It may seem like we’ve just got over the Christmas holidays, but another school break is already upon us. Here are five things to do in Otley for February half-term 2020
The Otley Family Riverside Trail
The Otley Family Riverside Trail – available from Otley Core, Otley Courthouse arts centre and various shops around town – consists of a circular walk along the River Wharfe as it flows through Otley. The one-mile circular trail around Wharfemeadows Park, Gallows Hill Nature Area, Garnett Wharfe and Tittybottle Park highlights some of the riverside’s most interesting features, from the love locks on Otley Bridge to the Archimedes Screws of the Wharfe’s only hydroelectric plant and the origins of the Tittybottle Park name. With lists of things to see, a word search, and chance to draw a picture of Otley Bridge and submit if for publication on Visit Otley’s social media, it’s sure to keep the children busy for a good couple of hours.
Available from Otley Core, 11 Orchard Gate LS21 3NX
Learn how to DJ at the Courthouse
Children wanting to be the next Pete Tong or Annie Mac can take a spin on DJing with Introduction to DJ Skills classes at Otley Courthouse over half-term. The two two-hour classes – at 11am and 4pm on Tuesday February 18 – are aimed at children over 10 years old who get to work in pairs on sets of digital decks. Classes are run by DJ School UK and the tutors have a huge library of music on hand so kids can practice with their favourite tunes.
Tue February 18 2020, 11am-1pm or 4pm to 6pm, £5. See www.ticketsource.co.uk/otleycourthouse/
Paint your own pottery
Puffin Pottery on Boroughgate is a paint-your-own-pottery studio in the heart of Otley with a range of items to paint that suit all pockets, as well as a café serving hot and cold drinks, cakes and snacks. Over half-term, the studio will be open on a walk-in basis where you choose what you want to paint and simply pay for the pottery and materials (booking is still recommended as it can get busy). There’s also a children’s mosaic workshop on Wednesday February 19 from 10am to noon. It’s priced at £15 per child and places need to be booked in advance.
Puffin Pottery, 2b Boroughgate LS21 3AL. See facebook.com/puffinpotteryleeds/
Take in an adventure on the Chevin
Otley Chevin, a 280m forested millstone ridge overlooking the town, is a paradise for explorers. Lined with trails, cycle tracks and bridle paths, visitors can discover some of the oldest Bronze Age rock art in the country in the form of the Knotties Stone, or take in some magnificent wooden sculptures by local artist Shane Green. On Tuesday February 18 and Wednesday 19, there will also be two holiday club Forest School classes meeting at the Chevin’s community-run White House café. Classes take place from 10am to 3pm and cost £25 per child.
The White House, Jonny Lane off Birdcage Walk, Otley LS21 3JL. See chevinforestschool.co.uk
Bounce around with soft play
On inclement days, there’s the chance to avoid the weather at the soft play area at Buttercups on Westgate. Aimed at children aged up to six years old, there are two separate play areas depending on their age, as well as a new role-play section with shops, houses, a building site and a police station. While the kids are playing, adults can take a break in the centre’s café that serves hot and cold drinks, buns and fresh hot food.
Buttercups, Westgate Arcade, Otley LS21 3AT. See buttercupsotley.co.uk/