Latest from CK

WIN A YEAR’S SUBSCRIPTION TO ANORAK

We’re celebrating Anorak’s 14th anniversary by offering you the opportunity to win a year’s subscription to Anorak.

 

With a circulation of over 20 000 worldwide, Anorak and sister publication Dot (now 5 years old) have carved a niche that is internationally acclaimed and recognised. Not bad for a magazine that distributors said would never last. As fellow print lovers, we’ve decided to celebrate this momentous milestone by offering City Kids readers the chance to win a year’s subscription to Anorak.

 

 

Their latest iconic issue features artist Mugariah and is all about imagination. It’s also available both as a paper edition and as a digital one.

Cathy Olmedillas launched Anorak 14 years ago without any real strategy in mind. Alongside its sister publication DOT, it’s become an integral part of family life and inspired many children and parents to learn through creativity. This effect has been especially prominent during the turbulent times of the Covid-19 lockdown, in which homeschooling had become necessary.

After 14 years, Anorak has not only launched many great illustrators’ careers but also brought back the notion of creativity in childhood.

Following Anorak’s mission, the publication created a Little Editors scheme helping to raise the next generation of creative doodlers through drawing missions that are sent out every month! Although Anorak and DOT have been spreading joy and creativity over the past years with their uniquely themed issues, there is still much more to come with books and podcasts during the planning stage!

Don’t miss out on other giveaways, news or offers. Sign up to our newsletter here

How to enter:

All you need to do is complete the contact form below and we’ll draw a winner on Monday 5 October 2020.

 

 

Ts & Cs
The decision of City Kids is final.
No cash alternative.
If the winner does not claim the prize pithing 24 hours of notification, City Kids reserves the right to draw a new winner.
UK entries only.

ADVICE FOR BACK TO SCHOOL ANXIETY

Butterflies at the start of the new school year are normal, but after the year we’ve had, Dr Kathy Weston offers some advice for back to school anxiety.

 

By Dr Kathy Weston

It can be normal for parents, even in ‘normal’ times to worry about the new school year. Whether your child is heading off to nursery, primary or transitions to senior or secondary school, parents will worry. Often those worries centre on the administrative burden that comes with a school start and on the ‘unknowns’ that come with a child joining a new class or school setting. What follows outlines some ideas on how to handle back to school anxiety.

What is striking is that children very often possess a different set of worries to their parents. Parental worry typically centres around children or young people’s ability to socialise, connect with others, make friends and the extent to which their child’s physical and mental health needs might be met over the next academic year. Children tend to be very practical when it comes to worrying. How will I get to school? What will the bus be like? Will I get lost? Who will pick me up? Who will be at home when I get back? It is not uncommon for children to be concerned about how they might navigate around the school building, where they sit for their lunch and how they will remember all the things they have to remember.

Coupled with these ‘normal worries’ that manifest in ‘normal times’, some children may experience anticipatory anxiety related to COVID-19. Is the classroom different? Can I play with my friends? Will I be able to play the same games? Some, but not all children, will worry on a larger scale about virus transmission and carry some anxiety left over from the experience of lockdown.

Breeding resilience

The good news is that parents play a powerful role when it comes to both alleviating anxiety in children and modelling a positive and resilient approach that can help children get school-ready. As a family, it is a useful exercise to reflect back on the experience of lockdown and to extract positives associated with the experience. Where were the silver linings? What did we learn about ourselves and others? Celebrate your resilience as a family over that period, so that your child begins to see themselves as already resilient. This kind of reflection breeds resilience.

A second part of being school-ready is about airing all and any worries in a nice open chat with your child. Together, seek out solutions, ideas and thoughts that can alleviate or cancel a particular worry. Perhaps your child is worried about walking alone to school. What can we do about that? Coach them rather than provide solutions yourself. Model a proactive and positive approach and importantly, convey a sense of excitement and joy that your child is moving up a year in school, growing and developing. What are they excited about and looking forward to?

Controlling Covid anxiety

In terms of the dreaded virus, try and focus your child’s attention on life’s ‘controllables’; what your child can do or influence in relation to it. Underline the practical steps that they can take to stay healthy, emphasise the proactive work schools are doing in anticipation of school return and celebrate the innovation that is taking place across the scientific world, that will enable us, at some point to return to life, unmasked.

In the current climate, it can easy to forget the central role of school; as places of learning. It is important that parents continue to reiterate to their offspring, that we go to school to work hard and to learn and that is it important to try our best. Let’s stay aspirational, whilst making sure they stay calm, focused and positive.

Dr Kathy Weston is an academic, motivational speaker, wife and mother of two boys. She delivers talks to parents and teachers and also offers 1:1 coaching.

drkathyweston.com/

Having problems with sleep? Read advice from Rosey Davidson on getting back to healthy sleep habits.

TACKLING RACISM IN THE CURRICULUM

The Black Curriculum aims to shake up history taught in schools. Based on personal experience, Lavinya Stennett explains where the syllabus fails and how change will help us tackle racism in the curriculum.

 

The world seemed to finally notice the Black Lives Matter movement, following the murder of George Floyd. Global demonstrations gave rise to long-overdue conversations about racial history. This was the case of many parts of the world, including the UK, where cities have prospered on the foundations of the slave trade. It is a history rarely told in detail at school. The Black Curriculum is a social enterprise. It aims to revolutionise the history syllabus in this country for eight to 16 year olds. Its CEO, Lavinya Stennett, explains how she’s tackling racism in the curriculum.

System failure

Students are not being taught Black British History consistently. That is despite numerous findings which demonstrate its importance. Latest Home Office figures show that in 2017/18, there were 94,098 hate crime offences recorded by the police in England and Wales, 76% of which were racially aggravated.

The reality of racism operates in many ways, particularly through the lack of education and understanding of Black British history. The Macpherson Report showed that a culturally diverse curriculum is a way to prevent racism. Similarly, The Windrush Review recommended that colonial and migration history should be taught. So why are we still here today?

How racism in the curriculum impacts young people

When young people are not taught their history within Britain, their sense of identity is impacted. Social relations are hindered. A 2007 report on the over-representation of young Black people in the criminal justice system showed the link between these shortcomings as causing underachievement.

A proposed remedy suggests the ‘government should ensure history lessons are relevant to all young people in Britain’. The Black Curriculum recognises that Black history is British history.

The current curriculum and exam board specifications are limited in providing Black British history. Black history is not mandatory in schools that have their own curriculum. Without the resource, time and understanding, we are still going to face the same problems. We can not simply rely on parents and carers to provide this material.

Black British history is not merely a theme for October. It started hundreds of years before Windrush. It pre-dates European colonial enslavement. Our work aims to overcome these limitations. It provides a contextual and globalised history. Rooting the Black British experience in histories of movement and migration – 365 days a year.

We want to prepare students to become fully rounded citizens. Ready for an increasingly globalised world. Our curriculum is grounded in the arts, this allows them to engage with history imaginatively. It encourages satisfaction and critical thinking. Through our holistic approach we aim to remedy a wider issue.

About Lavinya

Lavinya is a historian, writer and First-Class graduate from SOAS.

The vision to create The Black Curriculum came from her firsthand experience in British education. She saw the impact of exclusion. Learning ‘Black history’ in the lone month of October was not enough. Studying abroad, she found the Indigenous and colonial history in Aotearoa was part of their everyday. It was accessible to everyone. She is determined to challenge the Eurocentricity of the school curriculum at a nationwide level in the UK. She believes in the power of education, and the arts to ultimately transform the lives of people.

www.theblackcurriculum.com

 

Many, many thanks go to Misan Harriman for use of his amazing image of Lavinya for Vogue’s September issue.

 

For more content around the subject of anti-racism, see our suggested books for children here.

 

 

BACK TO SCHOOL, BACK TO SLEEP

It’s the holy grail that all parents seek: SLEEP! Expert, Rosey Davidson offers advice on how to get back to normal bedtimes after an extraordinary year.

 



As the kids go back to school, we’re all hoping they’ll go back to sleep! 2020 has certainly been a year of challenges for most families. COVID-19 has had a huge impact on the sleep of our nation. Children are no exception. Increased screen time, later bedtimes, increased anxiety, time away from friends and normal support networks… the list goes on.

During the pandemic research tells us that there has been a significant shift in bedtimes and morning wake times – 70% of children under 16 are going to bed later (Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, ref: Sleep Council). The result of this is that it is harder than ever to transition to a ‘normal’ routine at the start of the school year.

Screen time has played such a big role in home schooling, but this heavy reliance on technology can have a devastating effect on sleep. Lots of exposure to blue and white light from devices can affect our drive to sleep and our production of melatonin (our sleep hormone). Essentially this means, the more screen time we have, the less sleepy we feel!

While it is quite normal for children to go to bed a little later during summer holidays, for many parents that bedtime/wake time has shifted far further than usual. Fear not though, there are positive steps that we can take to make the transition back to school a little easier…

My top tips to improving sleep habits.

  1. Make sure that you and your child get exposure to morning light – this is really valuable for our internal body clocks. Get outside for some fresh air early in the day.
  2. Cut screen time before bed – 1-2 hours of screen free time will really help you and your little ones to switch off.
  3. If your child uses a reading light in bed opt for an amber light – this is far less disruptive that blue/white lights.
  4. Ideally try to keep homework and other activities out of the bedroom – reserve it for sleeping only if possible. If not then perhaps put a screen across the room to cover the desk/workspace at night. This is important for your child to learn to switch off.
  5. Stick to a calm, consistent bedtime routine. Bath, story/or chat, cuddle and lights out. Children thrive on having clear boundaries. If your child is resisting bedtime I really like to create a bedtime poster together – detailing all of the steps towards bedtime and teaching them about the positive benefits of sleep to their bodies.
  6. If your child is anxious about returning to school and struggling to sleep, some simple mindfulness techniques can be helpful. Deep breath in and out, focusing on the breath and movement of the tummy can really help.

Prioritising your sleep and that of your child’s is not decadent. It will improve concentration, mood, support immune system, help maintain a healthy weight and more. Most of all, a well-rested child is a child ready to learn and embrace the new normal.

For more information visit:

justchillbabysleep.co.uk

@just_chill_mama

We have more fantastic advice on how to get back to routine as smoothly as possible from Zoe Blaskey

RAISE VITAL FUNDS FOR GOSH


RBC Race for the Kids goes virtual for 2020!

 

 

The annual RBC Race for the Kids, which will help to raise vital funds for Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH), is going virtual this Autumn.

 

Because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the hospital needs more support than ever so the charity is urging people to sign up for the first ever virtual RBC Race for the Kids. Over 10,000 people took part in last year’s event to run, jog, walk and scoot around the 5km iconic course in London’s Hyde Park. The hope is that more people will be able to take part virtually, wherever they are in the world.

The virtual event is open to supporters of all ages and abilities. Participants are encouraged to choose somewhere in their local neighbourhood, park or even a garden and ‘race’ your distance, your way. Race weekend is 17 and 18 October and helps to raise vital funds directly for GOSH Charity.

Who will the funds help?

The money raised will go towards funding the hospital’s most urgent needs. This includes research into pioneering new treatments, cutting-edge medical equipment, support services for children and their families, such as parent accommodation and the hospital’s Play team, and the essential rebuilding and refurbishment of the hospital.

Six-year-old Daniel will be racing for the first time with his mum Rosemary, dad Michael and older brother Joshua. He was treated at GOSH for a rare form of arthritis. A few days after bumping his knee whilst playing at home, Daniel began struggling to walk, had swelling and severe pain in his knee, ankle and elbow. Following multiple tests at his local hospital, Daniel was then referred to GOSH specialists.

 

 

 

 

Rosemary explains: “Daniel underwent many tests as doctors tried to rule out a number of conditions, he had MRI scans, blood tests, an echocardiogram, liver tests and bones looked at. Eventually the amazing team who had taken him under their wing were able to come up with a working diagnosis of Systemic onset Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis, an extremely rare disease.”

Rosemary said: “We are all looking forward to taking part in the virtual RBC Race for the Kids this October. We loved the event last year and feel so lucky that Daniel is able to run and take part in something like this, as there have been times over the past couple of years when we didn’t think that would be possible. Doing the race is a reminder of the freedom we have with Daniel since his health has returned and is maintained by ongoing support from GOSH. It will be really fun doing our own race in the countryside close to where we live and hopefully we’ll raise some money for GOSH Charity!”

 

 

Be part of something bigger

Created by Royal Bank of Canada, the RBC Global Virtual Race for the Kids will bring together for the first time tens of thousands of participants to support 36 children and youth charities in 16 countries – and by being virtual anyone can take part wherever they are in the world. GOSH Charity is thrilled to be the UK charity beneficiary and is urging supporters to sign up and help raise vital funds for seriously ill children from across the UK who are treated at GOSH.

Participants can now sign up for free at rbcraceforthekids.com, select their city and associated charity and choose their preferred race distance to complete during the weekend of the 17 and 18 October. The virtual race will have support and integration with most running apps and all participants will receive digital medals and rewards.

Over the last 10 years RBC Race for the Kids has raised over £6million for GOSH Charity, helping to make a difference to the lives of seriously ill children from across the UK.

For more information and to sign up to take part, please visit: rbcraceforthekids.com

About Great Ormond Street Hospital and Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity:

Great Ormond Street Hospital is one of the world’s leading children’s hospitals with the broadest range of dedicated, children’s healthcare specialists under one roof in the UK. The hospital’s pioneering research and treatment gives hope to children from across the UK with the rarest, most complex and often life-threatening conditions. Our patients and families are central to everything we do – from the moment they come through the door and for as long as they need us.

Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity needs to raise money to support the hospital to give seriously ill children, the best chance for life. The charity funds research into pioneering new treatments for children, provides the most up to date medical equipment, funds support services for children and their families and supports the essential rebuilding and refurbishment of the hospital. You can help us to provide world class care for our patients and families. For more information visit  www.gosh.org

 

SPONSORED CONTENT

 

 

CITY KIDS AUTUMN ISSUE IS OUT NOW

We’ve launched our Autumn issue and it’s fab, even if we say so ourselves!

 

CLICK THE IMAGE TO READ:

 

With a cover image from bobochoses.com, an array of things to do in London, advice and tips on how to get back into the swing of things, the City Kids Autumn issue is out now!

We’ve all made it to Autumn, without too much collateral damage, I hope. It’s not every day that images from a world-renowned photographer grace our pages, but we are forever thankful to Misan Harriman for sharing an image he shot for Vogue’s historic BLM issue. Why relevant for City Kids? Well Lavinya Stennett is trying to change the way our children’s history curriculum is taught. Head to p 27 to read her mission.

In our education special we’ve Lockdown Lessons, some amazing reads and some advice for parents and children trying to adapt to school and life in general from Dr Kathy Weston. We’ve one mother’s account of organising a child-friendly Black Lives Matter protest and Bev Turner acknowledges the juggling act parents face and are still facing as we try to work at home and adjust to a different world.

Elsewhere, we round up places to go in town which are now open as well as some great interiors and fashion finds. And a fanfare please for our very own Jo Pratt who launches The Flexible Family Cookbook. One of her recipes is on p18.

Until our next issue, stay glued to www.citykidsmagazine.co.uk as well as @citykidsmagazine on Instagram and Facebook for the latest news, views, parenting nuggets and fun stuff.

It’s been a very topsy-turvy year so we hope that you can find five minutes of calm to have a read and enjoy all our finds.

 

 

FAMILY STRESS: TIME TO RESET

The last six months has been the cause of much family stress for many. Zoe Blaskey tells City Kids that it’s time to reset

 

 

Six months ago, we were collectively thrown into the challenge of our lifetimes – a global pandemic and lockdown. Families braced themselves for a ‘perfect storm’ of challenges – school closures, loss of childcare, closure of all playgrounds, playgroups, camps and in fact, anything we could use to entertain our children. At the same time many parents were trying to juggle working from home (I’ve heard parents starting work at 2am to get half a day done before the children wake up) and homeschool at the same time. Family stress was at an all-time high, no wonder it’s time to reset.

It was unbelievably intense for many. In fact, 87%* of parents told me they are stressed with family life – still.

We had very little warning, and had to adapt our lives literally overnight. It was a time of survival. Getting through each day, collapsing at the end of it in front of the TV (or a laptop) ready to do it all again the next day. We had no idea how long this groundhog day would go on or what our future might look like.

And now it’s September and that ‘back to school’ feeling is turbo charged as we think about returning to some degree of normality for the first time since March. It’s time to reset.

Here’s how to use September to press the Reset button – to process what’s happened, build resilience for whatever else this year might throw at us and get back into some sort of routine.

5 steps to reset:

1. Stress is a natural response to uncertainty – but when we’re stressed for a long time without addressing it, it can become chronic and often shows in physical signs – exhaustion, headaches, digestive issues, aches and pains. Learn about stress – how it shows up for you (we all feel it differently) and what you can do about it.

2. Supporting ourselves: during lockdown many parents’ own needs went further down the pile than ever before. Of course it did. But in times of intense pressure, it’s even more important to look after ourselves. When things get pushed down and down, the result tends to be an explosion. Think of a beachball being pushed under water and then released. Your needs don’t go anywhere just because you’re not tending to them. ‘Self-care’ as a parent isn’t about expensive spa days or candlelit baths. It’s taking just 5 minutes every day to fill your cup back up. The trick is knowing what to do – my favourites are meditation, free writing and mindful breathing.

3. How to support your children: I’ve heard consistently that across all ages, children’s behaviour has changed through this experience – they too have been on an emotional corona-coaster. It’s really important we learn the tools to help our children process their challenging feelings. There’s neuroscience behind how to do this – it’s just a matter of learning the skills.

4. How to handle disappointments and change.  One thing is for sure, whatever the future may bring, it will bring change. Despite the rhetoric, of children handling change well, studies actually show children need more help with change than we may realise. Learn the ways to help your child handle change and disappointments that will make them feel heard, loved and connected to you – not pacified.

5. Reshape your future.  In a recent study* 83% of parents shared they want to make changes to family life going forwards but change only happens when we are deliberate about it. So this is a perfect time to reflect on where we’ve been and how you want to handle wherever we might be going.

Deep breath. And reset.

Zoe Blaskey is the creator of The Family Reset Plan which, together with Dr Emma Svanberg a clinical psychologist and Dr Nnkea Ikeogu a child psychologist, dives into each of these five areas with practical, yet really effective ways to future proof your family.

You can read more about it here and if you work for the NHS – it’s absolutely free in recognition of our gratitude.

See more back to school ideas here.

*2,000 National UK parents surveyed with One Poll

BACK TO SCHOOL: BAGS

10 of the Best School Bags

When the kids go back to school each Autumn, parents are faced with requests for new bags, stationery, shoes, coats etc. At City Kids we aim to make parenting less painful, so we’ve rounded up some of the best bags around. Whether you want colour, neutral, big or small, we have 10 great school bags to take you through the winter.

 

 

Mini Backpack in Navy Colourblock

£17.95

babymel.com

Vans Black and White Old School iii

£30

schuh.co.uk

Smiggle Illusion Reflective Access Backpack

£26.25

smiggle.co.uk

Personalised Blue Tribal Design Infant Backpack

£20

my1styears.com

Galaxy Attach Rucksack

£26.25

smiggle.co.uk

Engel Zipper Backpack

£32

kidly.co.uk

Mini Rodini Beige Notes School Rucksack

£90

alexandalexa.com

 

Allan Backpack Cat Mustard

50 euros

Liewood.com

Kids Eco Backpack

£39

jemandbea.com

Kids Leopard Print School Backpack

£20

marksandspencer.com

For some back to school shoes, take a look at our Start-Rite review here. 

BACK TO SCHOOL: START-RITE REVIEW

The countdown has started and back to school chat is on the agenda. As we get ready to go back to school, we’ve a review of Start-Rite shoes from Ivy-May and her mum.

 

Words: Jenny Estacio, Digital Marketing Guru at CK HQ

The lovely lot at Start Rite were kind enough to send us a brand new pair of school shoes to get the ball rolling on our back to school journey here at City Kids HQ. This was a perfect opportunity for 6 year old Ivy-May to give them a whirl and get started on back to school prep. She’s excited to go back to school where she’ll be reunited with her class. We hope you find this first Back to school review of Start-Rite shoes really helpful!

Measuring up 

We used Start Rite’s free printable measuring gauge to scope out just how much Ivy-May’s feet have grown over lockdown. Turns out she’s a whole half size bigger! Their measuring gauge is a lifesaver. It’s fairly straight forward and it’s great that you can beat the queues, especially with social distancing and if you’re in a hurry. In a nutshell, once you’ve got the width and length, you tap the measurements into their shoe size calculator and ta-da, you can start picking out your fave style. 

TOP TIP 1: We had to do this step twice. Please be warned, don’t assign this task to grandparents, as they’ll suggest a S13 for someone that’s actually an S11.5! That’s our lesson learned. I certainly did get flashbacks of having to wear my high school uniform 5 sizes too big at year 7. 

TOP TIP 2: If using Start Rite’s handy measuring gauge, double check your printer settings and be sure you print the measuring gauge to scale. A lot of printers will be set to “fit to page” which will make it pretty much useless. 

Picking styles on site 

For 6 year old Ivy-May this was one of the most exciting parts of the process. They had the loveliest styles for both girls and boys. From their classic Mary Janes to slightly more fun and playtime suitable looks. We filtered it down to the Patent Spirit, a modern twist on the Start Rite classic that I used to wear as a child. 

TOP TIP 3: Get the kids involved when it comes to picking the styles! Back to school prep, especially following lockdown can help to spark some excitement.

The Start Rite Patent Spirit Girls School Shoes

They arrived nice and quickly – we’re giving Start Rite a gold star for packing them in an eco friendly recycled box too. Having things delivered certainly beats heading to the shops and being met by the queues of other last minute shoppers. Of course, the shoes fit perfectly. The measuring gauge factors in room for growth too, so there really is no need to go a size (or two and a half) up! The Start Rite Patent Spirit is super smart, comfortable PLUS we love the patent shiny finish as this means it’ll look new for longer. 

Do check out Start-Rite’s wide range of school shoes here.

For more of our back to school bits, we’ve got a great round up of hand sanitisers etc here, and check out our roundup of lovely lunchboxes here. And in case you missed it, our back to school checklist here. Bring on the new school year, we are so ready!

 

 

THE BEST ICE CREAMS IN LONDON

It’s hot, sticky and we all want to cool down. What better way than to have one of the best ice creams in London. Here’s our guide.

Whether you’re a Mr Whippy fan or only the best Italian gelato will do, London serves up some of the best ice cream. Vegan, goats milk, cow’s milk, milkshakes, sorbets, sandwiches and toppings, you name it….

 

Duci
Devonshire Road, Chiswick, W4
ducilondon.com

Head to Duci for authentic Italian ice cream, Sicilian cannoli, lemon granitas and affogatos (they make great coffee).

Bears Ice Cream
Goldhawk Road, W12 & The Pavilion, Brook Green, W6
bearsicecream.co.uk

It’s not just Italians that can make gourmet ice cream. Bears offers Icelandic soft serve topped with endless goodies. Vegan options available as well as ice cream deliveries.

Marine Ices
Chalk Farm Road, NW1
marineices.co.uk

In London since 1931, Marine ices is a London landmark with over 24 ice cream flavours as well as sorbets, sundaes and cakes.

Hackney Gelato
Andrews Road, E8
hackneygelato.com

Locanda Locatelli alumni, Sam and Enrico, have won 15 Great Taste stars in the last two years and provide this corner of London with gourmet Sicilian inspired gelato and wicked milkshakes.


Yolkin
Rupert St, W1
yolkin.co.uk

What started as a stall now has a permanent spot in Soho specialising in ice cream sandwiches, largely made with macarons. Yum!

 

Related: The Best Family Take Away Picnics

Gelateria Danieli
Brewers Lane, TW9
gelateriadanieli.com

These guys supplied ice cream to the Queen on her 80th birthday, so if it’s good enough for her…They also make delicious chocolates.

Milk Train
Covent Garden, WC2
milktraincafe.com

Customise your own Milk Train ice creams and milkshakes by swirling a creamy base with different mix-ins. Or choose sundae options. Go choo-choo and add a choo-choo candy floss cloud to your ice cream or milkshake to fully board the Milk Train!

Box Park Shoreditch & Market Hall Victoria (temporarily closed)

Instagram worthy ice creams with a variety of toppings, choosing an image for this round-up was hard!

Greedy Goat
Borough Market
greedygoat.co.uk

Less allergenic than cow’s milk, these guys pride themselves on producing only goats milk ice cream. They also package their ice creams in glass jars making them kind to the planet too.

Nardulli’s
Clapham Common, SW4
nardulli.co.uk

Traditional ice-cream cones, cakes, glasses, semifreddi but also crepes (thin pancakes), confectionary and a variety of typical Italian products, all authentically made.

 

If your taste buds are awake, head to our food pages for more mouth watering ideas.

 

BEST PRODUCTS TO AID SLEEP

With sleepless nights on the increase, City Kids takes a look at the best products to aid sleep

 

 

2020 has seen anxiety hit new levels in kids and adults as we all try to navigate our new working and home lives. Sleep is commonly interrupted which adds to the problem. But sometimes restless nights or lack of sleep can just turn up out for no apparent reason at all. Insomnia is can turn into a vicious circle where we’re desperate to try ANYTHING to get some zeds. We’ve tried some of these natural remedies and put together our list of the best products to aid sleep.

Thisworks Baby Sleep Pillow Spray

Lizzie Loves Be Sleepy

Cowshed Baby Pillow Spray

Childs Farm Bedtime Suitcase 

Bloom and Blossom Dream Catcher’s Pillow Spray

Bloom and Blossom Very Hungry Caterpillar Baby Pillow Spray

 

 

For grownups 

Thisworks Deep Sleep Super Blend

My Expert Midwife Spritz For Sleep

Cowshed Sleep Body and Pillow Mist

 

Rituals The Ritual of Jing Deep Sleep Pillow Mist

Neom Perfect Night’s Sleep Pillow Mist

The White Company Sleep Candle

 

For more lotions and potions head to our round up of hand sanitisers and hand care.

 

Top image by Photo by Dakota Corbin

NEW CLUB GETSETGO! LAUNCHES

New Family Club, GetSetGo! will open in Putney early next year

Work has officially started on a brand new club GetSetGo! which launches for families in South West London early next year.  Expect a pool, studios, interactive play area, co-working space and a cafe. Opening in January 2021, GetSetGo! promises to be a safe, enriching and multifunctional space with a fresh take on activities for all the family.

GetSetGo! Putney is the brainchild of Claire and Alina who have secured nearly £2m of investment to get the works underway. Speaking about the brand’s vision, Founder and CEO Claire Harrison said:

“As both a parent but also a seasoned leisure professional, I saw a huge gap in the market when it came to children’s activities. I have experienced too many times the distinct lack of suitable space to provide children’s activities across the capital. I started asking myself the questions every mum, dad and grandparent asks: Why am I paying so much money for my children’s activities, yet sat on dirty church, village halls and pub floors? Why am I having to juggle schedules, dashing from one place to another waiting for my children’s classes to finish? Trying to grab twenty minutes to do some work in between classes and never ever having any time for myself.  The potential for a setting like GetSetGo! became glaringly obvious and so I decided to do something about it!”

Claire’s no stranger to the family activity market having set up hugely successful Swimming Rocks. Probably why it was essential to build a pool into GetSetGo!’s plans. And those among you with your ear to the ground will know that GetSetGo! is being created on the old Purple Dragon site in Putney.

GetSetGo! Putney will offer a full programme of activities, combining a mix of in-house signature sessions and classes offered from established activity brands. From baby groups to teen fit, ‘mummy and me’ exercise, to post-natal sessions Dance, martial arts, swimming lessons and so, so much more for children; not forgetting the adult group sessions that will be offered before and after work.

After the action, mum and dad can hit the café lounge for a light bite, healthy smoothie or much-deserved glass of wine, while little ones explore the hidden nooks and crannies that have been cleverly incorporated to encourage and promote independent play and learning.

GetSetGo! have also created a unique hybrid workspace that will allow parents to pursue their career without comprising parenthood – or facing the overwhelming guilt of trying to do it all! The co-working space offers the ideal solution, while also having the option of a lunch and coffee break, as well as an activity during the day.

Families will be able to join classes on a pay-as-you-go system or as part of a monthly or annual subscription, ensuring that the inspired setting is accessible to all without the hefty membership fees just to get through the door.

Clubs in Chelsea, Golders Green and Marylebone are due to follow.

For more information: get-set-go.com

 

FOR MORE FAMILY FOCUSSED NEWS HEAD HERE

HANDWASH, SANITISERS AND HANDCARE

We’ve learned a lot about ourselves and the coronavirus during the past few months and hand hygiene has been a constant. Here’s our roundup of handwash, sanitisers and handcare.

*Virtual* hi-fives to families for keeping on top of hand hygiene, especially since the start of the pandemic. 

We’ve searched high and low for the best handwash, sanitisers and handcare products on the market. They’re hands-down going to make hand-washing fun again (that’s aside from the happy birthday hack, of course). 

As an added BONUS a handful of our great finds go the extra mile, either giving back to the community, charities or are #plasticfreejuly compliant.

 

Handwash

SCRUBBINGTONS

With 100% recyclable and reusable refill pouches that save 78-82% of plastic it’s a big thumbs up for Scrubbingtons.

CHILDS FARM

Suitable for newborns and upwards. Dermatologist and paediatrician approved as suitable for sensitive skin and safe for people who may be prone to eczema.

BLOOM AND BLOSSOM

These guys always come up with great collaborations and this one with the Roald Dahl Story Company is a great one.  98% naturally derived ingredients and smells just peachy!

 

NEAL’S YARD

Formulated with a naturally soothing blend of organic chamomile, lavender and propolis cleanses hands gently and is suitable for little hands from newborn.

NURSEM

For every product sold, Nursem donates a month’s worth of free Nursem products to a nurse or midwife. Space NK will double the Nursem promise – so for every Nursem product sold at Space NK, two nurses or midwives will receive a month’s worth of free Nursem products.

 

Sanitisers 

MUCKY PUPS

The Mucky Pups Hand Sanitiser is the first hand sanitiser for children which has been proven 99.9% effective against bacteria, spores, viruses and moulds. Easy to use, fragrance-free and gentle enough for repeated use.

NEOM

For every pack of 3 bought, Neom gives a pack of 3 Clean & Happy Hand Sanitiser Gel to the true superheroes – the NHS. This gel has 65% alcohol to kill 99% of germs but with added glycerine, it won’t dry your hands.

MARGARET DABBS LONDON

A divine and unique antibacterial formulation that leaves hands clean, refreshed and hydrated. Contains 65% alcohol, proven effective at killing harmful germs and bacteria.

AESOP

A non-drying, alcohol-based formulation with purifying and hydrating properties, to cleanse hands effectively when fresh water is unavailable.

THIS WORKS

Travel friendly, 70% alcohol and 100% natural essential oils of Lavender, Neroli and Camomile plus Hyaluronic Acid to clean, protect and hydrate hands without the need to rinse.

 

 

GUIDE TO HOLIDAY CLUBS AND CAMPS

Activity providers have just been given the green light to reopen so holiday clubs and camps are go!

The prayers of parents up and down the land have been answered as holiday clubs and camps have been given permission to go ahead this summer. If you’re still not 100% confident about attending a holiday camp or club in person, there are still plenty of online options available, whether you’re in London or not. Booking for in-person camps will be essential as all will be running with bubbles. Here’s our guide to holiday clubs and camps to help you out.

THE LITTLE GYM

After the enforced break, themed activity camps that not only teach gymnastics but also work on confidence, self-esteem and creativity are back. The doors are being flung open for pirates, princesses, magic wizardry and superheroes for children aged 3-12yrs in Chiswick, Westfield, Wandsworth, Hampton Hill.

thelittlegym.eu/uk

CREATIVE WIZ KIDS 

A Hampstead favourite is now launching in Hammersmith too. Creative Wiz Kids is the brainchild of a professional artist who has run camps for 30 years. Creative Wiz Kids holiday clubs are packed with exciting art projects, both themed and free Art. Activities include painting, crafts, dance, drama games, music, face painting, free play and storytime. The wider age range enables children to create individually at their own level and also to collaborate across ages should they choose. We offer clubs that are both structured and free-form.
3-9 year olds

creativewizkids.com

FIRETECH

Innovative and creative tech camps covering Junior Python, all-girls coding, video game design, Python and Java coding, Creative Digital Design, Unity 3D and more.
VIRTUAL

firetechcamp.com

WILL TO WIN

Tennis and padel courts across the capital are now open. Lots of drills, games and match play with an emphasis on fun!
4yrs+ Chiswick, Ealing, Regents Park, Hyde Park.

willtowin.co.uk

ARTS ED SUMMER SCHOOL

Acting and musical theatre summer school which teaches audition techniques, gives West End training and offers the chance to make your own movie. All from the best in the business.
7-16 yrs+
VIRTUAL

artsed.co.uk

LITTLE HOUSE OF SCIENCE

Curious minds encouraged to explore, experiment and play via live online classes.
4-11yrs
VIRTUAL

littlehouseofscience.com

FIT FOR SPORT

Activity camps which have been running for 25 years to give children the opportunity to try a variety of sports and activities.
4-12 yrs all over London.

fitforsport.co.uk

CAMP ENGLAND

Multi-sports camp aiming to develop sporting talent as well as ‘Life Skills Through Sport’ such as resilience, teamwork, empowerment and responsibility.
5-13 yrs East Molesey, Teddington, Hampton, Esher, Kingston

campengland.co.uk

CAMP BEAUMONT

Multi-activity camp hosted at schools with some of the best facilities in town.
Various locations across London.
3-16 yrs

www.campbeaumont.co.uk/our-camps

CYPHER CODERS

Coding and tech-inspired camps which touch on themes such as music, robotics, nature, oceanography and art.
Various locations are now open for in-person camps but there are also virtual offerings.
5yrs+

cyphercoders.com

ET PATATI PATATA

Learn French from native speakers in this 30 hour a week immersion school. Gold Award holiday camp.
4-16 yrs
VIRTUAL

etpatatipatata.com

KITE STUDIOS

Due to Covid-19, Kite studios have moved loads of courses online, and you can even book one to one sessions.
VIRTUAL

kitestudios.org

SHOOTING STARZ

Choose from multi-sports, football, netball or mini skills and book half, full or extended days or weeks at camp.
Club Des Sports Acton.
3-13 yrs

shootingstarz.co.uk

ROCKS LANE

Multi-sports, netball and football on offer with lunchbox included.
3-12 yrs Chiswick, Barnes, Bishops Park

rockslane.co.uk

For more things to do, head to our What’s On page.

STAYCATION: WHERE TO HOLIDAY IN THE UK

The desire for a change of scene is strong. Here’s our staycation guide to where to holiday in the UK this summer.

 

After months of being locked up, summer is here and we’re looking for a holiday, probably in the UK so here’s our pick of staycation options.

 

SCOTT DUNN X GLENEAGLES

A first UK Scott Dunn Explorers Kids club has arrived at Gleneagles, home to an 850-acre playground set in teh rolling Ochil Hills. Launching on 1st August, the action-packed programme will offer wee ones from 4 months up to those in their mid-teens a brilliant range of activities and country pursuits in the great outdoors – the ultimate active summer staycation for all the family.

GAMBLEDOWN FARM

Deep in the Hampshire countryside, you’ll find a green oasis of luxuriously appointed safari tents. It’s a safe wonderland for kids to explore, with eggs to collect daily and farm tours by the owners. Plus you can feast on homegrown produce cooked on your BBQ each day.

HOME FARM GLAMPING

Another staycation favourite nearly fully booked is Home Farm Glamping. Snap up the last remaining yurts and have a fantastic, away-from-it-all adventure in the Hertfordshire countryside.

RETALLACK RESORT & SPA

Not far from Cornwall Airport Newquay, the culinary delights of Padstow and and the botanic wonders of the Eden Project, these timelessly stylish boutique-barns have a contemporary and globally luxurious sophistication, blending architectural design and new interiors styling. Perfect for a mini-break or extended holiday.

THE PIG HOTELS

You’ll have to get in quick to bag some nights away at one of The Pig’s gorgeous hotels. An eighth luxuriously appointed residence opens at the end of July with The Pig at Harlyn Bay near Padstow. July is almost fully booked and August is getting busy!

COWORTH PARK

If space and tranquillity are what you’re after, Coworth Park’s reopening will be music to your ears. Stunning interiors, delicious food and even polo lessons on the menu. And for kids, there’s a whole house with seven rooms dedicated to younger family members plus a den for teens.

 

And if you want to go further afield, take a look at options abroad this summer.

PLASTIC FREE JULY

The planet is in crisis. If you want to make a difference, getting involved in Plastic Free July could kick start your eco-credentials.

Plastic Free July is a global movement that helps millions of people be part of the solution to plastic pollution – so we can have cleaner streets, oceans, and beautiful communities. The Plastic Free July campaign also provides resources and ideas to help you (and millions of others around the world) reduce single-use plastic waste every day at home, work, school, and even at your local café.

The easiest place to start is to make swaps for more environmentally friendly products.

  • Take a reusable cup to your local coffee house.
  • Buy plastic-free toothbrushes. Bamboo brushes are widely available now, but be wary if they still have plastic bristles. You’ll have to cut these off before recycling them. Also, look for a toothpaste that doesn’t have plastic balls in the paste and many health food shops will have plastic-free packaging options.
  • Sanitary items can now be plastic-free too. Amongst them Thinx makes washable underwear, Moon Cup is an alternative to sanitary towels and tampons and Eco Femme provides fabric towels.
  • Swap liquid soap in plastic bottles for bars of soap.
  • Buy in bulk from shops like Source or Planet Organic.
  • Try making your own beauty products to reduce the number of plastic containers you end up with in the bathroom. There are numerous online recipes and tutorials for soap, shampoo, shower gel, toothpaste, scrubs and lotions. Using simple, inexpensive ingredients, these products are better for the planet and reduce your use of plastic too.
  • Celebrate birthdays without plastic tat. Popular decorations that can be reused time and time again, include bunting, tassels, tissue pom poms, lanterns, fresh flowers, and more. And party bags no longer have to be filled with rubbish.
  • Stop using plastic wrap for food. Beeswax cloths from companies like The Beeswax Wrap Co are a great reusable alternative.
  • Teabags. Did you know that some contain plastic?! Ditch them and buy leaf tea and a teapot instead.

For more ideas on how to make a change head to our article about Going Green.

TEACHER GIFT IDEAS

The strangest summer term is drawing to a close. We’ve all learned a lot about teaching children this term so now’s the time to give thanks with our teacher gift ideas.

 

 

Lockdown has strengthened our respect for our kids’ teachers. FACT.  One key learning for us all over lockdown was that they really are super. From quickly adapting to digital classrooms, hours of marking all those assignments and remaining flexible at a time of uncertainty and helping to put their students (and parents) at ease. We owe a lot to our teachers for doing all they can to give our kids the best possible experience of learning from home. So here’s the City Kids roundup of teacher gift ideas which you could also access to give yourself a pat on the back!

PAPIER

 

A gift that’ll brighten up any teacher’s desk. We love that these Papier notebooks can be personalised PLUS  Papier is donating 50% of profits to AKT, the brilliant charity dedicated to providing safe homes and better futures for LGBTQ+ young people.

BLOOM & WILD

 

Flowers through the letterbox. Genius! We’ve got out eyes on the summer collections at Bloom & Wild.

BISCUITEERS

 

Hand-iced gifts from none other than Biscuiteers.

THORTFUL

 

Pop a card in the post along with a choice of chocs or something to add to their questionable sock collection! 

ARTISAN DU CHOCOLAT

 

Apple or chocolate? An easy decision to be the teacher’s pet. Dubbed “The Bently of chocolate” by Gordon Ramsay – it’s got to be good.

COTTON TWIST

 

 

A favourite for any personalised gifts, these tins are lovely for teachers and have room for a special message.

NOT ON THE HIGH STREET

 

And finally. Leave them with a fun task to do over the summer hols with this Rainbow Teacher Gift Bag With Seeds from Notonthehighstreet.

 

WEAN IN 15: CARIBBEAN SPICED CHICKEN AND SQUASH CURRY

Wean in 15 by Joe Wicks contains 100 recipes to take your child from milk to solids and beyond, including this recipe for Caribbean Spiced Chicken and Squash Curry.

 

When we spoke to Joe Wicks about Wean in 15 he told us his favourite recipe was Caribbean Spiced Chicken and Squash Curry. So here’s the recipe for you!

This is the tastiest curry in the whole book. Remember your baby’s appetite can vary day-to-day, so don’t be upset if they don’t eat all the food you offer them.

Makes 1 adult and 2 child portions

INGREDIENTS

1 ½ tbsp Caribbean curry powder or normal curry powder
4 skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cut into bite-sized pieces
1 tbsp coconut oil
1 onion, finely chopped
Sprig of thyme
1 bay leaf
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp minced ginger
½ tsp allspice powder
4 plum tomatoes, roughly chopped
1 x 400ml tin of coconut milk
400g frozen cubed butternut squash
Juice ½ lime
6 spring onions, roughly chopped
Small bunch of coriander, roughly chopped

METHOD

Sprinkle half the curry powder over the chicken, mix well and put to one side.

Melt the coconut oil in a large saucepan or casserole dish over a medium heat. Add the onion, thyme and bay leaf and fry for 2 minutes, stirring regularly. Add the garlic and ginger and continue cooking for a further minute.

Sprinkle in the remaining curry powder and the allspice and stir-fry for 1 minute. Add in the chicken and cook for a couple of minutes to seal. Add in the tomatoes and continue cooking until they start to break down.

Add the coconut milk and squash to the pan and continue cooking for 8-10 minutes or until the squash is cooked through. Stir in the lime juice, spring onions and coriander. Cook for a further 2-3 minutes to allow the flavours to meld together. Remove the bay leaf and thyme sprigs before serving. Serve with Rice.

Keeps for up to two days covered in the fridge.

MORE FROM JOE WICKS HERE

 

LAST-MINUTE FAMILY SUMMER HOLIDAYS

Where to book a last-minute family summer holiday

 

For some, the summer has come to soon to dismiss concerns about Covid-19 so a UK staycation is on the cards. For others, a trip abroad on a family summer holiday is an annual event not to be missed. European resorts are open so we thought we’d take a look at what’s on offer if you want to book a last-minute family summer holiday. ALWAYS check health guidelines and quarantine of the country you are going to and returning to.

 

Greece

A true gem waiting for you in Corfu this summer is Villa 1870, a historical five-bedroom, three-bathroom residence offering a private hideaway just 3km from Corfu Old Town. Sleeping up to 16 guests, Villa 1870 is ideal for families wanting a reunion trip following lockdown, whilst still enjoying privacy and isolation. On the property, you’ll find a heated outdoor seawater pool and games room as well as a private in-house chef (yes please!), daily housekeeping, access to their own chauffeur-driven mini-van, and local, insider knowledge from the owners. Corfu Old Town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, offers plenty of sightseeing even during the cooler months, so guests can spend their days discovering Venetian architecture, exploring quiet cobbled squares, and even joining the Corfiots swimming in the sea!
Nightly rates between €800 – €1,400, depending on the season. Rate includes accommodation, daily housekeeping, private mini-van airport transfers and to/from Corfu Town, baby equipment, laundry facilities and in-house private chef. Guests only pay for the ingredients of meals, not for the Chef service. For more information, please visit www.villa1870corfu.com

The photography from our next summer holiday destination is enough to get you to book your flight. Sani Resort is open from July and with it their 1,000 acre ecological reserve with 7km of unspoiled and private sandy beaches leading to the ocean, spacious rooms and suites with private terraces, gardens and pools. From beach yoga, windsurfing and paddleboarding, to more educational activities such as beekeeping and bird watching in the Sani Wetlands, there’s something for every family at Sani Resort.
Prices at Porto Sani in a Suite with Terrace or Balcony start from €180 per night, on a half-board basis. For more information, visit www.saniresort.gr

Spread across 22 acres of landscaped gardens, the luxury all-inclusive Ikos Olivia offers a range of outdoor activities to suit the whole family during their summer holiday. There are complimentary clubs for kids and teens aged 4 – 17, operated according to strict British OFSTED standards. Heros Crèche with professional childcare crèche services for children up to the age of 4 is also available at an extra cost. After a day filled with activities, families can enjoy Michelin starred cuisine. The resort’s spacious Deluxe Collection suites and bungalows (above) offer the ultimate privacy for families, including one- and two-bedroom suites. 
Ikos Olivia will reopen on 1st July with enhanced health & safety measures as part of Ikos Resort’s new Infinite Care Protocol: https://ikosresorts.com/the-ikos-world-of-safety-freedom

France

Located off the western coast of France, the Ile de Ré couldn’t feel further from our current surroundings in the UK. With its picturesque villages, whitewashed streets, long stretches of sandy beaches and cycle paths winding through cornfields and vineyards, the Ile de Ré is a picture-perfect destination for a post-lockdown getaway with the family. Stay at the idyllic Villa Clarisse, nestled down a quiet cobbled street off Saint-Martin-de-Ré’s harbour, and enjoy a laid-back retreat where the staff are on hand to arrange picnics, bicycle hire and day trips. There’s a lovely outdoor heated pool and sandpit in the walled garden – the property has a relaxed feel which is great for families after months in lockdown together. The summer months see Parisian families flock there too!
Nightly rates at Villa Clarisse start from €290 per night in a Premium Room (room-only). For further information and reservations, please visit www.villa-clarisse.com or call +33 546 684 300.

Following its annual closure and full redevelopment, the five-star Hotel Crillon le Brave is set to re-open its doors to guests on 2nd July. Nestled within a village eponymous of the Vaucluse region, the hotel offers families the chance to explore the picture-perfect Provençal countryside and quaint, historical nearby towns. Children can visit old Roman castles while parents enjoy a glass of rose from the neighbouring vineyards.  Crillon Le Brave is a gateway of adventure where children will discover hidden doorways along the garden walls and can cool down in the hotel pool when the excitement of running around has tired them out. This timeless hideaway combines chic design, complete privacy and attentive but discreet service, offering the ultimate French getaway for families to enjoy a quieter pace of life. 
Nightly rates at Hotel Crillon Le Brave start from 350 Euros on a bed & breakfast basis. For reservations and information visit www.crillonlebrave.com.

Italy

Image: Antonio Furigno

A winter favourite of City Kids, Courmayeur Mont Blanc, is also a summer playground. It’s situated on the Italian side of Mont Blanc with car-free cobbled streets, family-run hotels, charming atmosphere, short transfer times and the superb offering of hiking, biking and fresh air. Food is gourmet standard, and hands up if your child doesn’t like pizza or pasta. No, we thought not. Head to the Skyway for a unique view of Mont Blanc and the valley below or try white water rafting, ice skating, indoor climbing, tennis, table tennis, golf and 5-a-side football.
For more information on Courmayeur Mont Blanc visit: https://www.courmayeurmontblanc.it/en. Images: Courmayeur Mont Blanc.

Villa Le Fauci is a traditional and historic 19th-century Tuscan farmhouse located between coastal Livorno and fashionable Florence. It’s quiet and secluded and ideal for families looking to escape the crowds. Surrounded by flora and fauna, it is perfect for exploring with the kids, and families may even spot some of the wildlife that is common in the area, such as wild boar, foxes and deer. It has plenty of outside space, a full-size pool and a thoughtful mini pool for little ones. A converted roof terrace with 360° panoramic views of the hilly landscape, is a great place for parents to end the day with a glass of wine in hand. The villa sleeps eleven guests in four bedrooms.
Rates from £3,858 for a seven-night stay. To book, visit www.oliverstravels.com or call  0800 133 7999.

Portugal

If you’re in need of a health MOT but the family deserve a holiday too why not combine the two at this spa hotel which also happens to be a superb beach resort in The Algarve. With a new 7 night Family Wellness Package, Vilalara Longevity Thalassa & Medical Spa is the ultimate family-friendly wellness destination. Families can enjoy a variety of activities together including yoga, fitness and healthy cooking sessions. It has one of the best Thalassotherapy Centres in the world set within 11 hectares of land with five outdoor pools of fresh or seawater, four tennis courts and two excellent restaurants providing quality healthy cuisine. There’s also a superb Kids Club and a range of options for kids to stay healthy and active alongside their parents.

Vilalara Longevity Thalassa & Medical Spa (longevityvilalara.com, reservations@longevity.pt, +351 967 108 244) offers the 7-night Family Wellness Package from €2,347 / £2,028 based on two adults and one child staying in a Junior Suite Garden View and from €3,422 / £2,957 for a family of two adults and two children. 

Overlooking the Atlantic Ocean on the Vale Covo cliffside, the family-friendly five-star Tivoli Carvoeiro Algarve Resort offers coastal bliss for all the family just a 10-minute walk from the small fishing village of Carvoeiro. As well as the iconic circular swimming pool and rooftop bar, the spacious hotel also offers three restaurants, a Tivoli Spa and easy access to outdoor a multitude of fun, family activities, like the Seven Hanging Valleys Trail, that make the most of the beautiful location.
Nightly rates at Tivoli Carvoeiro Algarve Resort start from 220 EUR. 

 

Spain

With a spectacular setting in the rolling hills of Andalusia overlooking Spain’s southern coastline, the independently-owned Finca Cortesin is the epitome of refined, yet relaxed Mediterranean living. The resort comprises an award-winning 67-suite hotel; one of the best championship golf courses in the world; an outstanding spa and sports facilities; some of the best Japanese raw cuisine outside of Japan; exclusive shopping area and a Beach Club, in addition to stunning five-bedroom villas that are perfect for families. The villas are located at the heart of Finca Cortesin, offering the utmost privacy from the main resort and offer unsurpassed views of the Sierra Bermeja mountain range, the golf course and the Mediterranean Sea. These all en-suite residences have been built on spacious individual plots of up to 2,200m2 – perfect for multi-generational families or groups of friends seeking more space.
Nightly rates in the 5-bedroom Green 10 villas start from €3,467 (currently approx. £3,057). www.fincacortesin.com

Turkey

Hillside Beach Club in Fethiye, Turkey, is a luxury hideaway perfect for family summer holidays. It has extensive outdoor space, including three stunning beaches and a beautiful private bay. Children and adults looking for activities and adventure are spoilt for choice, with water sports galore and activities from robot building to football competitions and DJ masterclasses. Hike through history and explore nearby ancient historical sites including the deserted village of Kayakoy, or take to the water and explore the coast on a sunset boat tour discovering 12 magical islands speckled across the Turkish coastline. 
Nightly rates start from £250 based from on two people sharing a standard room on a full board plus* basis. 

 

BEST FAMILY TAKEAWAY PICNICS

Top 10 Ready-Made Picnics for Families

Sun’s out, guns out, but more importantly, it’s time for the best family takeaway picnics! Luckily, one of our fave contributors, Tiny Table, has put together a fantastic list of ready-made picnics for families to enjoy.

 


LUXE LUNCHES: PIQUE
Born out of Battersea, Pique’s luxury handmade picnics are vast in choice and ideal for families looking to really roll out the red picnic blanket. Birthday Breakfast hampers come complete with brunch essentials: banana and dark chocolate loaf with birthday candles, party hats, flowers and bubbles (for the big kids!). The natty named Leonardo de Veggie box is packed with veggie delights and the full monty is called The Pique-Nique. Chorizo, apricot and thyme sausage rolls, Lemony hummus and crudités, charcuterie, brie, pickles & chutney, orzo pasta salad, baguettes, brownies and more. Order with 48 hours notice and their picnic boxes will arrive to your door with disposable, compostable and plastic-free packaging.
ORDER HERE

THE DELI DELIGHT: MELROSE AND MORGAN
Melrose And Morgan are always our first stop for deli delights in Primrose Hill and Hampstead Village. From the Park to the Heath, their summer picnic hampers scale up from two to six, making them the perfect for family feasts in the sun. The Meadow is ideal for a family of four and packed with divine delights – salad, veggie or meat scotch eggs, cheddar cheese, hummus and spelt crackers, truffle crisps, broad beans, olives, feta stuffed peppers, cherry tomatoes, a punnet of strawberries and sinfully gooey chocolate brownies.
ORDER HERE


FULL ON FAMILY FEASTING: JIMMY’S POP UP
We waxed lyrical about their BBQ hampers and Jimmy’s Pop Up new picnic box is equally as impressive. Serving up to four, this hamper is just the ticket if you’re looking for a really special family alfresco feast. The best of British picnic fare, artisan cheese and meats sit nestled next to giant sausage rolls, handmade pork pies, homemade chutney, pickles, smoked salmon and for pud – strawberries and cream. Grown-ups can toast all their hard work during lockdown with a bottle of red, white or rose. Get ordering as Jimmy’s picnic box is set to be a popular one!
ORDER HERE

SUNDAY LUNCH: THE EMPRESS
East London gastropub The Empress is keeping to tradition despite recent events. Their takeaway Sunday roasts are pretty special and ideal for weekend picnicking. Their classic Empress Sunday Roast comes served with Yorkshire pudding, braised red cabbage, roast carrots & parsnips, spring greens & roast potatoes. So what will it be roast beef, pork belly or a vegan beetroot and nut roast? If you can squeeze room in for pudding there’s an unctuous sticky toffee pud and apricot Bakewell tart, both served with clotted cream. Order in advance to avoid disappointment!
ORDER HERE


PIES, PASTRIES & PICNICS: POPHAMS
We’re partial to their pastries, so when Pophams announced their picnic kits we jumped for joy…and in the nick of time for National Picnic Week. The ideal day-date treat for if you’ve snatched a few hours away from the kids whilst they’re at school, Pophams hamper is overflowing with deliciousness – root vegetables pithivier, olives, build your own porchetta focaccia sarnie, herby Isle of Wight Tomato salad, PB & J bread pudding sando, Pophams Eccles cakes with Mrs Kirkham’s Lancashire cheese and more. A lush lunch in the sunshine if we ever did see! Nip over to pophamsbakery.com to order your picnic
ORDER HERE

VEGAN PICNIC PICK: PETERSHAM NURSERIES
Located in an area of outstanding natural beauty only moments away
from the River Thames and on the doorstep of Richmond Park, Petersham Nurseries are serving up one heavenly park-ready vegan picnic. Priced at £40 for two (double for a family of four) the dishes are as mouthwatering as their restaurant fare. Vivid green pea hummus, farro and pesto salad, mushroom, chard and onion filo start, a moreish focaccia and English strawberries with mint sugar and Amalfi lemon. Orders for collection from Petersham Nurseries Richmond, Thursday – Sunday from 11.30am to 4.30pm. Order by 4pm for next day collection.
ORDER HERE

MUMS THAT BRUNCH: THE FARMER’S MISTRESS
If you’re bringing up your brood in South London, you’ll be familiar with The Farmer’s Mistress and their brilliant brunches. Their brand new Farmer’s Mistress Picnic box is not only environmentally friendly in a biodegradable box but is perfect for mums lunch dates on Clapham Common. With mini brioche aplenty tuck into non-Dairy cream cheese, balsamic onion, roasted pepper, wild garlic pesto, prawn, crème fraiche, avo, baby gem and chicken, smoked bacon. and sun-dried tomato. Caramelised apple & apricot sausage roll, date ketchup, scotch eggs and mustard mayo and wholewheat fusilli pesto pasta salad. Sweet endings? The salted caramel fudge brownie & millionaire shortbread bites are EPIC!
ORDER HERE

MEAT FEAST: FIELD & FLOWER
Award-winning online butcher Field & Flower have been keeping the country fed on the finest meat, poultry and fish during lockdown with their amazing array of delivery boxes. As part of their BBQ box range, their Summer Picnic BBQ box comes primed with thick-cut ham, artisan scotch eggs and British charcuterie alongside a hefty hunk of Barber’s Haystack Cheddar Cheese and pickles galore. With 32 whopping servings, this box will generously feed 3-4 people at least and comes in under £50. A top picnic pic for hungry families.
ORDER HERE

ICE CREAM DREAM: CHIN CHIN LABS
Kids picnics at home call for one thing – ice cream! Those clever chaps at Chin Chin Labs have gone all out this summer with their brand new Ice Cream in the Post! Using liquid nitrogen means their ice cream stays colder for longer so they can post freshly churned & hand-packed nitro ice cream straight from Chin Chin’s Soho kitchen to your front door! Each ice cream box includes one tub of Burnt Butter Caramel, one tub of Tonka Bean and one tub of Strawberry Milk ice cream. Please note that only grown-ups can handle the unpacking due to the dry ice in the box.
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ALFRESCO AFTERNOON TEA: HAM YARD HOTEL
Firmdale Hotel’s Ham Yard Hotel may still be closed but they’ve kept their kitchen open to bring us one sweet treat – afternoon tea boxes. With delivery to most postcodes across London, Ham Yard Hotel have boxed up their favourite treats including delicious finger sandwiches, sumptuous savouries like tomato arancini and sausage rolls, scones with clotted cream and preserves and our mouth-watering cakes, including lemon drizzle and raspberry Bakewell tart. Place your order prior to midday on Thursday for a choice of Friday, Saturday or Sunday delivery.
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Now you’ve got the best takeaway picnic, time to choose the park. Our best London Parks for Picnics guide should help!

 

You can find more fantastic family-friendly foodie recommendations from the Tiny Table website and over on Instagram.