i will never forget lakeside!

Full of fun laughter & happiness: Year 7s Oliver, Abigail and Eshan tell us about the trip to the Lake District

It's been great seeing all the photos from last week's Year 7 Residential trip to the Lakes and now that they're back, we can hear about some of their highlights:


I know that everyone enjoyed Lakeside!  And I also know that everyone enjoyed it in different ways. Most of Year 7's favourite experience was King Swing: you put on a harness and get flung across high in the air! For me though, I absolutely loved the group canoeing. It was fun to go onto a lake and paddle around. Some people weren't keen on the wet weather, and we did get soaked, but although we got very wet, very muddy, and very dirty, it was a very enjoyable experience!

Full of fun, laughter, and happiness. Everything you would have wanted on a Year 7 residential trip! 


On the way to Lakeside, me and my friends were all full of chatter as we were excited to find out what activities we would be doing there. Before anyone was allowed off the bus, we all had to learn the Lakeside chant which is:


There was a huge range of different activities. My favourites included:

Archery: which is when I hit the bullseye and the arrow went straight through!

Raft building: fun but ours was a disaster as it broke, and we all fell into the water!

King Swing: during the king swing, you have to wear a harness as three ropes are attached to you and one of them is the swing. Then your group pull you up by a rope that is attached to a pulley and your harness. When you want to stop, you shout stop, and you lift up a clip and your group will let you go. When you are swinging you can go upside down!

Eventually, it was time to go home. Lots of people were tired, so a few of them fell asleep, but most people stayed awake talking about all their activities to their friends.

All I know is that I will never forget Lakeside!


Arriving at Lakeside, it was a nice centre, looking much like a mansion. We played football until lunchtime, and I eagerly waited for my room. Once we’d seen our rooms and had taken up our bags, we went out for our first activity: bushcraft. It started nicely and flew by. We were tasked (in groups of three) with building a home big enough for a hedgehog or snail to live in. My group built one using a plant called bracken as cover. It worked tremendously well, and we went on to build a fire. Mine took the longest, taking twenty minutes, but it was the biggest of them all. It was also the biggest the instructor had ever seen. We then had our tea (burgers) and did our next activity. Intuition. We had to do a series of challenges that required using the brain. It was as simple as that. We had hot chocolate, did three quizzes and went off to sleep.

The next day came. Our first activity was Raft building. We collected 4 wood beams and laid them on crates, putting them in a rectangular formation. Then we tied some knots, and the raft was ready to put into the water. It didn’t float, so what we needed was the six barrels that we had collected. We put them under the raft, before finally sitting down on the small raft. It wasn’t the type of raft you’d picture when thinking of a raft. It had a massive hole in the middle, and the only place to sit was on the wooden beams. It was remarkably simple. We used our paddles and worked together as a team to follow the instructor in her kayak, making sure to keep controlled.  

And the next activity was... drum roll please... the obstacle course! It was near a swamp. My group stepped away from the giant puddle and area of mud: they did not want to get their shoes dirty. But my shoes were already dirty anyway, so I decided to step into the mud. I felt the mud close around my foot, so I panicked. I pulled my foot out, my jaw dropping at the sight of my socks. No shoe! Everyone chuckled and gasped. The instructor waited a few seconds for the laughter to stop and to let me find my shoe. I couldn’t find it, so another student helped me find it. We scooped mud and then... Voila! Shoe gotten. I pulled my other foot out, careful not to get it stuck too. Then we did the course.

It was a surprisingly normal course. Just balancing. That was the case, until the instructor decided to prank us as we neared the end. She told us to squat and move. But that wasn’t enough. She basically transformed it into Simon says, telling us to squat and spin around 360 degrees at the same time. Her plan worked: two people fell off. But I didn’t. Could I make it? Could I be the first to pass this excruciatingly difficult course? As it turned out, no. I just fell a second after they did. Shocking news, right? That was the day done.

I was excited for the next day. We did the challenge course – a series of obstacles that could only be overcome with teamwork – and did the activity I had been waiting for: the King Swing. From what I had heard, it was amazing. And as it drew closer, I was amazed. There were three trees, put in a triangle. They held a rope. A group was already there, so we waited and watched. The person hung onto a rope, held by their harness. Then they soared into the sky, hurling towards the field, before being pulled back by the rope. Just like a swing but taken to the next level. And then another person did their turn. It was now time for our turn. I was used as the demonstration for putting on the harness and the instructor showed everyone how to put it on. He ranked us from the order of least confident to most confident. He asked us how confident we were but told us to close our eyes to keep the votes to our own opinion and not others. Even though I was extremely confident, I went first. The others’ job was to pull back the rope that held me. I asked to go the maximum height, and the instructor nodded. The group pulled back the rope smoothly. Then we reached the maximum height allowed. He told me to pull the black lever whenever I wanted to swing. And I did. But I did not soar high!

“No! At what point did I ask you to let go of the rope? Now we’ll have to do his turn again!” the instructor shouted to the group as they let go of the rope. I redid my turn, and they did not let go of the rope until he told them to. It was amazing. I soared high, carefree and happy. He told me how to flip myself upside down.

“Flip your body upside down when the rope changes direction, then put your legs on the yellow wire.” he said to me. I tried to, but I forgot to put my legs on the yellow wire to stop them from being pushed down by gravitational force. I wasn’t able to do it, but it was wonderful.

On the way home the coach was delayed so it was a bit of a wait but the cheering when it arrived was deafening! By the time we got back, we were exhausted. I went home, took a steaming hot shower, and had a nice talk with my family about the trip.

And that was my exciting trip. An awesome experience at Lakeside. I would highly recommend it for Year 7s!

A fantastic experience for all, with huge thanks to our staff and the Centre for providing this marvellous opportunity for Year 7!