Family events

Our events, specifically arranged for children with a vision impairment and their families, around the UK, are a great way for families to take a break and meet others in a similar situation, in a safe and secure environment.

Relaxing and having fun can encourage children with sight loss to develop confidence and make new friends. One family who attended a recent event said:

Today was a brilliant opportunity for vision impaired children to be able to play with others who have similar conditions. It was also great as a parent to be able to gain useful information to better inform me before attending our annual EHC Review. Thank you for a lovely day out.

Feedback from the Summer Party at Gulliver's World on Saturday 16 June 2018

Representatives of our children’s services teams are present at each event to offer support and discuss any areas of concern you may have regarding your child’s vision impairment.

Children with a vision impairment plus one parent/guardian go free to most events and there is a small charge for immediate family members.

Events include trips to:

  • the pantomime
  • Easter, Summer and Christmas parties
  • a family weekend for families with a child recently diagnosed with a vision impairment
  • family guide dog experience days
  • events in partnership with other charities

 

Amazing day with amazing people. The staff are almost like family. Being with people that get it and swapping ideas and information is invaluable. Thanks Guys.

Feedback from the Blair Drummond Safari Park family event on Thursday 5 July 2018

Please see our events below, which are added to regularly.​

Each event has a flyer with further information. To request places, a booking form needs to be completed and returned to the Family Events Team who will then make contact with you to confirm places.

Fantastic day! So informative and interesting. Also a huge confidence boost for two children who were a little uncertain of dogs. Our son really enjoyed his experience of being led by the guide dog. A really helpful experience and something to think about for the future. Thank you! What a lovely team!

Feedback from the Family guide dog experience day on Thursday 25 October
Two young boys at a Guide Dogs event, assembling a long cane

 

Thomley Activity Centre, Menmarsh Road, Worminghall, Buckinghamshire HP18 9JZ

Join us at Thomley Activity Centre where we will have exclusive access to all the different tactile and fun activities going on throughout the day including:

  • playrooms
  • soft play area
  • art rooms
  • imagination room
  • music room

Bring a picnic to enjoy at lunchtime and take this great opportunity to spend the day with other children and their families, as well as representatives from our children and young people’s services team.

We look forward to seeing you there!

More info
Booking form

Meeting guinea pigs at the zoo

 

Vauxhall City Farm, 165 Tyers Street, London, SE11 5HS

Vauxhall City Farm is one of the oldest and most central city farms in London being located within earshot of Big Ben and in the shadow of MI6.

It allows children and their families to experience nature up close and provides a wide range of educational, recreational and therapeutic activities, such as:

  • animal handling
  • gardening
  • arts and crafts

Most importantly, everyone can enjoy a day of sensory activities and family fun!

Refreshments and lunch will be provided. This will be a great opportunity to spend the day with other children and their families, as well as representatives from our children and young people’s services team.

More Info
Booking Form

Long can user Oashia with a pony

 

Camel Creek Adventure Park, Tredinnick, Wadebridge, Cornwall, PL27 7RA

Bring the whole family for a cracking adventure in the beautiful Cornish countryside, with family-friendly rides, giant play areas and other all-weather attractions. Experience exclusive close-up animal encounters and try out the 10 new attractions for 2019.

Catch up with Guide Dogs staff from the children and young people's team, based in a private function room, with welcome drinks and a lunchtime hot and cold buffet. We'll be happy to answer any questions, offer advice and introduce you to other families with vision impaired children.

Children with a vision impairment, plus one parent/guardian, go free and immediate family members are £5 each with under-twos going free too. But make sure you book early, as we only have 60 spaces which will be filled on a first come first served basis.

More Info
Booking Form

A young girl kissing a guide dog

 

Guide Dogs Training Centre, Woodford Green, Near London IG8 8ER

This is a day when the whole family can experience what it would be like to own a guide dog. The programme includes:

  • welcome introductions
  • a practical hands-on dog handling experience for all family members
  • dog grooming
  • fun activities
  • a question and answer session

The day starts at 10.30am and will finish at around 3.00pm, with a lunch break where families can bring a picnic and we all have time to chat – drinks are provided.

Join us for a fun-filled and informative experience for the whole family.

More Info
Booking Form

A mother and her two boys enjoying a Guide Dogs family weekend

 

Windermere Manor Hotel, Rayrigg Road, Windermere, Cumbria LA23 1ES

The Family weekend is a unique opportunity for families of children, with a recent diagnosis of vision impairment, to access specialised services provided by the Guide Dogs’ children and young people team.

The team will also be on hand throughout the weekend to provide information and discuss any issues of concern and to run workshops for parents.

The weekend is an opportunity to meet other parents and exchange information as well as allowing everyone to join in family fun and games, including evening entertainment suitable for the whole family.

More Info
Booking Form

Merlin Entertainment

We have a corporate partnership with Merlin Entertainment, which gives discounted tickets for our families and staff to Merlin Entertainment venues such as Legoland, Alton Towers, Warwick Castle, Blackpool Tower, Edinburgh/York Dungeons, Sea Life Centres and many more.

Logos of attractions, to include Thorpe Park, Sea Life Centres and LegolandTo request a copy of the discounted offer leaflet please contact the Family Events Team at familyevents@guidedogs.org.uk.

You can pick up many buy one get one free offers on cereal packets/ bus tickets etc. and if you are a family of three, five, etc. or going at short notice then these can be useful.

There is a charity Merlin's Magic Wand, which has supported us over the last few years and parents may like to consider applying individually to this charity for free tickets to Merlin attractions.

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Do you need help?

Please get in touch if you'd like some advice, or to chat about how we can help you.