We’ve just enjoyed the hottest bank holiday on record, so it’s fingers crossed for the next one. Schools in Kirklees break up on Friday, May 26, until Monday, June 4, with the spring bank holiday falling on Monday, May 28.
For those planning a great day out with children during the holiday we’ve compiled a guide to eight exciting places/events offering something for all ages. Choose from a trip down t'pit, family ramble across the moors, journey on a miniature railway, lego modelling or other child-friendly activities.
Some events are free and all are in Kirklees or within an hour’s drive of Huddersfield.
Take a trip 140 metres underground
The National Coal Mining Museum near Wakefield offers a unique experience for families – the chance to travel deep underground and get a brief taste of what life was like for the men, women and children who worked in the mines. During half term the museum, which has free admission, will be populated with living history characters from the pit community’s past. Trips underground have to be booked ahead via ncm.org.uk and children must be five years and over. While admission is free, those going underground will be asked for a £4 deposit, which can then be donated to the museum.
Learn how to become a photographer
Half term will see a number of family events at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park, including a sculpture workshop on Sunday, May 27, and a Family Photography Workshop on Saturday, June 2. The artist-led workshops, both indoors and outdoors, are taking place throughout the day. They are open to children aged 11 and over, who must be accompanied by an adult. Tickets are £3 and should be booked in advance through ysp.org.uk
Get out into the great outdoors
The National Trust’s Marsden Moor Estate is hosting a Marsden Meander on Saturday, May 26, for families. The six-mile guided ramble around the moor’s reservoirs starts at 10am and ends at 3pm. Take a picnic and meet at Marsden Railway Station. The event is free and described as a ‘gentle walk’. Visit nationaltrust.org.uk/marsden-moor-estate for more information.
Feed the imagination with a Storywalk
Kirklees Libraries are holding a series of free family Storywalks throughout half-term in Golcar, Skelmanthorpe, Holmfirth, Ravensthorpe and Kirkheaton. The events aim to combine healthy outdoor exercise with stories on a circus theme. For times and availability visit communitydirectory.kirklees.gov.uk
Ride a miniature railway
Kirklees Light Railway, which operates between Clayton West and Shelley, has a special half term offer for children – take your favourite toy along and get a half-price ticket. Toys and their owners can enjoy a round trip for £2.75. Tickets for accompanying adults are £6.50 in advance from kirkleeslightrailway.com
Alternatively, weather permitting, the miniature railway in Greenhead Park should be operating over the holiday weekends and on Bank Holiday Monday from 1pm until 4pm.
Help build a giant Lego model
The refurbished Piece Hall in Halifax has activities over half term, including a day of Lego modelling on Wednesday, May 30. There’s a free drop-in activity from 10.30am until 2pm, in which participants will be invited to help create a model of the Piece Hall. However, Lego enthusiasts might like to sign up for a Bricks4Kidz workshop (10.30am, 12.30pm and 2pm) for £8. Visit thepiecehall.co.uk to book a place.
Get the best view in Huddersfield
The most famous landmark in Huddersfield – the Victoria Tower on Castle Hill – is open for the whole of half term, from May 26 until June 3, from noon until 4pm. It’s £1.95 for adults and 55p for children to climb ‘Rapunzel’s Tower’ and claim a panoramic view of the town. Don’t forget to snap a selfie at the top.
Enjoy an afternoon of fairytale ballet
The Hans Christian Andersen story of the Ugly Duckling and how she eventually comes to realise she’s beautiful is now a ballet for children, featured on CBeebies. Don’t miss the Northern Ballet production at the Lawrence Batley Theatre in Huddersfield on Tuesday, May 29. There are three performances, at 2pm, 4pm and 6pm. Suitable for children aged two to 10 years, it runs for just 40 minutes and promises an immersive experience of music, theatre and ballet. Tickets are £8 from thelbt.org.uk