If you have a day out, a class or a product or service for families that you would like Mumbler to review or get a local mum to review, please contact us here.

Puddle Ducks Review

Local mum Sara and her toddler sent in this review about Puddle Ducks –

“Florence has been attending Puddle Ducks for over a year now. She started in Splashers now she is in Kickers. We attend on a Tuesday morning at Everlast Gym Hull. The sessions are 30 minutes long.

Florence absolutely loves it. She has a huge amount of confidence in the water since doing her classes with Emma. She has learnt so much including water safety skills. They sing songs, sing nursery rhymes, do lots of splashing, play with toys, swim on their backs, swim under water, blow bubbles and jump in! They learn so much every lesson and have so much fun doing it!

Emma is fantastic not only with the children, but with the parents too. I am a confident swimmer but I was not so confident been in the water with Florence. Emma was very supportive, she never pushed me into doing anything I didn’t want to do. She let me take as much time as I needed. Emma ensures both the adult and child are having fun and learning.

Florence absolutely loves water, she is a fantastic little swimmer. When I take her swimming outside of her Puddle Duck lessons she always wants to do the things we do in her lessons such as blowing bubbles, she loves them that much. I recommend Puddle Ducks to everyone!

Find the latest information about this class and how to book on Mumbler here.

Reading Fairy Review

Local mum Sara and her toddler sent in this review about Reading Fairy….

“Reading Fairy is a fantastic new class to Hull. We have been attending since the middle of September on a Tuesday afternoon. Florence started in Toddler Tales then turned two, she is now in Story Stars.

The classes are filled with songs, stories, nursery rhymes, reading books, bubbles, learning about phonics and other activities (such as colouring and painting). Florence loves this class. It is very different from any class we have done previously. Her speaking has really developed since going to Reading Fairy. The learning can then continue at home until the next class.

Emma is a fantastic teacher, she really encourages the children in a very positive way. The children are very engaged in what Emma says. She spends time talking to each child in the class. I definitely recommend everyone takes their child to a Reading Fairy class.

Monday morning classes are at Crafty Cat Cafe, Monday afternoon classes are at Elloughton Village Hall. Tuesday afternoon classes are in Victoria Dock Hall and Wednesday afternoon classes are at Daydream Baby. You can book a term or Pay as You Go.”

Find the latest information about this class and how to book on Mumbler here.


Mumbler Reviews: Cycling at Dalby

We started our October half term holiday with a visit to Dalby Forest and had an amazing time together cycling around the trails and tracks. Autumn is an ideal time to visit this stunning forest.

It’s years since I’ve been to Dalby Forest and we’ve only been to do some short walks and use the play area in the past. My children are now a good age to do a good length bike ride (age 9 and 12) so we decided it was time to go and try cycling around the forest.


The first thing was actually getting bikes to ride. You need a good mountain bike to cycle on the trails, you can take your own if you have one and a way to get it there. I have a trusty old road bike with thin tyres and my kids have basic bikes so we decided to hire some proper mountain bikes when we arrived from the Dalby Forest Cycle Hub. The cycle centre is located opposite the main Dalby Forest car park so easy to find.


The staff were amazing, really helpful and very knowledgable. They got each of us a bike that was the right size, helped adjust our seats and showed us how to use them. You can book bikes in advance on their website and then on the day you just leave some ID such as bank card or car keys and off you go. The bikes were fantastic quality, really easy to ride and they handled the muddy tracks very well. The staff recommended some routes to try based on our ability and experience (limited!), and after a quick practice around the courtyard we were off.


The main tracks are gravel and easy riding for all abilities and ages. They are colour coded so we started off on greens (easiest) and headed for a blue later on (next level up!). We set off down the first trail then spotted a small area in the hillside and forest where you could practice on the harder trails and obstacles so we stopped to try that out (the kids were more successful at this than I was!). Our map reading skills were not great and we didn’t follow the signs very well so we ended up going on a big loop around the forest, however it ended up being a beautiful route and just the right length and challenge level for us. There were some pretty steep hills to climb and some great long downhills to coast down.


The views were incredible. I think Autumn must be the best time to visit, the leaves were all starting to turn and the variety of colours across the landscape looked stunning. It wasn’t too cold, although we had put on a lot of layers and taken gloves. We cycled for around 2 hours as a family, then me and my daughter went to the courtyard cafe for a hot chocolate and cake while my husband and son tried a few harder red routes.


We then spent a short time in the play area and visitor centre (which is just the opposite side of the car park to the cycle centre). I thought the play area was really good with great equipment and activities, the stream looked great for paddling in in warmer weather too. There was an extra trail to do for Halloween around the play area and there are often extra activities in the school holidays running from the visitor centre.


By the end of the afternoon we were very muddy and tired but we’d had a fantastic time together. We left our very muddy bikes back at the cycle centre and the team took care of it cleaning them while we got changed into clean clothes for the drive home. If you do take your own bikes there is a bike washing station behind the centre that you can use too. If you liked the bike you hired can even buy it! Guess what’s now gone on my daughters Christmas list?!

My top tips for Autumn cycling are to take a spare change of clothes and be prepared to get muddy! Wear plenty of layers that you can take off as you get warm on the hill climbs. We took a small rucksack with water and a few snacks, we did need a few haribo to get my youngest up the longer hills!


If you want to try cycling in the forest but don’t have the gear or a car rack to take bikes with you, the Dalby Forest Cycle Centre is an ideal place to hire bikes. It was super easy and the staff were really helpful. If you can take your own bikes it’s just £10 for the day to park and you can go off exploring for as long as you like. Cycling is a fantastic family activity to do together, I feel very lucky we have this forest and facilities not too far away. We’re already planning our next family bike ride and will definitely be back to this amazing forest again!

Visit the Dalby Forest Cycle Hub website here for more info and bookings for bike hire.

Visit the Dalby Forest website here for more information about the forest and what’s on.

Low Dalby , Thornton-Le-Dale, Pickering. Sat Nav Postcode: YO18 7LT.


For more ideas of things to do in the North York Moors visit the North Yorkshire Moors National Park website here.

visit the north yorkshire moors this autumn

Mumbler Reviews: Tots Play Hull

Mumbler reviewer Ellie and baby Jude have been out to try Tots Play Hull, here’s how they found it….

I attended two of the Tots Play ‘Discovery Tots’ sessions with my 5 month old baby boy. Straight away Angharad and the other parents were all extremely welcoming and, as this was my first baby group, it completely put me at ease.

The class started with an introduction to all of the children which my little boy absolutely loved. Angharad’s memory is fantastic; she knew all of the babies names without having to be reminded and sang a welcome song to each of them. We then did different little exercises to songs, allowing for a warm up to get the little ones (and us!) ready for the morning activities. This included learning some sign language and different ways of communicating with our babies.

Activities that followed included parachute play, bubbles, different sensory stations and even messy play for those that were brave enough to get stuck in! Here’s Jude enjoying every minute.

The class was extremely relaxed, with Angharad expressing multiple times to let our little ones lead the way. If they didn’t like a certain activity, we didn’t have to do it. If they needed to sleep or feed, you feel comfortable enough to tend to your baby whilst others continue to join in. We really were all in the same boat due to the age group and it was fantastic to feel no pressure. I believe my little boy thrived because of this environment.

I would recommend Discovery Tots to any mums looking for a relaxed yet fun filled environment to take your little ones to. We have taken things from this session, such as different signs and activities, that we will continue to use at home to aid his development.


Tots Play have a range of classes suitable from birth to age 3. You can find them on Wednesdays at Wyke Rugby Clubhouse, Bricknell Playing Fields, Cropton Road, HU5 4LN and on Thursdays at St Andrews Community Centre, Ennerdale, HU7 6EA. Check out their latest timetable and full class info on Mumbler here.

Mumbler Reviews: Camp Bestival Shropshire

Camp Bestival is a family festival; each Summer there is one in Dorset and Shropshire. As a family we have never been camping and have never been to a festival, so we decided that it was time to try out both and we headed down to Camp Bestival Shropshire in August!

It’s set in the beautiful grounds of Westin Park, close to Wolverhampton, and took us about 2.5 hours to drive down from Hull. The festival runs Thursday to Sunday night, you can just get a day ticket or you can get a camping ticket and stay as long as you like. We were in Camping Plus, this meant you get an allocated pitch (great if you want to go with other families and can pick pitches together), there was also a block of flushing toilets and a block of showers in that area. Standard camping you just arrive and choose where to pitch your tent in the field you have been allocated.

Not being campers, we borrowed a variety of equipment from some very kind friends and family. In hindsight we really did need a bigger tent! We had two 2-man tents for the four of us which didn’t leave much space for anything else, especially after it had rained and we had a lot of wet stuff! Some people had brought some very impressive, huge tents which we had tent-envy over. We arrived Friday morning, parked the car and then walked into the camping fields carrying our camping gear. We found our pitch and put up our tents, and then went straight into the festival main arena to explore. We went with another family which helped as we could share some of the camping equipment and we could split up to see and do different parts of the festival that best suited the ages of our children.

There was so much to see and do in the arena and we didn’t get around all of it during the 3 days we were at Bestival. There was a main stage with the headline acts on and a second ‘big top’ tent for other acts, plus lots of other smaller tents and stages. Everywhere we turned there was something to listen to or watch. There was also a fairground and loads of kids activities, from all types of crafts to tree climbing and building a playground. The site has a huge lake within it and you could also do activities on the water, including wild swimming. There was even a spa!

Everything is aimed at families and so much thought and planning has clearly gone in to making it the best experience possible for families of all ages. There were activities and acts to suit all age children, from babies to teens. My children are 9 and 12 and I thought they were a really good age to get the most out of it all, from the activities and shows as well as the bands and DJs that played into the evening (they finished around 11pm so we almost stayed up for all of it but not quite!).

The staff were outstanding, with people everywhere ready to help. On one hot afternoon we’d got to the front of the main stage to dance and the security staff at the front were passing cups of water out to all children. There was a welfare tent who were helping with everything from giving out sun cream to helping me get glitter out of my daughters eye! They also had some ear defenders which we bought as my daughter doesn’t like loud noises (it wasn’t too loud at all but she won’t go near a hand dryer so we really should have thought about ear defenders before we went!). There was a first aid tent and also a neurodiverse tent where children who found any of it overwhelming could go and relax in the calming, quiet space.

All of the music, shows and acts are within the ticket price. The CBeebies tent was also free to meet and great some of the characters and stars of their shows. We also did family yoga, some crafts and the roller disco free of charge. There was a charge for some activities and for the fairground rides but we didn’t spend much. We saw some fantastic bands and acts, and left quite literally blown away by what we had experienced as a family. Our highlights were dancing along to Rudimental, Sara Cox and Groove Armada on the main stage, laughing along to Dick and Dom’s 90’s disco, and just hanging out in the sunshine eating churros soaking up the atmosphere.

Both of my children loved the festival, and the camping experience. We camped Friday and Saturday night, for me 2 nights was enough (I am not good on little sleep!) but my husband and son would have happily stayed for the full 4 nights. The toilets were much better than I had anticipated, the portaloos in the main arena were mostly really clean, and were being cleaned regularly. I didn’t queue for a shower (I had taken baby wipes!) but my son and husband did and said they were really good.

On the Sunday morning it was the women’s football final so that was shown on the main stage and we stayed to watch that before packing up and heading home. I am so pleased we went, it was our first festival and camping trip but it certainly won’t be our last. My 12 year old is still saying its the best thing he has ever been to and has told us that we are definitely going again next year!

Here are some of my top tips if you are thinking of going next year:

  • There were a lot of food and drink stands and every type of street food you could imagine, but some did have queues at peak times so taking some food of your own is a good idea. We borrowed a camping stove and table and it was the best thing we took, it meant we could make a coffee and have super-noodles for tea! We also took a big cool box which kept pasta pots and pre-packed sandwiches good to use for the 2 days. We did try some of the food in the arena but to keep costs down it’s a good idea to take some of your own.
  • There is no glass allowed on site, so if you want to take your own alcohol make sure its cans (I took some G&T cans!). You can buy a re-usable Bestival cup at the bar and each time you take it back to refill there is a discount on the price of the drink.
  • It is a long walk from the car park to the pitches and we had to carry everything so packing light is needed! A lot of people had camping trolleys to pull items in, we are definitely investing in one of those for next time.
  • Take a good size, comfortable rucksack to use during the day. It was quite a walk from the campsite to the arena so we stayed in for the full day – needing everything from water and snacks to sun hats and wet jackets (and my cans of G&T!).
  • Be prepared for all weathers, it is Britain! We had lots of rain on the first evening/night and then scorching sun, so do take wet jackets that can roll up easily into rucksacks, as well as sun cream and caps.
  • Take welly boots or walking boots. After the rain had passed and even with sunshine the next day it was still muddy and slippy in parts, it is not a place for strappy sandals!
  • Download the festival app – it has a live timetable of which acts were on which stages so you could plan your day.

Camp Bestival will return to Shropshire next year, 15th-18th August 2024, early bird tickets go on sale soon so if you fancy going check out their website here.




NB For the purpose of this review tickets were gifted free of charge by Camp Bestival Shropshire, but the opinions are all my own.

Summer in York with Visit York

This is a sponsored blog post from Visit York. Content kindly provided by York Mumbler.


York is a fantastic place to visit for families this Summer, the city offers so much for kids.. check out our ideas for things to do here…

Family selfie york If you’re going to visit York this summer, as a local or a tourist, we hope that this blog is going to be useful as we’ve picked out & visited 5 fantastic family friendly attractions in York and have all the info here!

Getting in to York

Before you set off it’s a good idea to plan how you’re going to enter the city – of course there is parking available but it can be limited (and a little expensive!) so we find the easiest way is by bus… plus the kids love it and it makes it part of the trip! You can make your journey into the city hassle-free by taking advantage of York Park & Ride. With free parking available at all sites, it’s a convenient and cost-effective option. What’s even better, an Adult Return ticket costs just £3.60, and up to three children can travel for free! We love the app – Did you know you can  track your bus in real-time so you know exactly when your service will arrive? Super helpful.


1. York Minster

It was a very sunny and very busy day in July when we visited York Minster. The tranquility we experienced throughout our visit was just the tonic. Before we entered the building, we paused for a gorgeously relaxed picnic lunch in the brand new park space which is directly in front of the new refectory. (there are also parks on college green and the larger Deans Park, all surrounding the Minster)

We grabbed a simple picnic in town – many of the fab surrounding independent cafes offer a take out service including the refectory itself.  After the buzz of the streets – the kids and I really enjoyed the relaxation and simplicity of the picnic in the park – they could burn off excess energy with their cartwheels and chasing while I took a moment of calm and pause. I honestly don’t believe there is a better view in the whole of York than in that garden.

On entering the Minster itself – the calm continued. I must admit I haven’t been for a number of years and I’d forgotten just what a haven this place is. For adult York residents it’s completely free to enter the building and for children (from anywhere) it’s also free!

The Minster has, for many years, catered very well for children with their free explorer backpacks – complete with magnifying glass, binoculars and map as well as other things – we also used one of the sensory backpacks which are perfect for children with additional needs – lots of sensory aids. My girls loved them!

New additions for the summer are the 2 trails – the light trail and the maths trail. We did the maths one which both of my girls really enjoyed… it was all around shapes, counting, observations etc. so very accessible for all ages – certainly didn’t feel like homework and it engaged them really well with a bit about the structure and the history of York Minster.

We continued to explore the whole building including the chapter house, undercroft (where the girls could dress up and hang out with the corgi!) and for the first time – we were all able to go up to the top of the Minster. It’s an additional cost but for the views from the top it’s well worth it – we even spotted the White Horse from the top!)

We spent about 2 and a half hours in there – which I wasn’t expecting! And I’ll certainly be going back again this year. They are also doing a number of events over summer including Three inch fools and Luna Cinema. Find out more about them at the York Minster Website.

💜 Our Mini Mumbler review of York Minster… 

“I really enjoyed going to the Minster, there were many activities to get involved with. The maths quest was fun and challenging, I think that it covered most types of maths like shapes, patterns and things like that. When we went to the top of the Minster, we saw an amazing view of the whole of York. To get there, we climbed 270 stairs until we reached the top. It was fun because you were exercising for a beautiful reward.”  Edith, age 10.

ℹ️ More information about York Minster

👩‍💻 Find out more on the York Minster website.
💷  Free if York resident with proof of address.  To climb the tower you must be aged 8+ and charges apply (£22 per adult/£6 per child)
📅 Mon to Sat: 9.30am – 4pm & Sun: 12.45pm – 3.15pm
📍 York Minster, Deangate, York, YO1 7HH

Summer at the National Railway Museum

The National Railways Museum was a very frequently visited attraction for us when the girls were pre-school age.. but I must admit we hadn’t been for a while. When the opportunity came up to visit again we couldn’t wait – and this time we invited our family engineer – Grandad!

The girls are at such a good age to really take in and learn all there is to learn here now – so very much enjoyed grandad explaining to them all about how the steam engine worked – it was great to see an exposed train so that they could see all the different parts and put together how it works.. we all learned a lot!

Their favourite area as kids was the model railway – and they loved viewing that again with a lovely excitement when they saw the model train chugging along in the miniature landscape. There is a big room with every item of railway signage, memorabilia and ornament you can imagine. Meg (8) in particular loved doing the free object hunts where you can tick off items that you find along the way.

A new one for us this year was the Flying Scotsman VR experience which was an additional cost but VERY much worth it. We put on our headsets and could see the story for Flying Scotsman come to life around us, feel the heat of the engine and feel the rumble of the loco as it comes into a station. A truly immersive experience that the girls (and I!) will remember for a long time.

Even more exciting and coming this summer is the BRAND NEW Wonderlab – it will be open from 27th July it is a ground-breaking interactive gallery exploring the how, what and why that underpin the creation of the railways with 18 interactive experiences based around engineering. You can pre-book tickets for that now here

💜 Our Mini Mumbler review of the National Railway Museum… 

“I loved going to the railway museum with my sister, mum and grandad. I loved seeing the pipes inside the steam train and my grandad explained how it all worked. I also did the VR where we got to go through a train engine and see all of the parts. We felt like we were riding on the train and could see a plane flying next to us. I loved going on that. In another room there was mini books that you could fill in and tick things that you could find in a room full of train things. I found them all! It was one of my favourite days”  Megan, age 8.

ℹ️ More information about the National Railway Museum

👩‍💻 Find out more on the National Railway Musuem website.
💷  Main Musuem: Free, pre-book a ticket online.
Wonderlab: The Bramall Gallery: £9 per adult/ £7.20 per child/under 3s free. If you have a YO postcode your ticket will be upgraded for free to an annual pass (offer available until 3 Sep 2023). Book tickets for Wonderlab: The Bramall Gallery here.
Flying Scotsman VR experience: £7 per person. Book tickets here.
📅 Open seven days a week, 10.00–17.00. Last admission is at 16.30.
📍 Leeman Road,  York, YO26 4XJ

Summer at The York Dungeon

The York Dungeons is a terrifying experience – in all the best ways!

It is no exaggeration to say that my eldest daughter has been bugging me to go to York Dungeons for the last 2 years! Ever since I took her cousins when they were 8 – she has wanted to go. The age recommendation for this is 8+ and there is good reason why… there are times when it is pitch black, some very scary themes (I think the witch show is the most terrifying) so it’s not for the faint hearted. It really depends on your child but for mine, it was a little too scary for my 8 year old but PERFECT for my 10 year old. The actors never touch you and as well as the scares, there are some hilarious gags along the way too.

The experience lasts 75 minutes in total and it’s totally immersive. There are different 10 shows and you’re guided through the dungeons through 2,000 years of York’s most haunted history!

This summer at The York Dungeon you will find yourself in 1455, in the midst of The Wars of the Roses. The French Queen Margaret of Anjou is ruling in place of her King and the country is at Civil War – the Yorkists and the Lancastrians are at arms to see who the rightful King should be!

You can also prepare to meet the infamous faces of York’s dark past including notorious witch Isabella Billington, Guy Fawkes – as although he was caught underneath the Houses of Parliament, his story began in York. Finally, you will face the infamous highwayman – Dick Turpin. Step inside the darkened carriage and be sure to hold on to your valuables

💜 Our Mini Mumbler review of The York Dungeon… 

“I went to the York Dungeons, it was SO fun! I was really scared. You can go from age 5 but it’s recommended 8+ and I can see why. Definitely not for people who get scared easily (including my sister and daddy) I really loved the execution, It feels like you get real blood splattered  on you. When it was the Dick turpin show, the carriage actually moved. That was REALLY cool. You could hear him walking on the roof when he was coming to rob us. We got some funny photographs at the end which I really liked. I got a squished coin for my collection too. ”  Edith, age 10.

ℹ️ More information about The York Dungeon 

👩‍💻 Summer Show: Rotten Royals: Will you survive the Palace Dungeon? runs from 1 July – 4 Sept and is included with your admission ticket. Find out more on The York Dungeon website.
💷 Suitable for families with children aged 8+ (under 5s not permitted). Tickets from £21 per adult/from £17 per child (8+)
📅 Open seven days a week, 10am – 5pm during the school holidays
📍 12 Clifford Street, York, YO1 9RD

Summer with City Cruises York

There are a few ways to enjoy cruising down the Ouse, including a self drive boat where up to 8 people from your friends and family can drive – but we tried out the BRAND NEW Fish & Chips Cruises and we loved it!

Sailing on a Wednesday and Friday evening, these cruises last 90 minutes and we got the benefit of having tea on board, courtesy of Mr Chippy, as well as enjoying a sightseeing cruise through the historic city and down to Bishopthorpe Palace.

The girls were super excited to hop aboard.. the tables were all set with gingham table cloths in the indoor dining room and we all had a big window view, We ordered drinks from the well stocked bar and were served our fish & chips straight away (yummy!) Very generous portions and we’d ordered some extra mushy peas which finished it off very nicely!

The captain was super friendly gave us some very fascinating commentary along the way, including lots of historical facts about the river and City of York as well as the bridges that we passed under along the way.

We were free to flow from the dining room to up on the top deck, where we could enjoy the signs even better.

I always think that the cruise is one of the most relaxing ways to enjoy our City – the fish and chips (and Ice-cream available to purchase!) made it even more special.

Different options for families, Self-Drive, Sightseeing, Fish & Chips Cruises.

Under 5 (Ages 0-4) Free Sightseeing

💜 Our Mini Mumbler review of City Cruises York… 

“I loved going on the boat so much. The scenery was beautiful and the fish and chips were very yummy. I would definitely recommend this to any age. My favourite part was when the Captain was telling us stories about the buildings we were sailing past. There was even a little dog on board who was cute!”  Edith, age 10.

“I loved the fish and chips cruise because it had such great food and it was very interesting to hear the man. I loved going on top of the boat because I saw amazing buildings and lots of other boats. We waved to people on the way and lots of them waved back!” Megan Age 8

ℹ️ More information about City Cruises York 

👩‍💻 Find out more on the City Cruise York website.
💷  Day sightseeing cruise from £13 per adult/£7.50 per child/under 5s free. 1 hour boat ride from £35. Fish & Chip Cruise from £25 per adult/£15 per child/under 3s free.
📅 Open seven days a week, see website for sailing times
📍 King’s Staith Landing, York, YO1 9SN and Lendal Bridge Landing, York, YO1 7DP

Summer at York Museums Trust

Yorkshire Museum:


Both of my girls love fossils, having spent many hours searching for them on north Yorkshire’s beaches (and even in our own garden during lockdown!)  and my youngest, in particular, is a huge fan of the ‘Small People, Big Dreams’ books where she was first introduced to Mary Anning so we were really excited when we found out that the new exhibition was dedicated to one of her heroines…  The exciting new exhibition ‘Mary Anning Rocks’ will celebrates the inspiring story of the renowned palaeontologist. Best known for discovering Jurassic marine fossils in Lyme Regis on the southwestern coast of England, this family-friendly display introduces Mary Anning (1799-1847) and explains how this pioneering woman of science changed the way we view the natural world.

There is a fab trail around the exhibition which kept the girls engaged and they loved digging for fossils too in the interactive zone.

The trail continues around the museum and they could see a full size Sea Dragon as well as do some fossil rubbings and chill out in the sensory zone too. I love seeing these areas pop up around the different attractsion in York as it really helps all parents – especially those with children who have sensory needs.


As well as the fantastic Yorkshire Museum, The trust includes 2 other attractions, both of which have great things going on this summer, here is a summary…

York Art Gallery:
Flowers, plant life and gardens have fascinated and inspired generations of artists. York Art Gallery’s new exhibition ‘Bloom’ brings together more than 100 botanical artworks from its collection, alongside loans, to explore the importance of nature and green spaces for enjoyment, creativity and well-being.

Throughout ‘Bloom’, there’s an exciting array of creative activities for all ages, including family-friendly artist-led workshops, under 5s storytelling, and fun trails around the exhibition.

York Castle Museum:
This summer to explore over 400 years of York’s history! The popular outdoor Playbox, run by Playful Anywhere, will be BACK at the museum this August. Full of fun indoor and outdoor activities there’s something for everyone to enjoy – whatever the weather!

There will be NEW and exciting ‘imagination’ stations throughout the Museum along with fun cooking demonstrations in the Castle Kitchen!

New for Summer 2023 visit our latest exhibition ‘Celebrating York’s Gypsy and Traveller Heritage’, developed in partnership with York Travellers Trust. Through photography and historical information, learn about their important connections to the city, and then enjoy its activity space where you can create your very own beautiful paper flower.

💜 Our Mini Mumbler review of the Mary Anning Exhibition at Yorkshire Museum

“I loved going to the Mary Anning Exhibition. There were so many fossils and I sw a giant fossil of a dinosaur. I loved how you could play and dig in the dirt to find fossils and how on the walls there was a description about Mary Anning. She is an amazing little statue that I loved and there was a sketch area where you can do a rubbing of a fossil. There was a trail that had amazing things to see inside it” Megan Age 8. 

ℹ️ More information about York Museums Trust 

👩‍💻 Find out more on the York Museums Trust website.

York Art Gallery:
💷 General admission – Free. Bloom £8 adult/child free
📅 Open Wed-Sun, 10am-5pm
📍Exhibition Square, York, YO1 7EW

Yorkshire Musuem:
💷 £8 per adult pre-booked/free child entrance for YO/City of York council postcodes.
📅 Open Tues to Sun, 10am-5pm.
📍Museum Gardens, York

York Castle Museum:
💷 14 adult pre-booked/child free . Free child entrance for YO/City of York council postcodes.
📅 Open Mon, 11am-5pm and Tues – Sun, 10am-5pm.
📍Eye of York, York, YO1 9RY

Enjoy hassle-free summer travel into York with York Park & Ride

Getting into York with your family couldn’t be simpler with the all-electric Park & Ride!

First York Park and Ride

First York Park and Ride logoForget about hunting for expensive city centre parking and leave your car for free at one of the 6 easy-to-reach sites around York. Hop on one of the zero-emission electric buses and let someone else do the driving. With prioritised traffic lights and dedicated bus lanes, Park & Ride buses can get you in and out of the city quickly and run as frequently as every 12 minutes.

It’s a convenient and cost-effective option when you head out to explore York together! An Adult Return ticket is just £3.60 and up to three children can travel with you for free. Getting your ticket is easy too, simply download the First Bus App from the App Store or Google Play. Not only can you purchase your ticket in advance, but it also uses real-time information so you can track your bus live on a map and know when your next bus is about to arrive!

ℹ️ More information about York Park & Ride

ℹ️  Find out more on the First Bus website.
💷  Adult Return is only £3.60 and available to buy on bus or the First Bus App. Up to three children (aged 16 and under) can travel for FREE when accompanied by a fare-paying adult.
📍Askham Bar Park & Ride, Designer Outlet Park & Ride, Grimston Bar Park & Ride, Monks Cross Park & Ride, Poppleton Bar Park & Ride, Rawcliffe Bar Park & Ride

You can find out more information about Summer in York with Visit York on their website here.

Mumbler Reviews: Messingham Zoo

We had a fantastic day out at Messingham Zoo doing their animal experiences; me and my son spent time with the lemurs and meerkats!

Messingham Zoo is around a 40 minute drive from Hull near Scunthorpe. I’d never heard of it before but when another mum told me she’d been and enjoyed a day out there I thought I’d better pop across the river and check it out.

It’s different to a mainstream zoo, it’s focus is all about the care and protection of the animals that it rescues or takes in and educating the public about them. There are lots of animals to see and meet and there were several keepers on hand who told us all about where they had come from, the care they had needed, and the story of each animal. Some have come from other zoo’s when they have needed to be split from other group or family members, a lot had been kept as exotic pets in unsuitable conditions. The animals were clearly all very happy in their new homes. It’s run by a lovely couple who were working in the cafe when we visited and told us a lot about how they set up the zoo.

You can just go to the zoo for the day and look around, there are lots of information boards and the keepers to talk to, or you can book an animal experience. Animal experiences can be booked with these animals (all are for age 6+ years):

  • Meerkats
  • Ringtailed lemurs
  • Emus
  • Wallabies
  • Pot bellied pigs
  • Foxes
  • Armadillo
  • Sulcata tortoise

Also for over 15s are porcupines. You can meet one animal for £40, or two for £75. They also have a zoo keeper experience days (for ages 8+) where you shadow the keeper and do all of their duties with them from 12-4pm. I thought it was a fantastic gift idea, maybe a present for someone who is hard to buy for but loves animals.

We chose to see the lemurs and meerkats, we met our keeper Carol and went over to the lemur enclosure first. Carol was lovely, really put my son at ease, and she was a fountain of knowledge. She was clearly very passionate about the animals and spent a lot of time with them, she told us the names and stories of each animal, and about their personalities. The lemurs was gorgeous! So gentle and soft. If you have a nervous child these are ideal to start with, my son was a bit unsure going in but they gradually came to him and by the end of the session they were sat all over him! We fed them banana and sultanas and spent time sat with them.

Next was the meerkats. These were a bit more inquisitive and were all over us straight away. One even tried to get in the sleeve of Carol’s coat! We fed them mealworms and heard all about the pack and who was who. I have no idea how Carol knew each one, they looked very similar to me! You need to wear sturdy trousers as they were a bit scratchy, and fully closed shoes (no sandals).

We then spent time seeing the other animals, using the play area and the cafe. We were there around 2.5 hours in total. Afterwards the owners recommended a good walk along the river bank in the next village. It was a really wide stretch of the rive that flows up to join the Ooze bridge and there as lots of wildlife to spot and a great, safe walk.

It really was a hidden gem of a discovery. If you like animals then I’d highly recommend a visit. They are open Friday to Tuesday 10am-4pm (7 days a week in school holidays), find them at Butterwick Road, Messingham, DN17 3PN.

Visit their website here for more information, follow them on facebook here.





Mumbler Reviews: Sunday Lunch at Highfield, Driffield

What a hidden gem!! We went to check out Highfield in Driffield, and what a discovery it was!! Family friendly and stunning.

I have never been to Highfield in Driffield before, I have driven past it and didn’t even know it was there. But just on the way into the town, hidden behind a huge old wall, is this amazing place!

Built in 1864, it was 8 years ago that the family started opening it’s doors to the public. Today it is a hotel with beautiful bedrooms, a venue for events such as weddings and parties, or you can just stop in for a coffee and cake, an afternoon tea or a full meal. We went to try their Sunday lunch and had the most lovely afternoon there.



The house itself is beautiful, inside the decor is really interesting and there are lots of quirky features that my kids loved. We ate our meal in the main dining room which had a huge original fireplace inside, and we also had a look around the bar and drawing room. The toilets are also incredible!


Outside the grounds are huge and you can roam around them all, hill rolling is encouraged. Between ordering and having our starters and mains we went outside to play on the lawn. We then took our desserts out onto the patio and enjoyed the sunshine and watching the kids play tig. At the bottom of the lawn is a nature trail through the trees and even a stream at the end. The family have 4 young children of their own and we found all 4 playing in the woods with their grandad, the family were so welcoming and happy to see us enjoying the grounds to.



Onto the food – wow! The children’s menu was good and my daughter had a child’s starter and roast beef, my son had a starter and roast beef from the main menu. The food was all fantastic; very well presented, very tasty and a level up from a usual pub Sunday roast. The kids desserts were huge (we just pinched a bit of theirs as we were too full and had coffee outside!). The staff were absolutely lovely, very welcoming and couldn’t do enough to help us.

It wasn’t cheap and it isn’t a regular meal out, it’s definitely a special occasion or treat place to go for dinner. But we spent 3 hours there and could have spent longer. Dinner was just part of a lovely day running around the lawn and grounds, exploring the house and just enjoying being somewhere so unique.


It is definitely the sort of place I will call in at for coffee and cake, especially if we’re heading to or from the coast, and I am going to treat my mum to afternoon tea there soon. They run special events such as Princess afternoon tea’s for children and a Santa experience so we will be back to try those!

You can also stay overnight in the hotel bedrooms so if you wanted a child free night away, not too far from home, this would be ideal. We have a relatively big wedding anniversary coming up this summer so if I can bag a babysitter I might just be treating Mr Mumbler to a night here to celebrate 15 years of not killing each other!


For more details you can visit their website here or follow them on facebook here. Email enquiries@thehighfieldhouse.com or call 01377 256231.

HIGHFIELD, Windmill Hill, Driffield, East Yorkshire, YO25 5YP




Mumbler Reviews: Ings Park Alpacas

Mumbler Assistant Andrea booked a family visit to Ings Park Alpacas in North Cave during the Easter school holidays, here’s how she got on…..


We thoroughly enjoyed our Easter experience at Ings Park Alpacas! There were 5 of us, 2 adults and 3 children (2 teenagers and a 9 year old) and we had 3 alpacas between us. We were lucky enough to have 2 baby alpacas– Jasper and Derik – as well as Millie an adult alpaca.

The whole experience was so much more than just taking them for a trek around a field. We were introduced to all the Alpacas and learned their names, then the children fed them before setting off on a walk. The owners were really friendly and informative and made sure we all knew what we were doing before setting off.

The walk was a huge amount of fun; the babies were a bit unpredictable but we soon got used to them and learned how to handle them properly, and even got to take them around an obstacle course. We did that part twice and the kids got more confident the second time, guiding them over the jumps quite successfully (although Jasper didn’t really do any jumping, he preferred to take a leisurely stroll over them!).

The 2 young men from Ings Park Alpacas that took us round were confident and enthusiastic, they clearly love what they do, and that really shone through when they were telling us all the about the animals. They also made sure the entire group managed to get some good photos with the Alpacas.

Back at the farm we had the chance to feed some of the other animals including goats, pigs, and sheep (you can also book to take the sheep for a walk, which is also looked to be very good fun!).

It was definitely one of the best things we’ve done this year, the children said ‘best day ever’ and ‘if we could do this again tomorrow, we definitely should.’ They didn’t stop talking about it for the rest of the day, so it’s a full 5 stars from us.

Top Tip – wear wellies or boots that you don’t mind getting filthy.


Find full details of their Easter experiences on Mumbler here.

For more information visit the Ings Park Alpaca website here.

Ings Park Alpacas, Swallows Retreat, South Ings Lane, North Cave, HU15 2PA


Mumbler Reviews: Mechanics Challenge Strike

My kids both love the Geomag and Mechanics range of toys, which are various types of building and shapes using magnets. We were delighted to be sent a brand new toy from the Mechanics range to try out – Mechanics Challenge Strike.

We have a star chart at home (they get a star sticker for being kind or any other good behaviour) so as soon as our star chart was full, this was their reward. It’s designed for ages 8+ and both my 8 year old daughter and 11 year old son were really pleased with the look of it.

They needed quite a lot of adult help to build it, it was quite tricky to get all the parts assembled exactly, but there was lots they could do to help us put it together. Once assembled, they were off! The principle is that the main section spins round just using gravity and magnets, and you need to knock over as many columns as possible, as quickly as possible.

There are various ways you can play it – 2 person or solo – and the option to make up your own game and rules. My children played at knocking each others columns off, then my daughter spent aged playing on her own and timing herself on how fast she could do it. It was also very nice to see my son off a screen for a change and doing something with his sister, and getting excited about it!

It’s a very well made, sturdy toy and I love the fact it doesn’t need batteries or any power source; far too many toys do and as we are trying to live more sustainably (and hate it when they batteries run out and we don’t have the right size in to fix it!) this was a huge plus for me.

We’ve left the toy assembled and out in our lounge since and it has been well played with. It’s a good choice of gift or reward for an older child and we have really enjoyed trying it out.

Buy one here.

Follow Geomag on facebook here for new news.



NB For the purpose of this review the item was gifted, but all views are my own 

An Introduction to Water Babies

Read all about Freddie’s baby swimming journey with Water Babies, at one of our local pools Market Weighton…..


Freddie, started his Water Babies adventure at 4 months at Weighton Wold Pool.

“Water Babies had come recommended to me by a friend whose two children had both completed the whole course from weeks old to 4 years. I had taken her children a few times and thought it was great so was really keen to give it a go!”

Week 1 – How was I going to manage to get Freddie and me changed? What if he poohed in the pool? What if he was hungry? These are all questions I was worrying about…top tips….

  • Take plenty of towels – one to lie him on, one to wrap up in and one to dry him
  • When the babies get bigger, pop the nappy on and a hooded towel then get changed yourself.
  • Changing mat is key
  • All babies wear a swim nappy and a Water Babies Happy Nappy to prevent accidents. Once potty trained (we dream of such a thing!), they can just wear a Water Babies Happy Nappy.
  • Freddie was so occupied in the swimming pool, he didn’t have time to think of his tummy! However afterwards he was hungry then had a really good sleep!

Would Freddie be ok when he went under water?

“What an amazing experience but I won’t lie I was very nervous!! Now he absolutely loves it and it is probably his favourite bit.”

Is there a lot of singing?!

“Just the right the amount for this slightly tone deaf Mummy!”

Is it worth the money?

“I think so, we don’t do many other classes and this is one thing we really enjoy together. Plus, swimming is a life skill. In Water Babies, they are learning basic lifesaving skills. They are confident in water – it is not a scary place to be. In addition, if they were to fall into a lake, there is a fighting chance, we could use our Water Babies skills to help. This is with the splash in from the side, under the water, turn around and hold on to the side. Then “monkey monkey monkey” along the side to Mummy or another adult to safety.”

The instructors are brilliant and build the babies and parents confidence. They recognise when the baby isn’t quite “on it” and tailor their activity accordingly. Remembering all the babies names always astounds me!

Luckily we haven’t got to the Water Wobbles yet but know Water Babies are well aware of this phase and will guide us through if need be.

Weighton Wold is easy to get to, plenty of parking and warm in the pool when you get there!! Winner winner!

In addition to this pool in Market Weighton, Water Babies also swim in Hull at Nuffield and Everlast. Find their latest timetable here.

Booking is essential! Call 01423 457000, email littlefish@waterbabies.co.uk. Or visit the website here.


waterbabies baby and tots swimming hull east riding











NB Freddie’s mum kindly did this review for Mumbler, all views are her own.



Mumbler Reviews: The Secret Village

The Secret Village is an imagination play area and cafe in East Yorkshire, located in the heart of Anlaby, at the Pryme Street car park. I took my nephews and daughter to play….


Both of my children have had fun playing at The Secret Village over the past few years and it’s somewhere I always love to go. My nephews came to visit and stay with me for the weekend so it was a no-brainer on where to go for a fun morning out for them, and a great coffee and cake for me!

I’d say the centre is suitable from babies to around 7 or 8 years. My nephews are 7 months and 3 and my daughter who has just turned 8 came along to play with them. It was a perfect age mix and they all played together, and with me!

There are lots of little shops and areas for children to play in, with so much to do inside them all. They could go to the vets and look after the animals, make meals and drinks in the bistro, dress up and perform in the theatre and be a fireman at the fire station, to name some of them. We spent a lot of time pushing each other on the car and taking it to the garage to mend. I also kept them busy by ordering a lot of pizza and taking my poorly toy pets to the vets. Everything is very clean and all good quality – the ‘food’ is all wooden, no plastic – with so much attention to detail to make it all very realistic.

It was lovely to play with my nephews and come up with games but it was also lovely to have a coffee in peace and watch them play. You can see them at all times from your table in the cafe and I felt relaxed and safe that they were nearby. I am a complete coffee snob and I’m very fussy about the coffee I drink but this was very good, the cakes and tea cakes I got for the kids were great too.

So overall another big thumbs up for The Secret Village, both from me and from my 3 year old nephew – he face timed me this week to ask when can he come and stay with Aunty Rachael again and when can I take him back to the Secret Village!

The Secret Village is open daily, check, their website for latest opening times. They also have a range of extra sessions on during school hoildays. 

You can also have your childs birthday party with them!

For more info email info@thesecretvillage.co.uk, visit their website here or you can follow them on facebook here.  They also provide children’s parties.

Ringrose Centre, Pryme Street, Anlaby, HU10 6SH. 07709 469090.

Mumbler Reviews: Go Ape Normanby Hall

Last weekend I took my kids over the bridge to Go Ape at Normanby Hall to try out their Treetop Adventure course. We had an absolute blast….

Go Ape is set inside the Normanby Hall grounds; we parked in the main car park and it was a short walk through the courtyard and out to the wooded area. I’ve never done a Go Ape before (I went on a hen do to one once but I was pregnant so had to sit at the bottom and watch!). My kids have done a few high wire style activities but never an actual Go Ape so we really didn’t know what to expect. To be honest I was a little apprehensive!

The staff were fantastic and put us all at ease, they were very knowledgeable and really friendly. Firstly we all got our harnesses on and watched a safety brief and demo, then we tried a short section on the ground to get used to the mechanisms. This helped us all feel more confident with how it worked and we were ready to climb up the steps to course 1!

There are 3 courses at the Treetops Adventure, at the end of each one you come down a long zip wire then go back up to start another course. My 11 year old son took the lead and sped off ahead. My 7 year old daughter went next; I stayed next to her for the first few minutes then as soon as she had got the hang of it she sped off and left me too! So it was then me bringing up the rear of our party.

Each of the 3 courses goes one level higher, the obstacles on each course also seemed to get a bit trickier and more wobbly (but that could just be me!). You get a full hour on the courses, time starts as you climb up for the first one. I made it around all 3 in the hour, my speedy kids made it around all 3 twice so did 6 loops in all! Both of my children’s favourite part was the zip wire, they were very competitive both trying to land on their feet which they eventually did (I landed on my bum every time).

My kids didn’t stop smiling or laughing for the full hour. I loved watching them have such a good time and I did enjoy it too, I certainly felt a huge sense of achievement after completing each course.  I was shattered by the end! My arms ached the next day so I know I had a good workout as well as a fun time.

It was great to be in the outdoors, doing something active and doing something all together. I’m finding it increasingly hard to find things that my eldest wants to do and that he enjoys, he loved this and came off saying it was the best thing he’s ever done. My youngest loved it too, her smile was enormous when she finished the last zip wire on her feet and she’s been asking when we can go again.

At the end we all got a certificate and then went off to play in the park at Normanby. Overall it was a great family day out, something very memorable, and I’d highly recommend a visit.

There are two activities at Go Ape Normanby Hall –

  • Treetop Adventure which we did is aimed at kids or for families to do together, or adults who want to start with a smaller challenge, perhaps tackle some fears. You need to be over 1 metre tall, any age can go on (under 6s need an adult to go up with them).
  • Treetop Challenge is their famous award-winning course, that gets higher and higher – perfect for thrill-seekers. For that you need to be over 10 years and over 1.4m (my son is and he wants to go back and do this one with me!)


Go Ape Normanby Hall is open every day from 4th to 20th April for the Easter Holidays.

For people who are unsure or apprehensive, they are offering Go Ape’s first ever taster sessions 19th to 22nd May. Book onto the Treetop Challenge and Treetop Adventure for £4/£5 retrospectively, to experience a part of the adventure. These customers receive a voucher with a discount code to book their full experience at a later date.

Book here on the Go Ape website, follow Go Ape Normanby Hall on their facebook page, or contact them on questions@goape.co.uk.


Mumbler Reviews: Northwood Trail, The Fairy Sanctuary

I took my two children, age 7 and 10, for a school holiday day out to the Northwood Trail and we had a fantastic time!

Northwood is located near Stamford Bridge, this side of York, and was around a 50 minute drive from West Hull. It is very rural and a bit tricky to find but we used the directions on their website (not our sat nav which was way off!) and we found it no problem.

It’s described as a Fairy Sanctuary so I was unsure how much my 10 year old son would enjoy it, but he loves a woodland walk so I thought I’d bring him along with my 7 year old daughter. He actually ended up enjoying it just as much as she did, if not more!

As soon as you walk out of the car park into the woods it feels magical. There are little details everywhere to look for such as fairy doors and it’s very atmospheric. We collected a trail map from the entry point and off we went to explore and find some magical creatures!

There are lots of incredibly well-made, beautiful fairy doors, along with houses and villages to look for and other places that mythical creatures might live in. As well as looking for fairies we were looking for other creatures such as trolls, giants, hobgoblins, even fresh water mermaids in the lake! Each area has an information board about the creatures and what they were like, along with stories about them, which we really enjoyed reading.

There was a maze part way round that my children enjoyed following (it’s a one way system for covid so that calmed my nerves about getting lost in it!), with some den building materials in the centre which were a big hit too.

It took nearly 2 hours to get around but we did stop and read/do everything, younger children may skip around it quicker. We were mesmerised for the whole time! At the end of the trail is a lovely cafe and the fairy museum where we spent ages looking at the artefacts and the model villages.

Overall it was a really good day out, I wasn’t sure what to expect but it definitely exceeded anything we could have imagined. It’s good for a wide range of ages, younger children will like it but it’s good for older children too – it sparked my 10 year old’s imagination and he got really into some of the stories, especially the one about giants and their swords! I really enjoyed it too and its one of my favourite days out that we’ve had, its very interesting for the grown ups too! It is definitely a place I would return to and would recommend a visit to.

We combined it with a visit to The Balloon Tree, farmshop and cafe just a few minutes drive away in Stamford Bridge, to do their pick your own fruit field and we came home with a huge punnet of PYO raspberries. Northwood Trail is also near to Piglets if you wanted to combine it with that attraction too, or you could carry on to the park and ride and pop into York city centre to make a longer day out. Driving home we avoided the busy A1079 and came via Fridaythorpe and Wetwang, the Wetwang Scarecrow is a good one to do too.

Northwood Trail is open daily in school holidays then at weekends and selected dates at other times. They also put on special events such as Christmas, look out for details of those on Mumbler.

Find them at Buttercrambe Wood, YO41 1AP. For more info please visit their website here, or follow them on facebook here.

Sarah & Archer Review Beginners Baby Massage with The Happy Baby Hive

Mumbler Reviewer Sarah and baby Archer did a course of baby massage with The Happy Baby Hive at Williams Den, here’s how they got on…


I’m a first-time mum with a lockdown baby so I’ve been keen to get to as many baby classes as I can now the world has opened up a bit. Getting out of the house has been great for both me and my baby boy, Archer – even he has become increasingly bored of our four walls over the first months of his life, and I think it’s key to his development to meet new people, experience new things and spend time with other babies.

the happy baby hive baby massage reviewArcher was just under 6 months when we started the baby massage sessions with Natalie. As an eager roller who is easily bored I was slightly nervous to start the sessions. Despite the classes being described as ‘baby-led’ I had visions of an oily battle – with him having a meltdown and me left red-faced. I needn’t have worried – Natalie had already anticipated babies behaving like babies and had left some toys in a basket for each of us to entertain our little ones with when required, while we continued to listen to the massage sequences.

Natalie explained that it’s important to do just 5 minutes of massage in a happy baby than battle to do 20 minutes on an unhappy baby so that really took the pressure off if Archer had other intentions for the session…which he often did…’Hello foil blanket, oooh a colourful scarf…oh my – a feather!!’

I mirrored the strokes being demonstrated for as long as his attention allowed. Depending on the area being worked on, this varied, and I knew he wouldn’t be having any of it when it came to his feet – as a Reflexologist it’s ironic that my child hates his feet being touched. Probably because they’re his number one snack at the moment. Luckily his back, arms and legs took much less convincing.

Everything was provided, including the oil, and we worked on a different routine and body part each week, starting with legs and feet then moving onto tummy, chest and arms, face, back and ending with a colic routine. Natalie also repeated the previous weeks routine each week which helped.

the happy baby hive baby massage reviewThe classes are ultimately for the mums as much as the babies. We had plenty of time to chat through the trials and tribulations of motherhood, to enjoy a cuppa and some biscuits and to take in the stunning views through the giant windows at the lovely William’s Den. I noticed more than once we were all still sat there chatting beyond the 11am finish time which shows both how relaxed the sessions were and how much we all enjoyed them.

It’s clear that Natalie is very passionate about supporting mums on their journey. She was always friendly, and the classes were really well thought out. The room is a warm, calming environment with pretend candles, inspirational quotes about motherhood and even a pile of baby books for mums to borrow. Each week there was a backdrop set up for us to have mum and baby photos taken, and the last session was a graduation session in which we were all given a certificate and some paint to add baby footprints to them if we wanted. All in all it was a really well-rounded class with a bit of everything, and we learnt some lovely strokes to add to my boy’s bedtime routine.



Find details of The Happy Baby Hive classes on Mumbler here, or follow them on Facebook here or Instagram @thehappybabyhive. Or email thehappybabyhive@gmail.com to book your place.

Class attendees will also have access to their private Facebook group where Natalie shares useful content for mums, and where they’ll be able to find a video running through all of the massage techniques to refer back to.

Mumbler Reviews: Pure Holistics Reflexology

I’ve never tried reflexology before, to be honest I wasn’t totally sure what it was or what it does! Pure Holistics Reflexology is run by Sarah in Brough; she asked if I would like to go along and try it and find out more, so I booked in for a Saturday morning session. She does Reflexology around being a mum to her baby boy, so can slot in appointments at times to suit you. Bringing your baby with you is also an option if they are non-mobile.

Sarah explained that Reflexology is the application of gentle pressure to the reflex points on the soles of the feet to bring about a deep state of relaxation, aid the body’s healing processes and restore a state of balance and well-being. Originating in 4000 B.C. in China, Reflexology has a long history. It is a safe massage therapy which works holistically to reduce the incidence of stress and physical pain associated with lifestyle and a range of health conditions, including IBS, anxiety, insomnia, headaches, PCOS, pre-conceptual care, arthritis, general aches and pains, and many more.

The room Sarah uses is lovely, very calming with a comfy chair, it smelt gorgeous too! She was using a really stylish oil burner which caught my eye, her husband actually makes them and you can buy them on her website here.

I have had a stressful few months (like most people!), juggling work and children, living in fear of my children being sent home from school to isolate, and we’re also trying to move house which is elevating my stress levels further, and my gin intake. Sarah explained how reflexology helps you de-stress and I felt a sense of calm straight away. Sarah made me feel completely at ease and I really enjoyed the session and learning about reflexology. The session lasted an hour and by the end of it I felt like a new person, relaxed and revived.

I found it really interesting that the different parts of your feet are connected to other parts of your body. When Sarah massaged a certain part of my foot it felt slightly uncomfortable and I told her, she explained that that part of my foot is connected to my knee and asked if I have any problems with my knee – I do! I have a recurring netball injury that often twinges when I play or go for a long run. Sarah detected it from the reflexology, she could then work on that area to help it.

I would definitely recommend booking a session with Sarah, whether it is just for relaxation or for holistic therapy of an injury or ailment. I rarely do anything for myself and ‘me time’ is bottom of a long list but I came back from the session a calmer, nicer mum and all of my family noticed how chilled out I was. I will be back for another session, probably just before we move house to get prepared!

First session is £25, subsequent sessions are £20 and last an hour. Find out more on her website here. Or contact Sarah to book by emailing sarah@pure-holistics.com, or texting 07536 111 788.

Mumbler Reviews: NEW Lost City Adventure Golf Hull

Lost City Adventure Golf has recently opened inside St Stephen’s Shopping Centre Hull so I thought I had better go and check it out with my family and see what it’s like! We were very impressed and had a really good family afternoon there.

It’s located on the Leisure Terrace (where the gym used to be); you can book in advance but don’t need to, you can just turn up. It was a wet Saturday afternoon when we went and there was a small queue, but it only took around 10 minutes and there was loads of things to look at in the ‘jungle’ as you queue.

There are 2 courses to choose from, both 18 holes, we picked skull island. All 4 of us played so we collected our clubs and headed into the jungle! You can’t start a hole until the group in front has moved on so it’s well spaced out, we didn’t feel pressured from the group behind us and the group in front of us were well ahead so it was very relaxed and not rushed. It was competitive though! We were given a scorecard and kept a close eye in the scores. To be fair my children didn’t even fall out over the scoring or start cheating until hole 7 so I thought we’d done very well!

The course weaves through the jungle and all holes are different, there were loads of things to see and spot along the way such as animals and ruins, and regular thunderstorms! It was all very well put together and realistic, fun and not too scary. Our highlights were a parrot and a talking tree!

It took about an hour for  of us to get around all 18 holes, then we went into the Tiki bar for food and drinks. 4 soft drinks and 2 large pizzas were £16 so it was reasonably priced and really good food. The atmosphere in the cafe bar was really good too, we had a booth and it did feel like we were sat in the jungle.

My children really enjoyed the activity but so did me and my husband; we did it together as a family and felt like we’d actually spent time together (rather than us just taking them somewhere and watching). My children are 10 and 7 and easily managed the course, although it would be fine for much younger children as well as being a good activity for teens.

We will definitely be back for more golf again, I want to try the other course next time. I’d also pop in to just use the Tiki bar if I’m in St Stephens as it makes a really good, different stop for just drinks or food.

Lost City Adventure Golf Hull is open 7 days a week from 10am to 10pm and located on the first floor (Leisure Terrace) in St Stephen’s Shopping Centre, Ferensway, Hull. Suitable for players aged 3yrs+ with both courses being wheelchair and pushchair accessible. Full details on their website.

Turn up and pay on the door, or book online in advance.

lost city golf hull, new adventure crazy golf family day out in hull


Mumbler Reviews: Geomag

We were asked by Geomag to review one of their Magnetic Construction Sets. I have seen Geomag before in shops and at a friends house but have never had any for my children. It is amazing! A really clever system of construction pieces, all held together by magnets. It’s very good quality and easy to use and build with, I also really liked that it was made from 100% recycled plastic.

We tried the Geomag Supercolor Panels Recycled 52 Magnetic Piece Set which had colourful shapes as well as the sticks and magnets to hold up our constructions. My children are 6 and 10 and have both spent hours playing with it, although I would say it is good for younger children too (recommended age is 5+) as well as older children. It is also a good one for the grown ups! I’ve enjoyed building my own masterpieces with my children! My 6 year old daughter has been doing 2D and 3D shapes at school this term so this has been a perfect way to play and cement what she is learning at school. My 10 year old son usually takes a lot of persuading to come off his play station and actually play, but he’s really enjoyed doing this and it’s been great to see him picking it up often.

I liked the type of play it enables – it sparked their imaginations to create structures, it was also educational looking at the shapes and talking about how the magnets worked. It’s also great for relaxing; my daughter had a tantrum one day and went up to her room to play with this and it really helped to calm her down. It’s a perfect toy that will keep children entertained for hours.

You can buy this set online here.

Or you can visit the Geomag website here to find out more about them and all of their sets.


NB This set was gifted to Mumbler for the purpose of the review, but all comments and opinions are my own.

Our Staycation to Whitby

Last Summer we had a weeks holiday to explore the area around Whitby, the coast and North Yorkshire Moors. If you are looking for a great family holiday for this year, check out what we did!

We wanted somewhere not too far to drive to and somewhere with plenty to do outdoors, so we decided to go to Whitby for the last week of the school summer holidays. We often have day trips to the coast but usually don’t get much further up than Scarborough and we wanted to explore all of the area above it. Whitby seemed like the ideal base with plenty to do in the town and lots of places to visit nearby. We found a perfect little holiday house within walking distance of the town centre through Ingrid Flutes Yorkshire Holiday Cottages.

Some of the things we did you can do as a day trip from Hull, or you might want to book somewhere to stay for a long weekend or week and do more of them. My children were 7 and 10 so we did manage a lot of longer walks but if you have younger ones there are still beautiful places to see you can just cut down the length of walks to suit.

Here’s the places we visited and my recommendations for that area…


Sunday: Ravenscar and Boggle Hole

We were all keen to see some seals so on our first day we drove a short way down the coast to Ravenscar. We parked on the main road for free and walked to the cafe where the descent down to the beach starts. It’s a steep walk down but well worth it for the spectacular views across the bay. On the beach we saw hundreds of seals! Walking down the beach we almost tripped over a couple as they are so camouflaged. There were also some great fossils to spot within the large black rocks along the beach. Black clouds were rolling in so we scrambled back up the cliff to the car for a car picnic while the showers passed.

After lunch we drove to the next bay up from Ravenscar, Boggle Hole. We could have actually walked if it was low tide as they are really close but we ended up on some quite hairy single track roads to get there instead! There are parking bays at the end of the road, again free of charge, then you walk the short distance to the sea. Boggle Hole is where the river flows out and meets the sea, so we had a lot of fun paddling in the stream and rearranging some rocks. There is a cave just on the south side where the river meets the beach and legend has it this is where the Boggle Monster lives (we waded through the river to check but he wasn’t home). We had drinks and snacks at the YHA cafe next to the river, food was fantastic, so much so that we went back later in the week for more!

Monday – Whitby Town

We spent Monday thoroughly exploring the town. We started at North Bay and my children had a great time on the trampolines, the go-karts, paddling in the lido and playing crazy golf. We walked down onto the beach to make sand sculptures, then walked along the beach to the main harbour.

We explored the old town and the quirky shops, made our way towards the Abbey and climbed the 199 steps to get up to it. Then we discovered the Whitby Brewery Company have opened up their brewery opposite the abbey with picnic benches outside so we tried some of their beers with the perfect view of the abbey behind! They were welcoming of our children too and had lots of soft drinks. We then walked back to the town, explored the marina and ended in the park in the town centre, Pannet Park, which was a really good find. The play equipment is excellent and suitable for a wide age range, there are nice gardens and lots of very tame squirrels too (we returned to the park a lot during the week!). We ended the day with fish and chips then did some obligatory crabbing off the harbour wall in the evening.


Tuesday – Falling Foss and The Cinder Trail

We headed off early and got a space in the car park at Falling Foss (again free parking!), about a 15 minute drive inland from Whitby. It is a beautiful waterfall with various distance walks along the river and through woodland. We had a lovely walk before paddling in the stream and finished with a visit to the tea room for amazing bacon sandwiches and scones.

We had taken the children’s bikes on the roof of the car so in the afternoon we cycled up a section of the Cinder Path, which starts opposite Pannet Park in Whitby. It’s the old railway line from Whitby towards Goathland and is a good, safe track for cycling and walking with some beautiful views of the viaduct then the countryside. Its slightly uphill all the way out so we didn’t actually get far as some little legs were aching but my husband went for a run the next morning and jogged further up.

In the evening we went crabbing again off the Whitby harbour but my daughter pulled up a jellyfish which stung her hand! I had no idea crabbing could be so perilous! Luckily we rushed back to our holiday home and found vinegar in the cupboard to apply and the sting soon went down.

Wednesday – Sandsend

We had a proper beach day, arriving early to get parked on the road through Sandsend (we did have to pay for that one) with a car full of buckets and spades, blankets, body boards, wet suits and a picnic. Directly opposite where we parked on the main road were public toilets (nice and clean and 2 in at a time for social distancing). The beach was quiet, the sun was out and it was a lovely day. In the afternoon we walked into the village centre to see the river meet the sea and get ice creams and we were lucky enough to spot a huge pod of dolphins out to sea! They stayed for ages playing near the shore and it was something me and my children will never forget.

Thursday – Robin Hoods Bay and Whitby Abbey

We drove the short distance down the coast to Robin Hoods Bay and parked in the car park at the top of the steep road down through the town. I have never been before and it was one of the prettiest places I have ever seen. We explored the tiny cobbled streets and ended on the beach to do some rock pooling. We walked south and ended up back at Boggle Hole for another round of drinks and ice creams at the YHA cafe!

We then drove back to Whitby and went inside Whitby Abbey, its an English Heritage site and there is so much more of the old abbey to see from the inside. As well as being beautiful it was also educational, there was a good trail for the children to do around the site and we all learned a lot about being a monk and about Bram Stoker (who got his inspiration for Dracula from visiting the Abbey). This was the only thing we booked online in advance during the holiday.

Then it was back down into Whitby for the park and crabbing, again! I am sure we caught exactly the same crabs as we did the last time.

Friday – Fossil’ing at Port Mulgrave, a walk through Staithes and canoeing at Ruswarp

We started by driving north to Port Mulgrave where we had heard you can collect fossils. It was a very steep descent to the beach and we had to use a rope at one point to get down so this is not for families with young children or for anyone with difficulty walking. It was worth the heart stopping moments though watching my children hanging off the rope as we found loads of ammonites when we reached the beach!

We then drove the short drive back to Staithes, famous for being where CBeebies Old Jacks Boat is filmed. We walked all the way down the steep road to the beach, had ice creams and a look in the rock pools and bought lots of holiday souvenirs in the gift shop.

In the afternoon we drove to Ruswarp, just 5 minutes drive inland from Whitby. It is a beautiful village on the river with lots to do for children – hire canoes or rowing boats, go on the miniature train and, in normal times, there’s a soft play centre too. My son and husband hired a canoe each and me and my daughter got a rowing boat for an hour which cost £21 in total and I thought was really good value. Off we all paddled down the river, it was beautiful and I felt like I was living in the Wind in the Willows. After a walk around the village we had an amazing pub tea at The Bridge Inn, the best meal I’ve had for a long time. Friends of ours had done Ruswarp as a day trip from Hull over the summer and recommended it to us, I would definitely drive up again just for the day for that pub tea and my putter down the river.

Saturday – Whitby Town and home

Our fantastic week had come to an end and we loaded the car back up. We had a last walk to the park and into the old town, stopping to get a caricature done of the children in the old town square from a very talented artist! It was great to then get home so quickly and not face an all day drive.

The week away was just what we needed. The open space, peace and beauty of the landscape in North Yorkshire seemed to somehow restore us all, both me and my husband and also the children, and I felt like we returned as a much happier family than when we had gone. My children declared it their best holiday ever and we will definitely be returning to that part of the coast again soon.


I got lots of ideas on places to go from my friend over at Scarborough and Whitby Mumbler so check out her website too if you are going on holiday to that area.

Mumbler’s Family Session with Relax Kids

Relax Kids Hull & East Yorkshire has just launched in our area – classes, sessions and one-to-ones which focus on the mental health and well being of families and children.

relax kids hull and east riding, building happy confident calm kids and familiesIt’s run by Louise, a very experienced Social Worker and Counsellor (I know her from her time at the House of Light charity). She asked if she could show me what her new sessions were all about and I jumped at the chance as, after the year we’ve had so far, I definitely felt we needed to spend some time thinking about our emotions and learning how to be a calmer happier family! So, last weekend Louise came to do an hours family session with myself, my husband and my 2 children. We explored how our brains work, danced, made each other laugh, blew feathers in the air and spent some time all thinking about how we can be a calmer, happier family…..

When I booked the session I didn’t actually realise the significance of the date – it was on 10th October 2020 which is World Mental Health Day, so a very fitting activity to do on that day. The session aims to build calm and confident children and get the family working together through 7 steps: Move, Play, Stretch, Feel, Breath, Believe and Relax.

We started by moving, jumping around and shaking our bodies to get rid of some energy. Next we all played together and had lots of fun passing a balloon around then making each other laugh, it was great just to all sit and spend time giggling together. As we worked our way through each of the 7 steps we became calmer and focused on stretching, feeling and breathing. Nearer the end we did the believe activities, creating affirmations about ourselves and each other about what we are all good at. This is something I have taken away the most, that we all need to be more positive and remind each other of the things we are good at. My son could only come up with being good at football when he first thought about it, but after talking together we agreed that he was good at being kind and at helping others (which I thought was better than just being a good defender!). Finally we all relaxed then were left to reflect on the session.

As we went through the session Louise described how our brains work using 3 animals as examples – a meerkat, an elephant and an owl. She explained how we can’t calm down until the part of our brain that makes us feel angry, cross or on guard (the meerkat) has calmed down, or how if we have a previous bad memory (the elephant) we can’t move on until it’s been dealt with. Then we can use our clever brains (the owl) to make good decisions!


This year has been unlike anything else we have ever faced. After getting through lockdown, home-schooling, working from home, and now the new fears of more restrictions again, we had been struggling. Tensions have risen, we’ve argued more and I think we all feel just rung out and emotional. I feel that the session with Louise has had a massive impact on us already. In the days since, we have been calmer, much less tense and, as parents, managed situations better when the children argue (I also seem to have consumed less wine!). I feel we have re-focussed and reconnected as a family and I’d definitely recommend Louise’s family sessions to anyone who feels they need it.

Louise came to our house for the hours session (staying well apart), or she does the sessions via zoom if you prefer, the session costs £40. As well as these family sessions Louise also does 121s with children.

From 6th November she is also starting weekly classes for preschoolers in Hessle, find details of those on Mumbler here.


To book the preschool session or to enquire about family sessions and 121s please contact Louise on 07900 920583, email Relaxkidshull@gmail.com or you can get in touch through her facebook page here.

Our Day Out at Sewerby Hall – Summer 2020

It’s the week before the school holidays officially start but, to be honest, my home-school attendance has been dropping so I decided to go for a day out to one of my favourite local places, Sewerby Hall.

We went last Summer on a scorching hot day, my children have been asking to go back so I took my two children and met a friend there (the lovely Ryedale and Scarborough Mumbler) with her two children. There were four children ranging from age 6 to 9 years; they genuinely had a great time and so did the grown ups! Here’s how we got on…..


The first thing to say is it is all open but it is being well controlled and their Covid19 measures impressed me. Entry numbers are limited so in order to guarantee access, all customers are asked to book in advance online before their visit (online purchasing is not available for same day bookings). Annual Pass holders can access the site without having to book in advance, although they will have to join the queues on arrival. As we neared Sewerby the skies turned black and it rained for the first hour so I think that put some less hardy daytripper’s off and it was quiet when we were there. There is also loads of hand sanitising points, one way systems and space…

We started as always in the park, this was better than usual as it was just a park that was open so had massive novelty factor! We had a picnic in there too (under the umbrella). The cafe is open but for takeaways only and a queue outside to limit numbers inside, we did pop in for an ice cream later.

Then it was off to the zoo. This was well managed with a one way system around the zoo and you needed to leave your details with staff before entering for track and trace. My kids loved seeing the animals, this time our favourite was the talking parrot and the rogue, grunty pig in amongst the goats.

It was still raining so we went inside the house – again a one way system around it, you couldn’t move into the next room until the previous family had left it. There was loads of hand sanitiser and none of the usual toys to play with, dress up outfits etc. However we did get to use a new bit of the house, the servants stairs! The staff were so friendly and helpful on the way around, even setting questions about items on show in the rooms for the children to work out the answers to (box ticked for home school learning today after all!).

We came out and the rain had stopped and the sun had come out! So it was off to the gardens and the woodland walk. They had some lovely new wood carvings with very poignant messages and pictures carved on which we spent ages looking at.

On previous visits we’ve stayed inside Sewerby the whole time but with the sun out we thought we’d explore the beach; we’d heard you could access Bridlington North Beach from the Sewerby cliff top but had never tried. There was an extra exit/entrance hut I discovered to leave and re-enter through and we were on the cliff top. Steep steps took us down to the pebble beach and then onto the sand. We spent an hour on sand sculptures and rock hunts, discovering rocks with holes in made by a worm! (tick the box again for home school learning!). On the way back in we saw the land train which also caused a lot of excitement.

We ended by playing on the large fields, I’d packed a frisby and there was a lot of tig and general running around to wear the kids out for the car ride home. We had a long, tiring and thoroughly enjoyable day out! We arrived at 11am and left at 4.30pm (although the kids wanted to stay longer). I’d definitely recommend a day out at Sewerby over the summer holidays, it really did feel like a normal day out again. I was very reassured by the social distancing measures and felt comfortable being there and we’ll hopefully be back again soon.


For more information please call 01262 673769 or visit their website here.

Sewerby Hall, Church Ln, Sewerby, Bridlington YO15 1EA.

Mumbler Review: My Baby Can Dance Hull

Please note this review took place pre-Covid (the venue at Winifred Holtby school is not currently in use but other venues have restarted, latest venues for My Baby Can Dance Hull can be found here).



I took my daughter to My Baby Can Dance classes when she was a toddler but she started school this year and I miss going! Hull mum Pauline has been out and about with her toddler reviewing some classes for me so I suggested she try My Baby Can Dance. She went along and has written a short review about how she found it……

My Baby Can Dance – Review for Mumbler by Pauline and daughter Holly.

Mumbler suggested that I tried My Baby Can Dance and I’m so grateful for it as it’s just awesome! We’ve enjoyed it so much we now have a new membership and are attending regularly.

my baby can dance hullJanine, founder of My Baby Can Dance and our session leader, is just lovely. She is so welcoming at every class, you can clearly see she thoroughly enjoys what she does and what she has built.

The program is such that the class format is easily remembered for the children so both repetition and structure are key. The babies (walkers) and toddlers move and dance to music along with various activities including singing, playing musical instruments and, my daughters new favourites, numbers and colours. It’s the same every week which is brilliant as the children retain what they have learnt leading to continuous development.

At each session your little one’s membership card is signed off and after nine sessions they “graduate” onto the next level and are presented with a certificate and shout out, further encouraging participation.

My little girl thrives on routine and familiarity but hates new environments. Like many 2 year old’s she’s just unsure and wary but by weeks two and three she was up dancing and taking part in the activities. She was remembering some of the games at home, all thanks to a welcoming class in which her confidence has really had a boost.

Not only is it a great activity for the kids to burn off some extra energy but parents and grandparents are encouraged to participate, it’s great fun and so nice to be able to join in with your little one.

my baby can dance hullWe attend the Winifred Holtby Academy class but Janine also, Preston Community Hall and The Broadway Portobello Scout Hut in Hull plus more in surrounding East Riding venues delivered by other teachers. Please note the Winifred Holtby venue has not re-opened post lockdown, the other venues have – update Apr 2021).

Membership is paid half termly. More information and My Baby Can Dance merchandise (which I plan on buying) can be found on the My Baby Can Dance website.

Overall though I cannot recommend these classes enough.


For more information please call Janine on 07738 419545 or visit the My Baby Can Dance website here.


my baby can dance

Our Water Babies Journey

Our friends over at Ryedale Mumbler have reviewed their experience of Water Babies swimming lessons, read all about it below……