Abbeycroft Leisure has extended their free Adventure Days programme to include October, February and May half-term holidays, thanks to additional funding from local charity, Newmarket Charitable Foundation.

Children eligible for free school meals, or those otherwise in need, are offered a free day of outdoor activity including lunch each half term, with the aim of providing enriching, safe and fun activities as well as a nutritious lunch, which they help to make themselves.

Abbeycroft already runs the programme across eight locations in West Suffolk and Babergh with funding from The Department for Education’s Holiday Activity & Food (HAF) programme, however, this only covers the Summer, Easter and Christmas holidays, so they have to secure funding from various partners to be able to offer the free places throughout the year.

Frank Carn-Pryor, Abbeycroft’s Sports and Outdoor Activity Officer said:

“We’re extremely grateful for this funding which allows us to offer an additional fifteen free places in Newmarket each school holiday.”
“We see how the children and young people we work with thrive in an outdoor environment when given the chance to try new, exciting activities such as archery and axe-throwing and they love helping the instructors to make their own lunch, including bread-making.”

Josh Schunmann, Director of Newmarket Charitable Foundation said:

The Newmarket Charitable Foundation is delighted to be able to support such an excellent initiative, providing children of all ages with experience in the great outdoors right on our doorstep, broadening their minds and learning new skills.”

A parent of a child who attended a previous Adventure Day said:

“These days have helped my daughter so much especially with building confidence, trying new things and making new friends. It got her out of the house and gave her an opportunity that I would not have been able to afford, especially during the current cost of living crisis.”

Abbeycroft has also secured funding for its free school holiday programmes across Suffolk from a variety of partners including West Suffolk Council, Babergh District Council, Activities Unlimited, Haverhill Town Council and Suffolk Community Foundation.

If you think your child may be eligible for one of the free places on any of Abbeycroft’s school holiday programmes, including Adventure Days, Family Park Cooking or Teen Challenge Days – please contact us at

axe throwing by young girl
boy trying to make fire by blowing on embers
boy and instructor doing archery
girls lighting fire on adventure day