A sunny October adventure on Ilkley Arts leaf trail

After a wet and blustery start to the weekend I was relieved to wake up to brighter skies this morning. My plan was to visit Nell Bank near Ilkley, for a leaf trail that was part of the Ilkley Arts trail. Every October artists from around the area get an opportunity to showcase their works.

The family friendly trail had leaf themed works of art hidden around the site, for families to hunt and find. Armed with our map and description sheet, me and my eldest set off to see what we could find.

The grounds of the education centre are lovely, with woods, open spaces, adventure playground and water play area. The art could be found in all sorts of places, hung from trees, hidden on the sides of buildings and even in the pond.

I wasn’t sure how my eldest, aged 9, would enjoy the trail, but he was enthusiastic looking for the next leaf on the map. There were even a few ‘wow’s’ from him when we found the art!

Once we had found most of the leaves it was then a tossup between visiting the adventure playground first or the café. My Son had seen you could buy pie and peas and so this was the request for lunch. He doesn’t miss a trick! After lunch, he worked it off by running around the adventure playground, having a great time discovering some tunnels and doing his best to lose me. I didn’t mind, the sunshine was lovely and warm, I found a nice bench to sit on and watched the many ladybirds we’d seen make a landing. A lovely sunny October day that yesterday with all the wind and rain I hadn’t thought possible.

What did you do this weekend to get outside? Are there art trails where you live?

I received no incentive to write this and all views are my own. We paid £2 each to take part in the trail, under 5’s were free. Look out for Ilkley arts trail next year.

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2 comments Add yours
  1. This sounds such fun, and a great way to introduce children to art. My two (now completely grown up) really enjoyed the similar trails round National Trusts houses – seeking out hidden bits of decoration or something odd in a painting; things that a casual adult visitor might miss!

    1. It was great fun and my Son by the end was giving a little critique on the pieces we found. I’ll have to look out for any National Trust ones, I’m sure my two would hunting around their houses.
      Thanks for reading!

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