Standing proudly in the heart of our city is Peterborough Cathedral. A building literally bursting with history from when the construction first started in 1118 through to King Henry V111 all the way to 2017. It is a must-see for anyone either visiting or living in Peterborough. Growing up in Peterborough I have been inside the cathedral so many times for events such as Christingles and hearing my niece sing in a choir but, I will also be the first to admit I haven’t seen all of it. I tend to go as far as the font and then light a candle for those family members we no longer have.
This week we were invited to come to Peterborough Cathedral so the boys could be the first to try the new Explorer Backpacks being introduced. The aim of the Explorer backpack is to encourage children (7years and under) and families to come into the cathedral and learn more about it’s history. The bags contain an Activity Booklet which gives you 6 things to find and do. It isn’t at all time consuming and can be completed in under an hour, So perfect for younger children as their attention can wain a little on longer activities. But it is a great opportunity to explore and on a rainy day, it is a great activity to do indoors.
As well as the activity booklet the Explorer Backpacks also contain;
- Tape Measure,
- Magnifying Glass
- Colour Paddle,
- and a Benedict Bear soft toy.
All the items are used throughout the trail and they come in really handy! The activity booklet is written in big easy to read letters. Oliver found the text simple to read and understand which for a 6-year-old is great! It really got him involved and he was keen to reach each instruction.
Although the age of the backpacks are for 7 and under Jack, who is 8 still enjoyed taking part and learnt a lot from it. Peterborough Cathedral do offer a separate guide for older children called Monks, Mischief & Marauders! It costs £2 for the guide but contains lots of facts and activities. It is written aimed at children so easy to understand.
The boys found having Benedict Bear in the bags a fantastic addition! Oliver couldn’t put him down and became rather attached to him. The other items within the bag are all child friendly items. The magnifying glass is big and chunky, the torch and binoculars are child sized so not too heavy. We did feedback about the tape measure being a little too small for what it is needed so hopefully that will be amended as soon as they can.
Our favourite task was all about the Nave Ceiling. You had to find 3 pictures using the binoculars to give you an idea on what to look for one of the pictures was a Donkey playing a violin. Who would have expected that on the ceiling of the Cathedral? There is a mirror on wheels so for younger children (or those who are not able too use binoculars) you can wheel it down the aisle and use it to help see the ceiling more clearly.
The Explorer Backpacks are available from within the Cathedral itself. As you walk in there is a shop to your left, here is where you can pick them up. The Explorer Backpacks are free to hire but do require a £5 refundable deposit. The deposit can be paid either by Cash or leaving your bank card securely. When finished you can come bring the bag back and pick up either your deposit or card. Simple.
Becket’s Tea Room
Using the Explorer Backpack is a great way to spend time in town. Afterwards you can have a cup of tea at Beckets Tea Room! A hidden gem within the grounds of Peterborough Cathedral. We had never been before this week and we will definitely be back! The staff were so friendly and happy and nothing was too much bother for them. They are also trialing free cooking/craft workshops with this half term (October) making Cookies, completely free of charge!
*we were given a gift voucher for Becket’s Tea Room as a thank you for coming and trialling the new Explorer BackPacks*