Unplug for an Outdoor Adventure at Longtown in Herefordshire 

Spending time outdoors in the natural world and providing children with the opportunity to ‘unplug’ has never been as important as it is now.  Connecting with the world around us and a break from the pressures of everyday life supports our mental wellbeing and enables us to ground ourselves in inspiring natural surroundings.  Making time to interact with peers and role models outside the home and school environment presents a variety of benefits to young people. These opportunities can not only provide a long-lasting boost to our resilience and character but can also inspire an appetite for an ongoing active outdoor lifestyle. Children in boats at Longtown Outdoor Learning Centre

The Longtown Outdoor Learning Trust charity provides outstanding opportunities for developing character and resilience at its residential centre in the village of Longtown on the Herefordshire and Monmouthshire border.  Whilst it is positioned on the edge of the beautiful Brecon Beacons National Park it is also surprisingly accessible to schools across England and Wales, just 25 miles from the M50 and 30 miles from the M4. The Centre sits within its own 16 acre site that includes traditional farmland surrounded by rivers, fields and mountains and it’s very own woodland.  The unique natural and rural environment is revealed amongst rolling countryside and mountains as soon as you approach the village.   The centre specialises in programmes of outdoor and adventurous activities that stretch and challenge young people and provide them with opportunities to exceed their own expectations and to build their abilities to cope with the challenges of life as they progress to adulthood.

“Longtown has taught both of my children about perseverance, working as a team and how to overcome their fears, this in turn has made them more confident, agreeable and accepting.  The Centre is a little gem that is well polished and continues to shine” Parent review – Oct 2019 

Our residential programmes enrich the curriculum by bringing the outdoors to life and help young people to achieve their potential by increasing confidence, building resilience and promoting both physical and mental wellbeing.    Our main focus is to deliver the following outcomes to all children and young people who stay with us; 

•    Increased awareness of own skills and abilities
•    Improved confidence and self-esteem 
•    Improved ability to listen and communicate effectively with others
•    Increased awareness and concern for the natural environment
•    Increased resilience and determination
•    Increase independence, responsibility, accountability and time management

“My son loved his 3 days with you this Summer and has asked to go back for the full week next year.... He’s not regarded as sporty at school because he doesn’t like rugby or football! But he loves climbing, canoeing and paddle boarding! He has gained so much confidence in himself, just from 3 days!” Parent review – Aug 2019

dOur outdoor learning opportunities are open to all irrespective of age, gender, ethnicity, disability, religion, financial hardship or social circumstances.  We have experience of working with a range of additional needs including physical health concerns such as limited mobility, visual and hearing impairments as well as with those with mental ill health. Financial assistance is also available of up to 30% of course fees to eligible children via the Longtown Bursary fund.  We also provide all specialist kit, clothing and footwear so there’s no need to bring anything other than warm clothing.

Mike Fawcett, Director of Longtown Outdoor Learning Trust says "The Trust's purpose is to promote well-being and life skills for young people through the challenge of the outdoors.  We believe that well planned programmes of outdoor learning can enhance health and well-being and provide wide-ranging benefits to both individuals and teams.  We are committed to equipping our staff to facilitate the best possible outcomes for all young people and are currently engaged in a CPD programme for all staff focusing on Children and Young People's Mental Health." 
"Spending time in the natural environment - as a resident or visitor - improves our mental health and well-being. It can reduce stress, fatigue, anxiety and depression. It can help boost immune systems, encourage physical activity and may reduce the risk of chronic diseases such as asthma." 
'A Green Future: Our 25 Year Plan to Improve the Environment' (HM Government 2018)'

All of our activities are designed to make the most of our natural setting and the stunning surrounding landscape. Our dedicated, qualified and experienced team of instructors will look after your group every step of the way and will work with your group to build a programme of activities that maximises the potential of each young person and ensures the desired outcomes of your individual visit are met.  

To arrange a viewing of the Centre or for any further information please do contact us on 01873 860225 or email office@longtownoutdoorlearning.co.uk – Our website www.longtownoutdoorlearning.co.uk also provides available accommodation options and a full list of on and off-site activities.