Entertaining the grandchildren

Having just spent an un-seasonally cold and wet week looking after our two grand daughters aged 9 and 7, all plans for days on the beach and picnics went out the window. So if you are on grandparent duty this summer here are a few suggestions.


London provided a brilliant day out. Top of the bill one day was a walk over Tower Bridge and a visit to see the Crown Jewels. Had the children been a bit older we could have spent longer there, but in any event it provided a good 2-3 hours entertainment before hunger took over and attention spans waned! We booked on line but the queues to buy tickets on the day were minimal and there is no timed entry. The Crown Jewels is brilliantly organised and each child gets an activity and information book in which to tick off things they have spotted. Throw in the Princes in the Tower story and a chat with a friendly Beefeater and it is really good value. Then you can jump on one of the River Boats down to Greenwich North ( children travel free) and take the cable car from the O2 over the Thames and return to central London by DLR ( free again for kids). Basically children under 15 travel everywhere ( except on the cable car) for £1, which includes BR into London too.

Our other day out in London was to see the newly opened Shrek World of Adventures on the South Bank. It opened in July 2015 and was excellent value and great fun. It is essential to book and entry is in timed groups of about 20 people, so your experience in uncrowded and the kids get to see everything. We “flew” on a bus to Far Away Land where we met the film’s characters. It was a huge success for us as well as the children.

Then on to games, essential on rainy days and to divert from the desire to watch TV – how do you choose? Well, votes for the week’s favourite games go to:

“Quirkle”,which was a sort of cross between dominoes and scrabbleQuirkle

What a P“What a Performance” where each player drew cards and had to perform an action, sound, etc and move around a board and

“Clear Round”, a game about building a riding stables.

Finally books for those bed time stories, the “Puppy Academy” series by Gill Lewis is perfect for the 6+ age group, and David Walliams books – we read the Demon Dentist – was much enjoyed by the 9 year old.Demon DPuppy