Today we joined Willow Dene parents in a magical woodland ramble near their school. Fully kitted out in wellies and walking shoes we ventured off the beaten track, through the brand new-new forest school area and into the wild woods next to Dukes Farm. It was really good fun. We helped each other navigate the paths, branches and undergrowth, even fording a small stream. It felt like we were miles out of London in the countryside surrounded by lush greenery and the woody fragrance of the forest.
The biggest surprise was coming across a group of quite docile horses in a clearing. One of them took a liking to parent Sheila and followed her to the end of the forest! We cut through the vegetable gardens of Dukes Farm, assisted by a friendly gardener who allowed us to use their gate to the exit. On the way we took a peek at the organic crops getting ready for the summer harvest.
At the end of the walk, by a bed full of enormous wild poppies, we met some of the people who run Animal Days out. This is a Greenwich charity that provides animal experiences for children, including SEND specific sessions. We had a chat, a good look at their goats and checked out some brand new pigs who seemed very happy in their muddy new home.
On the way back to the school one of our group did some skip-hunting and came across not only a very pretty lampshade to recycle, but also a microwave oven left out for a passer-by to take! We ended the walk in the cosy Family Room at Willow Dene with packed lunches and a well-deserved cup of tea. We all had a good laugh together about our experiences on the walk. We will definitely do it again – come with us next time!