We always enjoy giving the young people new experiences here at Silx and during the Summer months we like to arrange trips and residential opportunities outside of Blyth. This Summer we arranged for a group of young people to spend the weekend at Dukeshouse Wood. Dukeshouse wood is an outdoor adventure and activity centre set in the ‘leafy suburbs of Hexham’- keep on reading to find out what our young people got up to………
Friday September 1st 2017
The young people from Silx and our friends from Newsham and New Deleval Youth Forum set off accompanied by workers Jackie, Kelly, Kev and Mel. The group arrived at Dukeshouse Wood at 2:30pm and were shown around by group leader Jamie and were taken to their dorms where they had time to unpack and take in their new surroundings. The first activity kicked off at 5pm and the young people had to find their inner daredevil as they took part in the high ropes challenge! The young people had to climb the pole and make their way across a seesaw that was erected high in the air, this activity really tested the nerves of the young people and I’m sure you will agree they were incredibly brave!
After dinner and a refuel the young people then took part in the evening activity ‘Mini Olympics’ this was a great activity, the young people were given the chance to work as a team and took part in various games, this was a really fun way to tire the young people out and end the first day!
After the excitement of the day the young people enjoyed Hot Chocolate and Biscuits outside the dorms and it was bed by 11pm!
Saturday 2nd September 2017
The young people were up early and raring to go! After breakfast the first activity kicked off at 9:30am this was ‘Bush Craft’ and ‘fire lighting’
Bushcraft was a really good activity that allowed the young people to learn how to survive in the wilderness, they were taught how to build a shelter and of course how to light a fire. This was a wonderful way for the young people to learn how to work together as team, learn survival techniques as well as life skills.
After a quick break it was then time for the young people to get their harnesses on and get their brave heads on as it was time to take on the Zipwire! The young people loved this activity and took it in turns to step off the platform and fly down the zipwire which was very high! This activity required the young people to be incredibly brave and they all showed fabulous group spirit by encouraging each other and cheering each other on!
There was one more activity before the group had lunch and this was ‘The Nightline’ this activity was so much fun and the young people thought it was hilarious! The young people were all blindfolded and had to navigate their way through an obstacle course, this was a really fun way for the young people to work on their communication skills and they really had to put their trust in each other, which made the group bond.
After Lunch the young people found their inner Robin Hood and took part in an Archery session, the young people took it in turns to use the bows and arrows to hit a series of targets, the young people enjoyed this and even the workers had a go!
After archery, it was time for the young people to put on their safety gear again and head for the 3G Swing. The young people were able to control how high they went on this swing and once they had reached the height of their choice they then had to pull a rip cord and they flew back and forward through the air, the workers looking from the ground were very proud at how brave the young people that took part were with some of them taking the swing as high as it would go!
After the excitement of the swing there was one more activity before Dinner and this was Fencing. The young people were given full protective clothing and taught the basic fencing skills of attack and defence and then they went on to compete against eachother!
After Dinner and an incredibly busy day the young people had one last activity which was Marshmallows around the campfire, this was a lovely way to end the day and reflect on their experiences. The young people were asked to say one good thing about the trip and one bad thing- the responses of the young people were very good. A lot of the young people said that they loved that Silx and Newsham went on the trip together and although originally they had been apprehensive they had enjoyed this and made new friends! One young person who was particularly shy, spoke in the group and this was a major achievement for him and also some of the older young people were worried about starting 6th Form and College and said they enjoyed having one last Summer opportunity before their new adventures begin!
Sunday 3rd September 2017
The young people still had a few activities to enjoy before hometime the first being an obstacle challenge! This was great fun and the young people took it in turns to work their way across the course! There was lots of falling over and laughing!
The final activity of the weekend was ‘Jacobs Ladder’ the young people had to put their newly learnt teamwork skills to the test and work in small groups to make their way up a giant high ropes ladder, this took a lot of courage and encouragement and the young people loved it, what a great way to end the weekend!
After Lunch it was time to pack up and travel home, there was lots of tired young people after their action packed weekend but they all said how much they had enjoyed themselves! What a wonderful way to end the Summer 🙂