hughendon manor

February Half Term Activities and Events In The South

I don’t know about you but February half term is my least favourite school holiday.  The weather is generally rubbish and it seems like summer is a long, long way off.  Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love having the kids home from school.  It’s always a pleasure spending time with them, but we love to be out and about doing things.  Wet dreary weather can really dampen our spirits though, so it’s important to plan ahead for indoor entertainment.  I’ve spent hours researching half term activities and events in the South for next week.  The list is pretty epic! Look out for the free events labelled in bold writing if like me you are saving the pennies.  There are also a number of events for celebrating Chinese New Year.  You can find out more about Chinese New Year in my blog post here Celebrating Chinese New Year.

Saturday 10th February

  • Interactive storytelling, dragon dancing, animal trail and more at The Oxfordshire Museum in Woodstock 2-4pm.  FREE EVENT
  • Make your own beast in the crafty kitchen at Roald Dahl Museum & Story Centre between 11am-4pm.  Included in museum entry fee.
  • Wantage Lego Club at Vale and Downland Museum 9:30-10:30am.  Please register attendance as space limited.  FREE EVENT  (donations to the museum welcome). * FULLY BOOKED*
  • Listen to author Paula Metcalf reading her new story Dog In Boots at Waterstones in Oxford 3-4pm.  After the story she will help children make their own Valentines cards.
  • Miniature train celebration day at Beale Park.  £5pp entry and lots of fun activities and entertainers to celebrate the new train.

Sunday 11th February

  • Make your own beast in the crafty kitchen at Roald Dahl Museum & Story Centre between 11am-4pm.  Included in museum entry fee.
  • Celebrate a beastly party at the Roald Dahl Museum & Story Centre with beastie bingo, beetle drive, and other interactive party games.  £3 per person plus museum entry fee.
  • Watch Disney’s Moana in the planetarium at Winchester Science Centre 9am.  Tickets £5 each or £2 if you are also paying admission for entry to the rest of the science centre.

Monday 12th February

  • Story telling and crafts in the kitchen at Cogges Farm 10am-2pm.  Entry only £2 per person.  Manor house open only.
  • Mud pie Monday at the Earth Trust, Little Wittenham.10-11:30am.  Drop in session, suggested donation of £4 per child.  Don’t forget your welly boots!
  • Children’s author Neal Zetter will be performing his poems at Roald Dahl Museum & Story Centre at 12pm, 1:30pm and 3pm.  Followed by helping your children create short fun poems of their own. £3 plus normal admission fee.
  • Urban art workshop at the Museum of Oxford from 12pm.  Have a go at street style art and see you art displayed in a new exhibition.  FREE EVENT but online booking highly advised.

Tuesday 13th February

  • Owl detectives workshop with Science Oxford at Cogges Farm for 6-10 year olds.  £5.50 per child.  Please book in advance.
  • Owl detectives at Sutton Courtenay Environmental Education Centre.  Dissect owl pellets and work out what the owls have been eating.  Suitable for ages 6+,  £4 per child (adults free).  10-11am and 1-2pm
  • Inflatable play centre at Didcot Leisure Centre 10am-4pm. £5.50 per child for 1.5 hours.  Tickets must be booked in advance.
  • Fossils day at Banbury Museum.  Handle fossils and crystals.  See them up close under a microscope.  Mask making and fossil dig activities (keep your fossil) £3.50 per child.  Handling activities free.  Take your own fossils along for an expert to identify for you.  11am-pm and 2-4pm
  • Mythical monsters craft workshop at Abingdon County Hall Museum.  10-12:30pm and 1-3pm.  FREE EVENT Drop-in session, donations welcome.
  • Play taster session at The Berin Centre, Berinsfield.  Interactive games and activities.  1:30-2:15pm FREE EVENT.
  • Tudor day at the Vale and Downland Museum in Wantage 10am-3pm.  Meet the costumed Tudor re-enactors and take part in Tudor activities and crafts.  Drop in FREE EVENT (donations to the museum welcome).
  • Winter activity trail at Earth Trust, Little Wittenham 10am-4pm.  £4 per child.  Collect your map and explorer backpack from the Earth Trust Centre during bookable slots up until 2pm.
  • The annual pancake race in Wallingofrd will take place at 10am in the Market Place.

Wednesday 14th February

  • Chinese New Year party with stories and activities at the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford 1-4pm.  FREE drop in event. Donations welcome.
  • Story telling and crafts in the kitchen at Cogges Farm 10am-2pm.  Entry only £2 per person.  Manor house open only.
  • Make your own crocodile clay pot to celebrate the 40th anniversary of The Enormous Crocodile at the Roald Dahl & Story Centre.  £3 per person plus museum entry fee.
  • Open day at the Rock Barn in Witney 10am-12pm.  Let the kids try out different musical instruments.  FREE EVENT
  • Steam day at Didcot Railway Centre.  Normal admission fees apply.
  • Virtual reality experience day at Banbury Museum with Space Studio Banbury.  Drop-in session 11am-1pm and 2-3:30pm.  If it becomes busy timed entry slots may be put in place.
  • Wildlife Wednesdays at Mowbray Field Nature Reserve, Didcot 10-12pm with the Earth Trust.  Suggested donation £2 per child.
  • Meet the bugs at Beale Park 1:30-3:30pm.  Meet snakes, giant snails and tarantulas!  Free with normal admission.
  • Trash and treasure activities including make your own bling and a trail around the Oxfordshire Museum. 10:30am and 2pm.  Craft activities £3 per child, Trail sheets £1 each.  Entry to the museum is free.
  • Open afternoon at the Soldiers Of Oxfordshire Museum from 2pm.  Activities for children age 3-9 years cost £2 per child.
  • Create your very own characters in this inspiring workshop at Cornerstone Arts Centre, Didcot  2pm for age 7-11 year olds.  Cost £6 per child.

Thursday 15th February

  • Chinese New Year party with stories and activities at the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford 1-4pm.  FREE drop in event. Donations welcome.
  • Make a Chinese dragon fire-clock at the Museum Of The History Of Science in Oxford. Drop in event 12-4pm. £3 donation for materials.
  • Make 3 different bird feeders to take home with you at the Earth Trust, Little Wittenham. £5 per family.  Booking essential, time slots are 10-11:30am or 1-2:30pm.
  • Reptile Roadshow at Roald Dahl Museum & Story Centre 11am and 1pm.  £4.50 per person plus museum entry fee.  Booking in advance highly recommended.
  • Urban art workshop at the Museum of Oxford from 12pm.  Have a go at street style art and see you art displayed in a new exhibition.  FREE EVENT but online booking highly advised.
  • Learn how to print the old fashioned way at the Old Bodleian Library in Oxford.  11am for ages 8+.  Booking essential.

Friday 16th February

  • Enjoy interactive storytelling, dragon dancing, learning mandarin, making lanterns and more at The Story Museum in Oxford.  1-5pm FREE EVENT
  • Bright Sparks science work shop about the heart at Didcot Civic Hall 9am-3:30pm for ages 5-11 years.   £28 per child for the day (take packed lunch).  Interactive demonstrations and hands on activities to make and take home.
  • Make your own crocodile clay pot to celebrate the 40th anniversary of The Enormous Crocodile at the Roald Dahl & Story Centre.  £3 per person plus museum entry fee.
  • Join in with lots of singing fun for under 5s at Rhyme Time at Didcot Library 9:30-10am and 10:30-11am.
  • Forest school for under 5s at Earth Trust, Little Wittenham 10-12pm.  £4 suggested donation per child.
  • Soldiers Of Oxfordshire Museum kids club 10-12:30pm £8 per child age 6-9 years (no adults allowed!).  This months theme is rockets.

Saturday 17th February

  • Blenheim Palace Chinese New Year Celebration.  Enjoy a traditional Chinese lion dance with a drummer and sample some Chinese street food. More details here:Blenheim Palace Chinese New Year Celebration
  • Enjoy interactive storytelling, dragon dancing, learning mandarin, making lanterns and more at The Ashmolean Museum in Oxford.  9-5pm FREE EVENT
  • Thomas steam day at Didcot Railway Centre.  Advance booking essential.
  • Meet everyone’s favourite dog Kipper at the Story Museum at 11am and 2pm.  Free with admission.

Sunday 18th February

  • Enjoy interactive storytelling, dragon dancing, learning mandarin, making lanterns and more at The Ashmolean Museum in Oxford.  9-5pm FREE EVENT
  • Seed swap at Cornerstone Arts Centre.  Come and swap your surplus seeds or choose something new to grow from the donations.  Help make new signs for Didcot’s herb and fruit garden using wood and chalk pens.  11-2pm.  FREE EVENT
  • Thomas steam day at Didcot Railway Centre.  Advance booking essential.
  • Meet everyone’s favourite dog Kipper at the Story Museum at 11am and 2pm.  Free with admission.

Ongoing events

  • Billy and The Minpins exhibition at the Roald Dahl Museum. 7th September 2017- 15th April 2018
  • Vintage Star Wars toys and cinema posters exhibition at the Willis Museum and Sainsbury Gallery in Basingstoke.  13th January – 14th April 10am-4pm. FREE EVENT
  • Children’s Tudor animal trail at The Vyne in Basingstoke.  21st November 2017- 3rd June 2018.  Normal admission fees apply.
  • Saturday 10th – Sunday 18th February 2018 Alphabet I spy in the Waterperry Gardens, near Wheatley.   Normal entry fees apply.  Trail £2 per child including a prize when they complete it.
  • Saturday 10th – Sunday 25th February 2018  Star Cars event at British Motor Museum .  Daily car crafts to take home 10am-4pm.  Make a star car out of Lego.  Design a ‘car for a star’ and add your design to the wall of fame.  Family guided tours with Lady Penelope or Parker at 11:45am and 1:30pm daily.  Star car trail around the museum.  Activities included in museum entry.
  • Saturday 10th – Sunday 18th February superhero week at Waddesdon Manor.  Follow the trail and solve the clues and riddles to claim your reward.  £3 per child plus normal admission fee applies.
  • Scarecrows and lambing days at Roves Farm Saturday 10th- Sunday 18th February.  Normal admission fees apply.
  • Lambing and baby animal half term fun at 4 Kingdoms Adventure Park.  Normal admission fees apply.  Saturday 10th – Sunday 18th February
  • Half term bird themed trail at Beale Park.  50p for the trail and you will be entered in a draw to win prizes.  Normal park admission fee applies.  Saturday 10th – Sunday 18th February.
  • Operation Earth at the Museum of Natural History in Oxford from 1pm each day.  Discover incredible things about our planet.  Monday 12th – Wednesday 14th February.
  • World Stories at Pitt Rivers Museum in Oxford from 1pm each day.  Animate your very own story inspired by tales from around the world.  Monday 12th- Wednesday 14th February.
  • Make a house for a hedgehog to hibernate in at Hughendon Manor National Trust site.  £3 per person (normal entry fees apply if you are not a National Trust member). Monday 12th – Friday 16th February.

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