Monday, 12 May 2014

#CountryKids Camping in Derbyshire

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

After last week's trial run this weekend we headed to Callow Top Holiday Park near Ashbourne for our first ever single parent camping weekend with Single With Kids. On arrival it looked surprisingly familiar and I realised that I had been there 8 years ago with my then husband, his eldest 3 and my daughter! This time we were in a group of about 30 families in a field on our own at the top of the site. We were the last ones to arrive after our 2.5 hour drive and just managed to get the tent up before the sun set:

sunset Ashbourne

My children very quickly made friends with the 6 and 7 year old boys in the nearest tents and played games whilst I rustled up a very late BBQ. Then we went to the communal area to toast marshmallows and get to know the other families:

round the campfire

My son eventually decided he was tired so I put him safely to bed in the tent before finishing off around the fire with my daughter who stayed up a bit later. I had forgotten how much fun it is trying to get into a sleeping bag in a tiny tent without waking the children! We all slept well and woke up to the thought of bacon:

frying bacon

That took so long to cook that my children had managed a football match with the dad from next door plus their 2 new friends! Then we all decided to head to the outdoor pool, this is luckily heated but I was one of the few adults brave enough to get in with the children:

Callow Top Holiday Park pool

Due to the weather I had to combine wellies with my swimming gear which really is not a winning combination!

A much needed hot shower (for the princely sum of 20p!) and then it was time to head back to the tents:

Regatta tent

I was jealous of how much warmer and roomier the official camper van was:

single with kids camper van

A sudden hail storm had us diving into our cars and inspired a few of us to head off site! I will blog this one separately. On the way back we stopped at a nearby pub as the the thought of trying to cook in the rain did not appeal... The other parents then suggested trying out the on site pub before going for a session of Bingo in the bar! This meant a chance to watch Eurovision at the same time. Back in our camp we joined in the conversation around the fire again:

campfire conversation

In the morning it was so wet and windy that I failed to even heat water for a coffee! Instead we shared a full cooked breakfast in the bar. This gave us enough energy to pack up our soggy tent and load up the car between showers.

We made lots of new friends and now I am trying to work out how to afford to go on the August bank holiday weekend to Northamptonshire to meet up with lots of them again... I have to say that group camping was so much more relaxing than going on my own as a single adult. The children met others of a similar age and had a great if shattering time.


  1. It's amazing how quickly you "loose" your children at a campsite to their new BFFs. It's one aspect of camping I love.

    I admire you for taking a tent! One of the main drivers for us getting a small caravan was that I fear having to set up the tent and all the gear on my own, when OH hasn't got holidays and I head off solo with the kids.

  2. This tent v easy to put up but not much room... Jealous of your caravan ;-)


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