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Kingswood Grosvenor Hall


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The following reviews have been added by visit leaders using the EVOLVE system.
61 reviews


Very Good




Children loved it. (November 2019 - Primary - Post No: 18021 )

(November 2019 - Primary - Post No: 17571 )

(November 2019 - Primary - Post No: 17501 )

(November 2019 - Primary - Post No: 17236 )

Prior to the visit- the centre staff were very accommodating in altering our requirements as necessary. As a school, we felt that our chosen ratio of having 3 adults (2 school staff and 1 centre staff) worked well when considering the distance of some of the activities away from from the main centre (and other groups). (October 2019 - Primary - Post No: 17150 )

(October 2019 - Primary - Post No: 16931 )

From: JRE Sent: 09 October 2019 08:11 To: Cc:; dwt; Donald Wykes Subject: Kingswood Grovesnor Hall Tour ref K1319J0136 Dear Rachel / Carolynne, I am writing to you to outline a series of issues I have surrounding our recent visit to Kingswood Grovesnor Hall on the weekend of the 5/6th October. Unfortunately this is now the second visit we have had to the centre this year that has led us to complain. Following our previous experience earlier this year I had a number of conversations with members of your Customer Service team, specifically Shelley Forsdyke and Millie Seago, during which I expressed my concerns over whether these issues would be addressed for this booking. I was repeatedly reassured that there would be no problems with any further bookings and that feedback had been acted upon. Unfortunately this did not prove to be the case. On arrival at the centre the group was greeted by the Course Leader Dominic who simply handed over a pack after telling us where to line up in the sports hall for activities, that we had to be strict with dinner times and for a fire drill to line up in the sports hall or if the fire was in the sports hall to line up on the netball court. Our group leader later discovered that he should have been discussing an evening activity led by him but this did not happen and she was only notified of this by the leader of the Obstacle Course activity while they were participating in this, an evening activity that was ultimately missed as the groups spent over fifty minutes queuing past their allocated time for their evening meal. The group were told where to put bags and given keys to classrooms but not provided with a map of the site or told where anything was and were in fact left to themselves to explore the site to find out where everything was situated as no-one offered to show us around. The group were also not advised of the check out procedures and had to work out themselves what to do with their bedding. Our group leader said alarm bells should have rung at the start when she was asked by another instructor who the group leader was and joked with that if it was Dom it would be like 'organising a piss up in a brewery'. The accommodation block we were allocated for this visit was the Cambridge block where the toilets were so dirty that on arrival our group leader had to request bleach to clean them with. The rooms were generally very shabby with handles not being secure and in one instance actually falling off. There was no heating in any of the rooms, meaning they were cold and damp, forcing teachers and students to sleep in coats, jumpers socks and woolly hats. One of the teacher rooms had bugs crawling over the desk while another had mushrooms growing in the bathroom. Two students' rooms had bugs actually in the beds. None of the students rooms had locks on the inside and corridors were entered by key code locks at either end. While I understand this may be acceptable for parties of younger students we clearly stated that we were bringing a party of 15 year olds and therefore this would be regarded as a safeguarding issue. The fire alarms in this building were also clearly not working as during the groups stay the fire alarm went off five times across the two days. During the night the fire alarm went off, a fact that our group only discovered the following morning as it had not sounded in their accommodation block and no member of staff had alerted them or checked on them during this time which is a significant health and safety issue. Twice the fire alarms disrupted meal times meaning that the group were unable to finish their meals before moving onto activities in order to keep to the schedule provided. When the fire alarm went off during dinner our group went to the assembly point and made sure everyone was present. No staff came to check on them and the instructors that were about eventually contacted the office to find out if they could go, no one bothered to enquire whether the group had finished their meals at this point. There were also further issues with timings around meals as serving times were allocated but not adhered to. Our group arrived for breakfast on the Sunday morning at their allocated time of 7.30 however spent over 40 minutes queuing. When they eventually reached the servers breakfast items had run out. There were also a number of problems with the other facilities on offer. In terms of the classroom facilities, these were also in a state of disrepair, like the bedrooms, with door handles which were falling off (at least three of the five rooms were affected) and locks that the keys did not unlock, on two occasions the groups had to seek assistance to get into the rooms as a result. While our group enjoyed the activities there were a number of significant health and safety issues that our teachers picked up on and has to speak to Kingswood staff to address. As requested prior to arrival the students had been split into five groups for activities, due to a reduced number of attendees the centre had reduced the groups to four but not informed our group leader. This meant that when it came to activities there were a group of students that were left without a leader or activity and rapidly had to be distributed ad hoc amongst the other groups. The instructor for the evening activity of Jacobs Ladder, Olivia, was very poor with little enthusiasm and no interaction or encouragement with / for the students, bearing in mind this was the end of the day and it was cold and dark by this point the pupils were bored very easily. While I accept that organisational errors can occur the health and safety issues were much greater. The abseiling tower only had floodlights on one side meaning there was just enough light to abseil safely but un-clipping safely took longer on the unlit side. During the Leap of Faith activity it as discovered at the top of the activity (so after ascent) that one of the students had been wrongly harnessed, luckily this was just before the student participated in the leap itself. In addition to this two groups were collapsed together for the Leap of Faith after another instructor decided to finish their activity early. This meant that some students did this activity three or four times while others in the group only did it once, maybe twice at most. Furthermore the two male instructors on the Leap of Faith were so busy playing music and chatting to our female students that they allowed students to wander around in the area with no helmets on while other students were completing the activity above them something our members of staff had to point out contravened health and safety regulations. Once again, I would like to express my grave concerns over the issues that have arisen from this visit especially as I was assured when the booking was made that the experience of our last visit would not be repeated. In fact, in many ways this visit was worse than the last visit. I look forward to hearing back from you as a matter of urgency to discuss these matters further. Kind regards, Jessica Reynolds Assistant Headteacher (October 2019 - Secondary - Post No: 16600 )

(October 2019 - Secondary - Post No: 16577 )

Some really great instructors but not are as enthusiastic and encouraging as they could be Food wasn't great (October 2019 - Primary - Post No: 16538 )

(September 2019 - Primary - Post No: 15846 )

Very tired venue. Needs TLC. Some staff very helpful, others were not. Activity programme was not good and was a struggle to modify. Pre visit organisation was poor with contacts difficult to get hold of unless answering a routine enquiry. Will not be visiting again. (July 2019 - Secondary - Post No: 15177 )

5 STARS ~ The instructors are always so brilliant with our children! 2 STARS ~ Issue this year the timetabling of canoeing and raft building and the response from management! Didn't think the food was quite as good as in the past! (June 2019 - Primary - Post No: 13711 )

Good selection of Activities, all children had a chance to overcome a challenge for themselves and meal times, all children were eating and had a good range of food to choose from. But no hot chocolate, rooms weren't ready on arrival and weren't able to get into the room until later in the day. (June 2019 - Primary - Post No: 13613 )

(June 2019 - Primary - Post No: 12772 )

Activities were amazing for the children, however the programme structure, accommodation and food needs improving. (June 2019 - Primary - Post No: 12672 )

(June 2019 - Primary - Post No: 12627 )

The quality of the accommodation was very disappointing - no running water for teachers. (June 2019 - Secondary - Post No: 12563 )

The children absolutely loved their time at Grosvenor Hall as they had nothing to compare it to. However, as staff, we were quite disappointed by Kingswood's poor communication and organisation this year. They also made a very significant change to the activity timetable which meant the children were paying more but participating in far fewer activities. This change was shared far too close to the trip We had to speak to several people from quite high up at Kingswood before they attempted to rectify some of this. (May 2019 - Primary - Post No: 12266 )

The focused activities such as the zip line, 3G swing and high ropes were all very good and children thoroughly enjoyed them. However, less focused activities called 'course director times' were very unstructured and were not well planned, meaning visit leaders had to step in instead. I think this needs to change for next time. Additionally the facilities need updating with some TLC as the toilets were not clean or well kept (pain peeling off the walls, dirty towels on the floor etc). Finally the food in the canteen was very bland with not many healthy options. The food hall was also very loud for our children due to the amount of people there, although our children coped especially well. Overall, I still think it is a good place to go for residential but I think a few points need to be passed onto the organisers. (May 2019 - Secondary - Post No: 12214 )

Disorganised and left thr young people waiting that led to them becoming bored and making it difficult to engage them. Issues started to arise as result. (May 2019 - Secondary - Post No: 12199 )

The staff were knowledgeable and approachable, responding to questions and requests. The activities were well organised and adapted to suit the groups of children and individual needs. Grosvenor Hall Staff formed positive relationships with the children and adults. There was a good range of activities to develop a range of skills. There were good systems in place to cope with large numbers of children at the centre. (May 2019 - Primary - Post No: 12172 )

Centre is well organised and staff worked very well with our pupils, all who have special needs. (May 2019 - Primary - Post No: 11980 )

The trip was mostly smooth. there had obviously been a shortage of staff but this had little impact on our stay. Staff were very helpful and the foodwas excellent. (May 2019 - Primary - Post No: 11744 )

(April 2019 - Primary - Post No: 11533 )

There were a number of issues during our stay, some of which stemmed from the late changes to our accommodation during our Easter Break. Some of the activities were not well organised and some were even missed. There were some issues with hygiene, for example the girls' toilets in the main building had no toilet paper despite school staff members informing Kingswood staff a number of times. We also did not receive our Kingswood visitor badges until 10 o clock on our second day, which is a safeguarding concern. (April 2019 - Primary - Post No: 11515 )

Great activities, great staff interactions with children. (April 2019 - Primary - Post No: 11247 )

The facilities have not been maintained as well as they could be. (April 2019 - Primary - Post No: 11084 )

(April 2019 - Primary - Post No: 10848 )

(March 2019 - Primary - Post No: 10353 )

(February 2019 - Primary - Post No: 9836 )

(February 2019 - Primary - Post No: 9724 )

(January 2019 - Primary - Post No: 9118 )

Very appropriate to the trip and well resourced. (January 2019 - Secondary - Post No: 8820 )

(November 2018 - Primary - Post No: 7533 )

The activities, accommodation and meals were well organised by staff at Grosvenor Hall. Activity staff worked well with the children to motivate them and keep them safe; learning key children's names and identifying children with additional needs. The accommodation was clean and secure and there was a good selection of foods at meal times. (November 2018 - Primary - Post No: 7437 )

(October 2018 - Secondary - Post No: 7096 )

(October 2018 - Primary - Post No: 6903 )

Really impressed with the challenge and support given to the school as a whole. (September 2018 - Secondary - Post No: 6486 )

Great fun day out enjoyed by all the children. One problem, not all children had time to complete one activity, but centre arranged for them to complete the activity during the lunch break. Food only average. (September 2018 - Primary - Post No: 6228 )

Enjoyable week- children really enjoyed it and pushed their skills limit and gained confidence from all they participated in (September 2018 - Primary - Post No: 6068 )

(August 2018 - Secondary - Post No: 5838 )

(July 2018 - Primary - Post No: 5025 )

Food wasn't good, accommodation was poor. (June 2018 - Secondary - Post No: 4845 )

(June 2018 - Primary - Post No: 4705 )

Accommodation and the quality of food really let the place down. (June 2018 - Primary - Post No: 4666 )

(June 2018 - Primary - Post No: 4663 )

(June 2018 - Primary - Post No: 4645 )

Really pleased with our trip. All of the staff were helpful and cheerful - making the children feel settled and secure as well as confident to have a go. (June 2018 - Primary - Post No: 4532 )

Our annual residential was excellent- good to see updates continuously being made onsite with regards to accommodation and activities. There was an issue with accommodation where our assigned accommodation was allocated to another school which meant quite a long wait trying to sort out new rooms- although it was eventually resolved. (June 2018 - Primary - Post No: 4452 )

Our experience was not as positive as previous years. Feedback was given to Kingswood to address for next year. (June 2018 - Primary - Post No: 4373 )

Our experience this year was not as positive as previous years. (June 2018 - Primary - Post No: 4372 )

We will not be using Kingswood again due to many issues beyond our control which they say were caused by computer error. This included accommodation - we were forced to sleep in an adventure lodge for the first night (which was a large tent) rather than our rooms, this was not appropriate because the teacher tent was too far away and the boys had to share toilets and showers with other schools. We also lost out on activities because their computer had adjusted our itinerary to be 5 days (Tuesday til Saturday) whereas we had booked til Friday only. There were very few toilets on site and no specific adult only toilets (except in the teacher bedrooms); there were no drinking fountains on site and only one water station for filling up bottles. The food was poor. (June 2018 - Primary - Post No: 4349 )

(June 2018 - Secondary - Post No: 4113 )

The site was not felt to be clean and it did not meet our needs with poor management and disorganisation. Examples include broken beds and broken class on mattresses found on arrival. As well as not being able to access toilets within our own secure area until after dark. Activities were fine but felt rushed and did not meet the children's needs as well as we would have hoped. Very low staff moral amongst the site staff was evident. We will not be returning! (June 2018 - Primary - Post No: 4022 )

(June 2018 - Primary - Post No: 3894 )

Excellent venue, well organised and trained staff, who adapt activities to suit our students needs. (May 2018 - Secondary - Post No: 3273 )

(May 2018 - Secondary - Post No: 3005 )

Team building activities were effective (April 2018 - Secondary - Post No: 2842 )

(April 2018 - Primary - Post No: 2555 )

Poor food, poor organisation and staffing. Terrible food. will not be using again (February 2018 - Secondary - Post No: 1410 )

Although there was a bit of waiting around on the first day. (January 2018 - Secondary - Post No: 870 )


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