Over 3,000 Edinburgh schoolkids descend on Pentland Hills outdoor adventure area for “epic day out”

Bonaly Scout Centre next to the Pentland Hills is being turned into a huge outdoor adventure arena for thousands of Edinburgh school children as part of a special day out.

Wednesday, 23rd June 2021, 4:55 am
Pupils take part in a variety of activities such as: hillwalking in nearby Pentland hills, archery, climbing wall, bushcraft, crate- stack, nightline and low ropes course. Pic: Michael Gillen
Pupils take part in a variety of activities such as: hillwalking in nearby Pentland hills, archery, climbing wall, bushcraft, crate- stack, nightline and low ropes course. Pic: Michael Gillen

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More than 3,000 Primary 7 pupils descended on the site and into the Pentland Hills Regional Park for an innovative project run by the Outdoor Learning Team at Edinburgh City Council.

During the pandemic, and in line with Scottish Government guidance, there have been no P7 residential trips to our outdoor learning centres at Lagganlia and Benmore.

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Schoolchidren have been enjoying the day. Pic: Michael Gillen

The team decided to bring the outdoor activities to the city and provide a taste of the full residential experience in one extended 'Epic Day' out.

The day was packed full of activities including hillwalking in nearby Pentland hills, archery, climbing wall, bushcraft, crate-stack, nightline and low ropes course.

Parent Catherine Heymans said her son had “the most epic of all epic days” and came home on a complete high.

Peter Casebow, chair of the Bonaly Scout Centre, said: “It's been fantastic over the last few weeks to see and hear Bonaly Scout Centre full of young people having fun and learning again.

Some of the children enjoying their 'epic day out' on Tuesday. Pictures: Michael Gillen

All activities were followed by an al fresco hot meal, games and making a camp fire.

Councillor Ian Perry, convener for Education, Children and Families at the council said: “This is a special event for those P7 pupils who have missed their residential trips this year due to the pandemic.

“It’s been an amazing effort by our Outdoor Learning Team and everyone else involved to pull all this together and I know the pupils will love every minute of it.”

Headteacher of Trinity Primary School Jacqueline Scott said: “"A huge thanks to everyone for providing such a memorable day for our Trinity P7s. From the minute we arrived to the minute we left, the organisation was incredible.

"The day provided absolutely the right balance between allowing the pupils some independence and an element of risk taking whilst also encouraging co-operation and ensuring safety. They arrived back at school buzzing with excitement. ‘The best day ever’ was reported to many parents and carers. The commitment and enthusiasm of the group leaders was infectious.”

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