The evening before we left for France, the children and I went to the Beach at Brent Cross with friends for a spot of funfair action. It was the first dry day in a long time, so we made the most of it.
The Beach at Brent Cross is a pop-up family-friendly urban festival taking place in London every summer. This year, it will be there until 10th September. We went last year just before it opened to the public, and we loved it so much we couldn’t wait to see what they had in store this year.
The great thing about the Beach at Brent Cross is they have something for everyone, with over 25 different rides for toddlers, children, teenagers and adults. The rides range from merry-go-rounds to rides from the whole family to enjoy together to terrifying-looking roller coasters.
It’s open until 10 p.m. every night and you can park in the free car park at Brent Cross. I used postcode NW4 3FP on my SatNav and parked at the very end of John Lewis car park, in parking zone A. Entry costs £3 per person, and tokens are £1.20 each, or £10 for 10 tokens. The rides we went on were all 2, 3 or 4 tokens.
Had it been warmer, I would have packed swimming costumes and towels for the children so they could have enjoyed the paddling pool, water balloon game and played in the sand, but it was still too chilly for that. Don’t we all love our British summer?
There are food and drink stalls there but we didn’t eat as we’d had dinner just before we went. Crevette spent some of his birthday money on marshmallows and candy floss and shared them with everyone, and my friend Anne got is a few treats and a cup of tea for the two of us when we started getting cold.
The first ride the children went on was the wave-swinger.
They all went round and round the merry-go-round a fair few times as Anne and I sat on the grass sofa (that’s an actual thing!), chatting about anything and everything.
It was my first time going on a Helter skelter. The classic seaside favourite is not something you’d find in France, so I’d never been on one. I absolutely loved climbing to the top of this huge structure, enjoying the views and whizzing all the way down the spiral slide with Wriggly, both of us screaming with delight. We went a couple of times.
The Fun House was a firm favourite with our whole party, with its trick mirrors, shifting floors, crazy stairs and slide. We really struggled to get the children out of it as they kept going again and again!
The prospect of trying the Bungee Trampolines was the only thing that convinced them to leave the fun house. They absolutely loved being proppelled high into the air.
After that, we all went on the Donkey Ride twice and laughed so much on our mules that were galloping around the track.
The children all loved driving in pairs in the beach buggies, accelerating at every turn and bumping into each other in a much safer way than they would have in bumper cars.
All children had the time of their lives on the Bumper Boats. Each little one was the captain of their own boat as they bumped and dodged each other in an inflatable pool.
Although there was a bit of a queue, the Water Walkers were a hit for everyone apart from Wriggly, who ended up coming out after 5 minutes. The older children all had so much fun walking on water in their own individual bubbles though!
Don’t just take my word for it. Here is what the children thought:
Wriggly, pointing at the photo of the Helter Skelter: “I liked dat one!”
Jumpy: “My favourite was the swing ride!”
Beanie: “I loved the Magic House and the jumping.”
Crevette: “My favourite thing was the Helter Skelter, the giant bubbles on water and the trampoline!”
Disclosure: We were given press passes to the Beach at Brent Cross so we could enjoy all rides we fancied, but all opinions and photos are my own.