHOOL 

Description: A great hands-on introduction to stop-frame animation for young people, covering every stage of the filmmaking process, from planning to completion. Participants will script and storyboard an original, short animated film and work in small groups to produce animated sequences. They will be shown how to edit and add sound, create title sequences and export their finished films, all ending in an exclusive world premier for friends and families in the Charleston Barns.

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Image copyright Penelope Fewster

Dates + Times: 27-29 Jul, 10am-4pm
Cost: £175 (£150 to Friends of Charleston)
Discount: 10% when booking with code ‘Little Lewes’
Age: 12-16
Address: Charleston, Firle, Lewes, BN8 6LL
Web: charleston.org.uk
Email: m.perkins@charleston.org.uk
Phone: 01323 811 626
Contact name: Melissa Perkins
Notes: Please wear comfortable old clothes that are fine to be splattered with paint or mud or grass stains! Dress for the weather, rain or shine. Please bring sunscreen if sunny and a warmer jumper just in case. Charleston will provide healthy snacks, but please bring a packed lunch.

DAIRY STUDIO ART COURSES

Description: A fun opportunity for arty kids to experiment with a range of different materials, have fun and make some exciting creations to take home. There’s oil painting, animal sculptures, batik wall hanging and felt making.

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Dates, Times and Costs: Oil Painting: Wed 5 Aug, 9-11.30am, £18.50; Animal Sculptures: Tue 11 Aug, 9am-12 noon + Wed 12 Aug, 9-11am, £35; Oil Painting: Wed 19, 9-11.30am, £18.50; Batik Wall Hanging: Tue 25 Aug, 9am-12 noon + Wed 26 Aug, 9-11am, £35; Felt making: Wed 2 Sept, 9-11am, £15
Age: 8-11
Address: Old Malling Farm, Lewes, BN7 2DY
Web: dairystudio-artcourses.co.uk
Email: susiemonn@gmail.com
Phone: 07709 556 420
Contact names: Susie Monnington
Notes: The animal sculpture and batik wall hanging courses are over two days to allow for drying time between processes. Please bring a snack and wear clothes that can get messy.

MOHAMED HAMID AT THE STAR POTTERY

Description: During a three-hour session or full day, children explore and make with stoneware clay. They’re invited to make sculpture, throw on a wheel, slab build and coil to make a selection of objects, have fun and make new friends – all while learning from an expert master potter and extremely talented local fine artist.

close up of child pottting priory fayre 2012

Dates: 27-31 Jul
Time: Two sessions: 10am-3pm and 2pm-5pm. Full days can be booked
Cost: £36 per half-day; £72 for the full day (including materials and firing costs)
Age: 7-16
Address: Star Pottery, Star Brewery, Lewes
Web: hamid-pottery.co.uk
Email: info@hamid-pottery.co.uk
Phone: 01273 483 295 / 07843 287 187
Contact names: Mohamed Hamid, Elizabeth Jardine, Rosie Lewis
Notes: Star Pottery can take a maximum of six children at a session. Pleasure wear ‘grub-happy clothes’. Snacks are provided, but if your kids stay a whole day they’ll need to bring a packed lunch. Lunch is supervised.

POPSICLE WORKSHOPS

Description: Short making workshops for groups of four to six children, hosted by neon-loving Sharon at her colour-happy shop in Lewes’s The Needlemakers (get a flavour here, though bear in mind it has now moved upstairs to a bigger space). There’s ‘Kids Vinyl T-Shirt Printing‘, where kids create a t-shirt using brilliant neon and metallic vinyl; ‘Festival Headbands‘, where kids create a unique headband out of wool pompons and fake flowers – very Frieda Kahlo – and ‘Print Your Own Tote Bag‘, where designs are created in vinyl in neons. This last one’s a great one for teens – black is available!

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Dates: Any day, Mon-Fri, all summer long – bar possibly a couple of weeks (please call Sharon for dates as soon as you know yours or check back here for updates). See ‘Notes’ below regarding booking and notice
Time: 10-11am or 4-5pm
Cost: £15 per child
Age: 6+
Location: The Needlemakers, West Street, Lewes, BN7 2NZ
Web: popsicleonline.com
Email: sharon@popsicleonline.com
Phone: 01273 911 314
Contact name: Sharon Makgill
Notes: Groups must be of at least four kids to go ahead – maximum is six – and need to be booked in advance. You can leave it to just five working days ahead of when you’d like them to do it and Sharon only needs this time frame to order in materials.

RICHIE’S TALKING BOOK WORKSHOP

Description: Three-hour sessions for groups of three or four children in which they create their own unique talking book in Richie’s studio in the heart of Lewes. From recording the story to creating music and sound effects, right down to drawing the album cover artwork, kids use musical instruments, sound effects, voice manipulation, and plenty of creative imagining. Bring your favourite picture book – or write your own beforehand (but remember to keep it short!). Children will be presented with their finished edit the following day by email – or they can bring a memory stick on the day and come and pick it up next day. Richie’s aim is to present each child with a full collection of all the audio books created in these sessions at the end of the summer.

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Check out the ‘Tiger Who Came to Tea’ below by Richie’s daughter Elsie, as an example of a Talking Book!

Dates: Wed, Thu and Fri, weeks starting 10 and 17 Aug
Time: 9.30am-12.30pm or 1.30-4.30pm
Cost: £25 per child
Age: 6-10
Location: 1 Walwers Lane, Lewes, BN7 2JX
Web: n/a
Email: richiecrago@gmail.com
Phone: 07774 990 013
Contact name: Richie Crago
Notes: Bring snacks, drinks and any sound effects you think you might want to use that you can make with items from home. If you would rather your child’s audio book not be included in the compilation, please let Richie know.

THE SEAMSTRESS

Description: One of the Lewes’s eclectic, creative and wonderful independent shops, The Seamstress is based at The Needlemakers and this summer owner Diana Uprichard will be running two weeks of sewing school. The first (which includes ‘Make a Toy‘ and ‘Make PJ Bottoms or a Skirt‘ will cover basic hand sewing and embroidery skills using a paper pattern and cutting out, and during the week, children move on to using a sewing machine. For week two older kids can ‘Make a Dress’, which includes using a paper pattern, dress design, cutting out, fitting a garment, and covers confident use of a sewing machine and sewing techniques such as darts, gathering, hemming and putting in a zip and pockets. The final result is a gorgeous, well fitted garment in fabric of your choice.

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Dates, Times, Cost and Ages: Make a Toy: 3 + 4 Aug, 10am-1pm, £40, 8-12 yrs; Make PJ Bottoms or a Skirt: 5-7 Aug, 10am-1pm, £60, 8-12 yrs; Make a Dress: 10-13 Aug, 10am-4pm, £160, 12-18 yrs
Discount: 10% when booking with code ‘Little Lewes’
Location: Downstairs at The Needlemakers, West Street, Lewes, BN7 2NZ
Web: theseamstresslewes.com
Email: dianauprichard@yahoo.co.uk
Phone: 07999 576 215
Contact name: Diana Uprichard
Notes: Bring snacks and drinks and for full days, a packed lunch. Fabrics and sewing equipment are included.

You could also try:
Arthropod Arts
Lindfield Art Studio
Maia Eden Art Courses

CHURCHES + GROUPS

CHRIST CHURCH

Description: This year’s theme is ‘Space Academy’ and children are grouped according to age for crafts, games, drama and music. On the Saturday morning there’s a free BBQ for friends and family during which the children show everyone what they’ve been doing during the holiday club.

Picture for Little Lewes

Dates: 29-31 Jul
Time: 10am-12.30pm
Cost: £9 per child; £3 per subsequent child for the whole three days
Age: 5-11 (those in reception class now, up to Year 6)
Location: Christ Church Lewes, Prince Edwards Road, BN7 1BL
Web: christ-church-lewes.org
Email: christchurchactivities@btconnect.com
Phone: 07973 560 057
Contact name: Jane Armstrong
Notes: There’s room for 40 children and the club is always very popular. Please email for a registration form and further details.

SOUTHOVER CHURCH 

Description: Southover Church, which is now part of Trinity, runs truly renowned holiday clubs. Each year is themed – last year was ‘The Secret of Skull Island’ – and this year it’s ‘The Outlaws of Tanglethorn Forest’. Four days of games, drama, craft, music and fun as the kids are taken on an adventure into the world of Robin Hood and his trusty followers!

robin hood pic

Dates: 28-31 Jul
Time: 9.30am-1.15pm
Cost: £12 per child; £30 for three or more children living at the same address
Age: 5-11 (those in reception class now, up to Year 6)
Location: Southover Church, Church End, 1 Cockshut Road, Lewes, BN7 1JH
Web: southover.org.ukoutlaws2015.eventbrite.com (to book)
Email: trinityholidayclub@hotmail.com
Phone: 01273 470 616
Contact name: Neil Chisnall and Diane Hamilton
Notes: There’s space for 100 children and the club is always very popular. Places are on a first come, first served basis and need to be booked at the site or email above.

LEWES YMCA

Description: The Lewes YMCA holiday programme is packed with fun, creative, sporty and educational activities – inside and out, in the spacious buildings and gardens they have. Expect baking, make-believe, dancing, singing, dirt-digging, construction, junk-modelling, circus skills, trampolining, gardening, dam-building and den-making, as well as quiet play, reading and relaxing.

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Dates: 23 Jul-2 Sep inclusive
Time: Breakfast: 8.30-9.30am; morning, 9.30am-12 noon; lunch (packed) 12.30-1.30pm; afternoon, 1.30-4.30pm; tea 4.30-5.30pm
Cost: Breakfast, £4; Morning, £10; Lunch, £4 (£2 if staying all day); Afternoon, £10; Tea, £4 
Age: 3-11 
Location: YMCA, Westgate St, Lewes, BN7 1YR
Web: lewesymca.org.uk
Email: lewes@ymcadlg.co.uk
Phone: 01273 474 599
Contact name: Frances Ainley, Fay Wilshaw, Cavell Reynolds
Notes: Payment is required at the time of booking and all bookings are non-transferable. There is flexibility of hours to suit family budgets, please call to talk this through. Children should bring their own packed lunches (breakfast and tea are provided in those time slots) and play can be messy so please bring a spare set of clothes. Suncream and hats are also essential.

PERFORMANCE

ART OF DANCE

Description: Art of Dance have been running their popular summer school for several years. Children don’t need to have a dance background, but a keen interest in dance and performing is expected. The week is spent learning several dance styles and creating a show, which is performed to parents on the final afternoon and followed by a tea party.

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Dates + Times: 3-7 August inclusive, 10am-4pm
Cost: £160
Age: Two age groups: 4-7 and 7+. (Seven-year-olds can choose which group they’d like to be in)
Address: Lewes New School, Talbot Terrace, BN7 2DS
Web: artofdance.co.uk
Email: michelle@artofdance.co.uk
Phone: 07976 068 989
Contact name: Michelle Wilson
Notes: This club isn’t just for girls, although most of the children tend to be female because Art of Dance began as a ballet school. Children should come with a packed lunch.

CHARLESTON YOUNG BOHEMIANS: A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM SUMMER ART CAMP

Description: Years ago, performances of ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ were held at Charleston on the bank of the pond. All week for this camp, the Young Bohemians will create their own production of this enchanting comedy. The children will make their own set, props and costumes, learn their parts and even get a chance to direct themselves. All this will culminate in a magical end-of-week performance for families and friends in the Orchard.

charleston summer 2014 young bohemians. craft. making chickens. photo. p.fewster. small-2
Image copyright Penelope Fewster

Dates + Times: 17-21 Aug, 10am-4pm
Cost: £200
Discount: 10% when booking with code ‘Little Lewes
Age: 8-14
Address: Charleston, Firle, Lewes, BN8 6LL
Web: charleston.org.uk
Email: m.perkins@charleston.org.uk
Phone: 01323 811 626
Contact name: Melissa Perkins
Notes: Please wear comfortable old clothes that are fine to be splattered with paint or mud or grass stains! Dress for the weather, rain or shine. Please bring sunscreen if sunny and a warmer jumper just in case. Charleston will provide healthy snacks, but please bring a packed lunch.

INTREPID SUMMER SCHOOL

Description: Intrepid has been running activities for children for 17 years, and with its summer school, leads kids on a magical, imagination-lead journey to create a play in three days. Each day begins with fun drama games before the club’s chosen story is explored. After lunch there’s craft, and kids make the set. The day finishes with games, quizzes and treasure hunts.

FreyaDates: 28-30 Jul, Ocklyne Junior School, Eastbourne; 4-8 Aug, Southover Church Hall, Lewes; 18-20 Aug, Lewes New School, Lewes
Time: 9.30am-3.30pm (standard day); extra hours added for an hourly charge: breakfast club 8.30-9.30am; teatime session 3.30-4.30pm)
Cost: £89 per child, £79 for siblings or two or more friends/cousins booking together; extra hours £5 per child per hour or £8 if booking two hours
Discount: £79 for all children booked with code ‘Little Lewes’
Age: 5-11 (those in reception class now, up to Year 6)
Location: Various – see ‘Dates’ above
Web: intrepidtheatre.org.uk
Email: office@intrepidinspires.co.uk
Phone: 07840 166 947
Contact name: Richard Hawley
Notes: Children should bring lunch, snacks and plenty of drinks, plus a sun hat and sun screen. Wear comfortable clothing. At booking a £30 non-refundable deposit it required with the balance due a week before the summer school starts. 

INTREPID YOUTH THEATRE SUMMER SCHOOL

Description: Intrepid’s three-day youth summer school offers participants creative freedom to devise a play and stage it for friends and family. It’s for younger teens who love acting, directing, writing, devising and improvising.

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Dates: 11-13 Aug
Time: 10am-4pm
Cost: £79 per child
Discount: £69 for all children booked with code ‘Little Lewes’
Age: 11-14
Location: Southover Church Hall
Web: intrepidtheatre.org.uk
Email: office@intrepidinspires.co.uk
Phone: 07840 166 947
Contact name: Richard Hawley
Notes: Children should bring lunch, snacks and plenty of drinks, plus a sun screen. Wear comfortable clothing. At booking a £30 non-refundable deposit it required with the balance due a week before the summer school starts. 

KALEIDOSCOPE THEATRE COMPANY

Description: Kaleidoscope is partnered with Priory School and has been running its popular summer school in Lewes for 12 years. Children are given the opportunity to work with theatre professionals to create ‘a play in a week’. This summer, the play will be based on Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book’. The aim is for participants to work together during the creative process and put on a production whilst learning new skills and boosting their confidence. Everyone delivers a spectacular show with costumes, scenery and stage lighting, for parents, siblings and friends on the Friday. A truly theatrical experience!

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Dates: 27-31 July
Time: 10am-4pm
Cost: Early bird (book before 17 June): one child: £160; second/third siblings: £135; Kaleidoscope members: £140 (siblings £125); Priory pupils and Y6 kids going to Priory in Sep: £140; Low income/income support: £125. Standard (after 17 June): one child: £180; second/third siblings: £155; Kaleidoscope members: £160 (siblings £135); Priory pupils and Y6 kids going to Priory in Sep: £150; Low income/income support: £135
Discount: 10% when booking with code ‘Little Lewes’
Age range: 5-17 (five-year-olds must be in reception currently)
Location: Priory School, Lewes
Web: kaleidoscopetheatre.org.uk
Email: info@kaleidoscopetheatre.org.uk
Phone: 01273 473 554
Contact name: Deidre Daly
Notes: Booking is essential as the summer school normally gets fully booked each year. Children will need to wear lose comfortable clothing and bring a packed lunch, suncream and sun hat. Snacks of biscuits and squash are offered.

You could also try: 
Lewes Little Theatre Youth Group
Zylo Performance

NATURE/OUTDOORS

CIRCLE OF LIFE REDISCOVERY

Description: Circle of Life Rediscovery provides nature-based experiences in East Sussex for families, schools, adults and children that are educational, fun and life-changing! These include inspiring activity days for schools or family days in the woodlands, unique residential camps and forest schools.

Residential Camps for 11-13 and 14-17 year olds, two Woodland Days for children aged 7-11 and 11-14 and a Family Day, suitable for adults and children of all ages! Activities include building shelters, bush craft skills, woodland cooking, fire making, tracking and above all, having fun! The Camps and Woodland Days are all facilitated by the authors of ‘Learning with Nature’ and a team of experienced outdoor specialists.

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Dates: Jumping Mouse Residential Camp, 25-27 Jul, ages 11-13; Call to the Wild Residential Camp, 29 Jul-1 Aug, ages 14-17-year; Woodland Day, 3 Aug, ages 7-11; Woodland Day, 4 Aug, ages 11-14; Family Day, 5 Aug
Time: 10am-3.30pm. Please see separate timings for Residential Camps
Cost: from £20
Age: 11-17
Location: Various, East Sussex
Web: circleofliferediscovery.com
Email: bookings@circleofliferediscovery.com
Phone: 01273 814226
Contact name: Marina Robb

THE MOHAIR CENTRE

Description: At the time of posting, this Ofsted-registered holiday club on a working farm (which also houses a nursery and after school club) hadn’t decided exactly what will happen in each week of the holidays, but as in past summers each week will be themed. There’s definitely ‘Pony and Fishing Week‘; ‘Small Animal Week‘, including a pet show, learning how to groom and small pet care – all with the farm’s own guinea pigs and rabbits; and ‘Camping Week‘, where kids muck in and do everything but sleep there. Watch the website for full details of each week’s theme. For more on the Mohair Centre, see the Little Lewes blog post about it here.

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Dates: 20 Jul-28 Aug
Time: 10.30am-4.30pm (standard day); extra hours added for an hourly charge: breakfast club 8-10.30am, teatime session 4.30-6pm
Cost: £26 per child per day; extra hours £5 per hour
Discount: 10% when booking with code ‘Little Lewes’
Age: 5-11 (those in reception class now, up to Year 6)
Location: Brickfield Farm, Lewes Road, Chiddingly (just through Laughton), BN8 6JG
Web: mohaircentre.co.uk
Email: mohairchildcare@hotmail.co.uk
Phone: 01825 872 457
Contact name: Sandra Rust
Notes: Booking is essential – children who aren’t registered with Mohair won’t be able to attend. Bring a packed lunch (please don’t bring chocolate or sweets), spare change of clothes, wet weather gear, suncream, hats and wellies – and be prepared for your kids to come back grubby and tired! Snacks of biscuits, squash and fruit are offered.

THE OUTDOORS PROJECT

Description: Winner of ‘Best After School Club’ in the What’s On For Juniors Awards in 2014, The Outdoors Project also runs high energy holiday clubs. These all-weather, outdoor clubs take place in locations across Brighton, Hove and West Sussex, in local parks and green spaces, and are perfect for developing friendships, trust, teamwork and confidence. Each day is different and there is loads on offer, from ‘Bushcraft Skills‘ (fire lighting, camp building, tribal survival game and woodland adventure walk), to ‘Mad Science‘ (rocket and volcanoes workshop including alka seltzer rockets, Coke and Mentos, mini volcano villages), to ‘Explore Forest School‘ (trails and tracking – learning to track like a wild animal, search for footprints and poo!).

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Dates: There are four weeks running, each with different themed sessions each day and different locations. The full list is too long to publish here, so check theoutdoorsproject.co.uk/holiday-clubs for full details of what’s on when. Week dates are: Week 1, 28-31 Jul; Week 2, 3-7 Aug; Week 3, 10-14 Aug; Week 4, 17-21 Aug
Time: 10am-2.30pm
Cost: £28 per session
Discount: 10% when booking with code ‘Little Lewes’ before 22 June
Age: 5-12
Location: Hove Park, St Ann’s Wells Garden, Preston Park and High Sport Withdean Complex
Web: theoutdoorsproject.co.uk
Email: info@theoutdoorsproject.co.uk
Phone: 01273 933 781
Contact name: Laura Campbell

Notes: Sessions must be pre-booked and pre-paid. Please bring a packed lunch and refreshments, and ensure that all children wear and bring sunscreen as well as suitable clothing including extra layers.

WILD WOODIES WITH SUSSEX WILDLIFE TRUST

Description: Journeys of discovery with Wild Woodies, lead by the Sussex Wildlife Trust, will teach children to know and appreciate the wildlife that’s right on our doorsteps. The appealingly-named clubs, such as ‘I’m a Survivor‘ (basic bushcraft skills) and ‘Art Attack‘ (discovering the beauty in nature and making things such as mobiles and a giant sculpture) give a good idea of the content of the day. But do check the website for full descriptions! [Ed’s note: scroll down on the SWT site, it looks like a blank page when you arrive, but all the content is at the bottom].

Image ©Elli Mitchelson, Sussex Wildlife Trust
Dates: Various throughout the summer, beginning on 28 Jul, and at the three locations nearest to Lewes – Stanmer Park; Seven Sisters Country Park; and Woods Mill. Check here for all the details and to book
Time: Varies – Stanmer Park sessions tend to be 10.30am-3pm; Seven Sisters tend to be 10am-3pm; and Woods Mill tend to be 9am-4pm but please check the website and individual days to be sure
Cost: Varies – from £17 to £30 (non-members, members are cheaper), but please check the day you’re interested for confirmed pricing
Age: 6-11
Location: Stanmer Park, Lewes Road, Brighton; Seven Sisters Country Park; Woods Mill, Henfield, West Sussex, BN5 9SD
Web: sussexwildlifetrust.org.uk/whats-on/category/holiday-club
Email: swtbookings@sussexwt.org.uk
Phone: 01273 497 561
Notes: Booking is essential. Children need to bring a packed lunch and drink and extra snacks ideally in a rucksack. They should wear suitable outdoor clothing and footwear, as well as sun protection for the weather conditions.

WOWO

Description: Famous Sussex campsite Wowo hosts a large range of outdoor activities from two- or three-hour sessions to full days for kids and families to enjoy. From bushcraft survival skills that include shelter building, fire by friction techniques, whittling and spoon carving, primitive weapons and ‘Bear Grylls’ survival challenge, to archery, nature connection games, night games, ukulele lessons, circus skills, nature craft and astronomy. Full day workshops include foraging, wild basketry and pottery and living willow.

nature mandala
Dates: Weekends in March to October plus mid-week during school holidays and half terms throughout this period. There’s so much going on here, please visit the link for when and what
Time: Varies – from 10 to 11am starts, and afternoon sessions 2-4/5pm.
Cost: £6 p/h for half day sessions, £60-70 for full day workshops (10.30am-4.30pm)
Age: Below 5yrs need to be accompanied by a paying adult, see each workshop description for individual age range
Location: Wowo Campsite, Wapsbourne Manor Farm, Sheffield Park, Nr Uckfield, TN22 3QT
Web: wowo.co.uk/workshops.html
Email: workshops@wowo.co.uk
Phone: 01825 723414
Contact name: Alice Bettany
Notes: Booking is essential via the website. Half-day workshops: Meet in BIGWOOD for daytime workshops (Reception can provide directions) and for NIGHTGAMES meet outside the barn by Reception five minutes before start. For all sessions please bring a healthy snack and drink as well as warm appropriate clothes, even if it is sunny when workshops begin! If you or your child have any health or dietary issues that may help Wowo provide the best service for you, please instruct the office of this information in advance by emailing camping@wowo.co.uk
Full-day workshops: Please bring a packed lunch, ideally to share (advised vegetarian) as it’s much nicer all eating together.  You may wish to bring a notepad and pen, camera (though please ask other participants and the instructor if they mind if you capture them first), suitable footwear, suncream/hat, warm clothes etc., and any tools in particular that Wowo suggests you bring for the workshop. You may also wish to bring something soft/warm to sit on as workshops will be outside on wooden benches. Meet by the barn at campsite reception five minute before start time.
You could also try: 

SPORTS

LEWES FC

Description: Football sessions are at the core of the programme here, supplemented by multi-sport sessions. There could also be themed days such as ‘American Sports Day‘, and ‘Best of British‘. All are for both boys and girls. Kids are split into age groups and sessions are supervised by experienced FA Level 2 and 3 coaches. Days can be booked as singles or as any combination of full and half days that are needed. There are also indoor and outdoor activities planned, so sessions will carry on whatever the weather. Multi-sports every Thursday will cover American sports such as softball, dodgeball and ultimate frisbee, and alternative games such as boxing, volleyball and frisbee golf.

Lewes FC is currently looking into booking a teacher to do a sports journalism course on Mondays for older kids, as well as an age-specific session/day for years 7 to 9. Keep checking back here for updates – or contact Lewes FC direct.

3g-pitch-1Dates: 20 Jul-28 Aug
Time: 10am-3pm (full day); 10am-12 noon or 1-3pm (half day)
Cost: Half-day, £12; full day £20; 2 days, £35; 3 days, £50; 4 days, £65; 5 days, £80 (all prices when booking ahead. Turning up on the day will cost more)
Discount: 10% when booking with code ‘Little Lewes’
Age: 4-11 (those in reception class now, up to Year 6)
Location: The Dripping Pan, Mountfield Road, Lewes, BN7 2XA
Web: lewesfc.com
Email: adam@lewesfc.com
Phone: 01273 470 820 / 07585 706 591
Contact name: Adam Wolecki
Notes: Pre-booking must include full payment. Players should bring: football kit and warm/waterproof clothing (plus a spare kit and tracksuit in case of bad weather; boots and trainers; shin pads are compulsory; hat or cap plus sun cream (if hot weather); packed lunch, snacks, fruit and plenty of drinks (water or squash but no fizzy drinks please). In the unlikely event that a session doesn’t have enough players booked, it will be cancelled and any monies already paid will be refunded.

SKiL

Description: SKiL (standing for Spring Kids into Life) is a not-for-profit local community interest company working to provide more opportunities to take part in physical activity along with affordable, quality childcare. Through fun coaching, teaching and instruction, it works to develop social confidence in kids. Its sports-based activities encourage teamwork, increase grassroots participation and through it all, identifies areas of talent.

Hcc Academy 2

Dates + Times: Hailsham Community Sports Hall: Weekdays in weeks starting 27 Jul and 3, 10, 17 and 24 Aug, 8.30am-5.30pm. Downs Junior School, Brighton: Weekdays in weeks starting 27 Jul and 3, 10 + 17 Aug, 10am-4pm
Cost: £15-£25 per day; £10.50 per half day
Discount: 10% when booking with code ‘LL15’. This cannot be used in conjunction with any other offers
Location: Hailsham Community Sports Hall, BN27 1DT and Downs Junior School, Brighton, BN1 6ED
Web: skil-cic.co.uk
Email: info@skil-cic.co.uk
Phone: 01273 476 873
Contact name: Richard Harrison
Notes: Loose, comfortable and weather appropriate clothing needs to be worn: track trousers, shorts, T-shirts and trainers. No jeans or button shirts please. Bring plenty to drink and a healthy lunch. Further details on the website.

TMS SPORTS

Description: These football courses are aimed at boys and girls aged between 4-11. Children will be split into groups based on age/ability. The coaches plan sessions based on fun games, ensuring all children improve whilst having fun. Perfect for beginners! Any combination of dates and sessions can be booked. The dates are 99% confirmed, but will be finalised by the end of this week.

Dates: Jul: 28, 29, 30 Aug: 4, 5, 6, 11, 12, 13, 18, 19, 20
Time + cost: Breakfast: 8.30-9.30am, £2; Full Day: 9.30am-3pm, £15 (pre-booked) or £18 (on the day); Half Day: 9.30am-12.30pm, £8; Extra Time: 3pm- 4.30pm, £3
Discount: 10% off when booking with code ‘Little Lewes’
Age range: 4-11 
Location: Wallands Primary School, Gundreda Road, Lewes, BN7 1PU
Email: tmsportscoaching@hotmail.com
Phone: 07928 197 950
Contact name: Tom Miles
Notes: Suitable footwear and clothing must be worn. Packed lunch required (no fizzy drinks or sports drinks please). Bottles can be re-filled. Indoor facilities available.

You could also try:
Little Ninjas
Run School (run by Wet Wet Wet Swim School)
Southdown Sports Club
Wave Leisure – for sport and general holiday clubs across the Lewes District

PRE-SCHOOL

These are activities that are running through the summer where pre-schoolers can be taken by parents and where in some cases their older siblings join in. They’re not classed as childcare.

THE ARTY SPACE

Description: A fun local arts and crafts group in Lewes for under fives that offers a different crafty theme to make each week from ‘Trip to the Moon‘ to ‘In the Garden‘, as well as all the regular tables for painting, gluing and messiness. Lots of fun for your mini budding artists! Visit the website to see the planned themes over summer. This is for pre-schoolers and their parents, but during the summer, older siblings are welcome to join too. (For a full lowdown on The Arty Space, see the Little Lewes post about it here.)

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Dates: Kings Church: Tue 28 Jul, 25 Aug, 1 Sep. All Saints: Thu 23 + 30 Jul, Fri 14 + 28 Aug
Time: Two sessions per day: 10-10.50am and 11-11.50am
Cost: £6 per child
Age: 1-5 (but older siblings very welcome over the summer holidays)
Web: theartyspace.com
Email: info@theartyspace.com
Phone: 07815 874 323
Location: King’s Church, Brooks Road (opp. Homebase), Lewes, BN7 2BY. All Saints Church (small hall round the back), Friars Walk, Lewes, BN7 2LE
Contact name: Claire Fowler
Notes: All children must be accompanied by an adult. Each session has a maximum of 15 places. 

THE FIREWORKS

Description: Not so much a holiday club in terms of childcare, but a great thing to do with children of all ages. Located at the top of Lewes High Street, The FireWorks offers pottery painting and decopatch and there are toys and drawing materials to keep younger siblings busy. There’s also a larger room downstairs that’s usually for private parties where people can spread out a bit in the summer. Come along as a group and have this space and its music system!

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Dates: Open all summer, Tue-Sat
Time: 10.30am-5.30pm
Cost: Studio fee of £4 per painter, plus the cost of the bisque item you’re painting (there are around 250 available and a mug is £7 for example)
Discount: 15% per painter when quoting code ‘Little Lewes’

Web: fireworkslewes.com
Email: mail@fireworkslewes.co.uk
Phone: 01273 483 007 / 07880 513 316
Location: 31 Western Road, Lewes, BN7 1RL
Contact name: Eileen Gorrell
Notes: During the holidays booking for parties of more than four is advisable. 

PELLS PADDLERS

Description: This splash-and-play group for under fives and their parents/carers has been going for several years. There’s water play equipment, sand, lots of splashing and it always ends with song time. The group is there whatever the weather. Bring a rug to sit on. For more on the Pells Pool, see here.

IMG_4327

Dates: Every Tue from 30 Jul through summer
Time: 10-11.30am
Cost: £3 per family. The pool opens at midday and families can stay on and get £1 off normal pool admission prices. See those here
Web: pellspool.org.uk/page9.htm / insideoutside.moonfruit.com
Email: Through the contact page at insideoutside.moonfruit.com
Phone: 01273 483 007 / 07880 513 316
Location: Pells Pool, Brook Street, Lewes, BN7 2BA
Contact name: Jenny Arran
Notes: The group is for kids age five and below – unfortunately we can’t accommodate older siblings. 

You could also try the following museums, galleries and visitor attractions for holiday events, programmes and workshops: 

Arundel Castle, Arundel
Brighton Museums
, Brighton and Hove
The De La Warr Pavilion, Bexhill-on-Sea
Ditchling Museum of Art and Craft, Ditchling
Herstmonceaux Castle
The Jerwood, Hastings
The Observatory Science Centre, Herstmonceaux
Sussex Past (Lewes Castle, Anne of Cleves House, Michelham Priory)
The Towner, Eastbourne
The various National Trust properties near Lewes, especially Nymans

Disclosure: All the places listed in this post have agreed to contributing a nominal fee for inclusion in order to cover my time and energies in administrating the gathering and editing together of its content, and promoting it on social media.

The post has been put together alphabetically as categories of activities for ease use – within each category the places are also listed again alphabetically. No preference for one place over another is intended or implied – this is a straight listings post, with information provided by each place, that acts as advertising for those places listed.

This post is not a review or endorsement by Little Lewes, and Little Lewes accepts no responsibility for false information given, or bookings made as a result of what’s published here that may not give a true representation of what the club or programme includes. Bookings made are entirely at the parents’/reader’s discretion.

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I’m Kate, a copywriter, brand consultant and editor who creates messages that are clear and clean. I create these for brands and agencies both big and boutique, in areas including design, homes and interiors, travel, fashion, lifestyle, beauty, food, and kids and families. I believe clear, clean messages bolster brands and businesses. They evoke emotion and ignite inspiration, and when written well, they’re easier to absorb – and respond to. I live in Copenhagen and am half-English, half-Danish. I write as comfortably in American English as in British, and behind the scenes I'm also studying Danish. Need help getting your message out? Contact me.

8 thoughts on “HAPPY HOLIDAYS! 2015 Summer Holiday Clubs, Courses and Programmes for Kids in and Near Lewes, East Sussex

  1. Congratulations on this. I can see how it must have been a rather hellish to put together. Brilliantly done though, and I’m sure I’m not the only one who is very grateful. Sx

    1. Thank you Sarah! Please share away at Southover if you will – more it gets spread around the better for the clubs. x

  2. This is absolutely brilliant Little Lewes, so valuable!
    I have shared it with all my mumma friends and school PTA.
    Mind if I put up a poster at school, I know a lot of people will find this an absolute God send!
    Ace work xx

    1. Thanks Jody! Sure you can make a poster! Would love you to do that and I know the clubs would too. xxx

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