Thank you so much to the fabulous Samantha Evans, Corsham resident extraordinaire, for filling us in on this hidden gem’s family-friendly spots….
What’s the best way to get here?
There is (sadly) no train station; however the bus journey between here and Bath is very regular and picturesque. It leaves Bath every 20 minutes (Monday to Friday) and takes around 45 minutes.
What do your kids loving doing here the most?
I have to start with the fantastic Camomile Café. A truly child-centred café on the beautiful high street. To be honest it’s become a home from home for me and my little ones and a bit of a lifesaver since we moved to Corsham. The owners Frances and Anna have worked hard to create a place where parents, grandparents and children of all ages feel welcome. They offer all sorts of classes and courses; ranging from hypnobirthing to first aid; baby massage to pre-school yoga and science and cooking clubs for the older ones. The staff who work in the café are trained to run many of the courses as well as cooking up food that even the fussiest toddler will eat! The café itself is set up with many toys and games; a ball pit that my baby boy squeals at everytime he sees and a shop area selling toys and beautiful clothes. It is worth a special visit to Corsham just by itself!
Springfield Community Campus is a purpose built hub near the centre of town incorporating a leisure centre, library and a range of spaces rented out by community groups. I am here at least 2 or 3 times in the week with my little monkeys trying to tire them out with swimming, softplay or a run around their wonderful playground.
We are lucky to have two beautiful National Trust places nearby; the famous Lacock Abbey and Village (10 minute drive) and The Courts Garden in Holt (15 minute drive). The Courts Garden is a very recent discovery of ours and we had the most glorious autumn afternoon wandering the lawns, pond and orchard. They even have a forest school area where you can build dens and climb trees.
The Pound Arts Centre is (luckily for us) a stones throw from our house and offers an auditorium, café-bar (which does a brownie to die for!), exhibition space and baby friendly facilities. They often put on family friendly shows and offer all sorts of child friendly workshops and activities all year round.
It’s feeding time, where will everybody be happy?
Mother and Wild on the high street is fabulous. I often find myself there post nursery drop off if my little boy is napping. They do a great coffee and have a gorgeous little courtyard garden to sit in. Inside is warm and inviting and the staff are very accommodating when you go in with little ones. The menu is all mouth watering but I highly recommend the pizzas-they are the best I have EVER had!
If you are able to go a little further afield then Neston Farm Shop and Café is well worth a visit. They have lovely food (my little boy particularly enjoyed their macaroni cheese) and selection of toys to play with and a play area perfect for little ones to run off steam.
There’s a tantrum brewing, help!
I would definitely head to the park at Springfield; swings, slides, climbing frames and a trampoline should distract your little ones out of a tantrum. Though I have to say a hot chocolate and a ginger bread man at Camomile Café is often the way to my little girls heart.
Is it worth it in the rain?
Camomile Café (again!) always has plenty to keep you and the kids occupied on a rainy day and the children’s area in the Library is bright and spacious and great if you have a baby and toddler like me; my little boy can crawl about safely whilst I read with my 3 year old.
You can’t come here and not visit…
The stunning Corsham Court. The house and gardens are open afternoons in the summer and weekends in the winter (but closed in December.) We haven’t been into the house as I am not sure my kids are at the stage where a stately home full of beautiful art wouldn’t make them go a bit crazy; but the gardens are beautiful and well worth a wander around. And next to it is Corsham Park; a little more wild (you would need to swap your buggy for a carrier) but a very popular place for dog (and child) walking with a huge lake.
Before you set off, you should know……
That Corsham Court is home to a family of peacocks who you can often see wandering and hooting around the town centre. They have even been incorporated into the town signs. You do have to watch out for them when driving around though -t hey don’t really pay attention to cars!
The town, and in particular the 17th century high street has been used as the backdrop for lots of film and TV dramas. It was most recently featured in BBC 1’s Poldark starring Aidan Turner.