A Dalek hunt, an artists café and slices of cake the size of breezeblocks. Worthing has a lot to offer at school holiday time!
So that was half term. I hope it was good for you and your children. Some of our most enjoyable days were the no pressure, no plan days where we just let things happen. I’ve included a few lines about three such days below. These were three simple parenting wins that worked for myself and Dougal without costing too much money or causing too much stress.
Hunting down the Daleks in Worthing (aka browsing in charity shops)
An empty day lay before myself and Dougal (aged 5). We had a few errands to run and a small budget for the day. A low key day beckoned. I packed a vaguely healthy (by small boy standards) picnic and we set off for Gull Island park in Worthing. As ever, talk turned to Daleks. Then inspiration struck. On my suggestion Dougal insisted that we search Worthing for Daleks. We agreed that charity shops would be the place to start the search and set off on a treasure hunt, browsing in Worthing’s many second hand shops. I had our final destination in mind and a dozen charity shops later we struck Dalek gold!
We entered the wonderful Type 40 science fiction memorabilia shop on Rowlands Road, in Worthing’s West End.
What a fantastic array of nostalgic models, comics, DVD’s and games lay before us. Daleks you say? They had several generations in stock, every variety, Davros would have been a proud genocidal maniac. It is all reasonably priced too.
My son was ecstatic, being an avid Dr Who fan and Dalek aficionado. We left the shop with a trophy Dalek and plans for Dougal’s pocket money for the next decade. Dougal dubbed Type 40 “the Dalek Shop”, and that is how it shall be known from now on.
Clambering and cake at Goring Gap and The Sea Lane
If your kids love clambering on rocks and digging around rock pools then Goring Gap is for you. If you love great coffee, cake or a legendary Full English Breakfast, the magnificent Sea Lane Café at Goring Gap is also for you.
Goring Gap beach is a long sweeping pebbly bay where people windsurf, walk their dogs and even ride their horses. There is a large safe grassy area for playing ball games or riding bikes. On a sunny day there is no finer place to be.
The Sea Lane Café is situated right on Goring beach and is a great place to visit all year round. The café offers lots of outdoor seating as well as cosy booths inside. The food and drink are delicious, for me the Sea Lane breakfast is the silver bullet that has exorcised the most stubborn hangovers. The Sea Lane offers the best selection of cakes I have ever seen, they are of the highest quality and ENORMOUS! This place should be Mecca for the cake enthusiast.
Always bring your bricks to the table
So we’re having a great time at Gull Island, the boys are playing idyllically and then it starts to rain. No, this cannot be!
Luckily we have plan B, which comes in the shape of lunch at St Paul’s Café. This place is a child friendly gem. A converted church with a great lunch menu and book exchange. Located in the centre of Worthing, St Paul’s never disappoints. It has a great atmosphere and there is always something musical or artistic happening, it’s a real local creative hub.
However, keeping two five year olds seated at a table and engaged in something other than an iPad can test the skills of even the black belts of parenting. I am no black belt, but I have Lego in a box in my ruck sack, quite a lot actually. Things immediately take a more sedate turn, boys settle, are focused and building begins. Coffees are drunk and uninterrupted conversation ensues as the boys build merrily. Back of the parenting net!
You made it! We salute you, every one of you.
My final recommendation for half term is the C0-op’s Fairtrade Malbec. A smooth and fruity end to a pleasantly busy week off with my little partner in crime.
For a cheap and relaxing family outing do come and try out my Lego Club. On Thursdays I run one session from 4-5pm at St Paul’s Café in Worthing. On Saturdays I run a session from 10-11am and then another session from 11.30am-12.30pm in the Browning room at Heene Community Centre. Full details are available on the Lego Club Facebook page. You can pay on arrival or book tickets in advance.
Thanks for reading this. Al. x