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 ‘Epic Day’ out.
More than 3,000 Primary 7 pupils are descending on the site and into the Pentland Hills Regional Park for an innovative project run by the Outdoor Learning Team at the City of Edinburgh 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 so 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.
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. This is then followed by an al fresco hot meal, games and making a camp fire.
The Outdoor Learning Team, including staff from Benmore and Lagganlia, are being supported by Active Schools Coordinators and the Council’s school catering team who provide hot meals to everyone taking part.
Councillor Ian Perry, Convener for Education, Children and Families at the City of Edinburgh Council, said: “This is a special event for those P7 pupils who have missed their residential trips this year due to the pandemic.
“Pupils are taking part in a series of exciting activities which will give them a flavour of the full residential experience in one extended day! 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.”
Jacqueline Scott, Head Teacher of Trinity Primary School 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.”