Summertime is made for family time. This year, organise a jam-packed calendar bursting with memories thanks to a little help from Barnsley Museums.
With six unique attractions to discover, there is something to keep visitors big and small entertained throughout the school holidays.
From arts and crafts to sensory trails, get hands-on with heritage and delve into the many exhibitions and activities being hosted by Barnsley Museums.
Go and explore at Cannon Hall
What better way to spend a summer’s day than by exploring the beautiful grounds at Cannon Hall, park and gardens. Pack a picnic or visit the two takeaway cafes for a fun, free day out.
Take a walk around the parklands, explore the monster trail, check out the family activities inside the Hall, see the swans on the lakes, and let the little ones let off steam in the play area.
This year there is a new multisensory trail for you to try throughout the summer holidays from Saturday 23rd July until the end of August. Download your free map or grab one from the museum and head out in the grounds to make an echo in the deer shelter, go wildlife spotting in the Fairyland ponds, use your nose to escape the maze in the walled garden, and make music in the new woodland area.
Young naturalists are invited to learn more about the amazing creatures that live in the grounds of Cannon Hall at free drop-in craft sessions on Mondays in August in the walled garden from 10.30am until 2.30pm. Children can create a beautiful butterfly or magical minibeast to take home or leave as part of an art installation that will grow through the summer.
Inspired by the beautiful walled gardens, ceramic artist Sally Storr is hosting two clay workshops for children aged between seven and 15 on Saturday 6th and Thursday 11th August at 10am–12pm and 1pm–3pm. Suitable clothes for messy clay play are advised and accompanying adults are encouraged to join in. It’s for £15 per child and booking is essential. Check out the Cannon Hall website for more details.
And don’t forget Pear Day in September. The annual free event is back on Sunday 25th September between 11am and 3pm where visitors can hunt for pear guardians in the walled garden pear trail, try their hand at pear-inspired crafts, and meet Victorian cook Charity Blake as she cooks up a pear storm in the Victorian kitchens.
Find out more at www.cannon-hall.com
Be the star you are at Cooper Gallery
Take a visit to Barnsley’s interactive art gallery and let your budding artists’ creativity flow at one of the Cooper Gallery’s various art sessions for families.
Stay and play in the outdoor sculpture garden with challenges to build the tallest tower or make the most colourful creations. Bring a picnic or grab lunch at the two on-site cafes. The garden will be open during normal gallery times, but there are also free sculpture drop-in sessions led by gallery staff on Tuesdays throughout the school holidays from 10am-12pm and 1pm-3pm.
For kids who’ve ever dreamt of being a cowboy, fairy or even an arctic explorer, now is their chance to be a shining star. Dance artist Tara Baker is hosting two fun sessions on Friday 5th August where boogie babes can go on an imaginative adventure with dance. The sessions are free and you can book your child’s place with the Cooper Gallery team. Under fives session at 11am and under sevens at 1pm.
You can also pick up a discovery pack for little visitors to see the artworks in a whole new way.
While you’re there, why not go on a voyage to see Barnsley town centre as never before with a new free art trail. Penny’s Sculpture Quest is on from Saturday 23rd July until the end of August, based on an art-loving peregrine found flying above the town hall. Aimed at little legs and enquiring minds, the trail takes you around some of the amazing public art on display in Barnsley. Collect your trail leaflet from The Cooper Gallery or The Glass Works.
Find out more at www.cooper-gallery.com
Tales of the waterways at Elsecar
Elsecar is a great family day out and this summer learn more about its fascinating history and the bargee families who called the waterways of the village their home through free storytelling activities. On Monday 22nd and Tuesday 23rd August, actor Chris Cade will be giving interactive performances throughout the day, capturing the imagination of young visitors.
While at Elsecar, be sure to explore the many shops and cafes on-site, as well as the beautiful play area and reservoir in the nearby park.
Find out more at www.elsecar-heritage.com
Have a SENSational time at Experience Barnsley
As the home of Barnsley’s history, visit Experience Barnsley in the iconic town hall to learn more about the town’s past with an eclectic mix of interactive displays.
Inspired by the Slazenger tennis ball that was made in Barnsley, children can take part in a colourful tennis themed circus skills workshop with Greentop Circus on Tuesday 2nd and Thursday 18th August from 10am-12pm or 1pm-3pm.
On Monday 8th August, there will also be a multi-sensory experience for children with profound and multiple learning disabilities. With two one-hour sessions at 11am and 1pm, places are limited so booking is essential.
There are also games, trails, dressing up and books to enjoy on every visit.
Find out more at www.experience-barnsley.com
Discover @ The Glass Works
Shopping with kids in tow doesn’t sound like everyone’s idea of fun. But if you’re in town doing some errands at The Glass Works or Barnsley Markets, why not bring the kids along and stop off at the new pop-up museum galleries in The Glass Works.
Throughout the summer holidays there will be drop-in craft activities to make, with the Glass Works gallery spaces open seven days a week. You’ll also find fun games such table football or block building.
Open Monday to Saturday 10am-5.30pm and Sunday 10.30am-4.30pm.
Enlighten your senses at Worsbrough Mill
Get outdoors this summer with a visit to the splendid country park at Worsbrough Mill with its reservoir and historic working flour mill. Perfect for a walk, and a must-visit for dogs, the 60-acre reservoir is a haven of wildlife.
Why not have a go at the free multi-sensory trail where you can listen to the sound of the rushing water, look out for wildlife around the reservoir, see nature close up with the magnifying posts, and feel the breeze while stood on the pier.
Pick up a pack from the visitor centre and explore the country park’s nature themed rubbing trail. Have fun in the play area or stop off at the tea room with outdoor seating.
The mill itself is open every Wednesday to Sunday where you can see the waterwheel in motion and chat to the miller. There is also a mill shop selling stoneground flour and baking products for your upcoming bakes.
Find out more at www.worsbrough-mill.com