School visits start again at Washington Wetland Centre

Washington Wetland Centre has opened its doors to school parties for the first time since March.

Monday, 26th October 2020, 3:24 pm

Coronavirus meant the nature reserve in Pattinson was forced to stop all visits for almost three months, until it reopened to the public on June 10.

Now the centre, managed by the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust (WWT), is welcoming back school visits too, with learning sessions linked to the curriculum to make the most of the open-air environment.

The hands-on sessions are suitable for a range of ages and abilities. They are run by experienced staff, teaching through exploration and discovery. The reserve is open 364 days a year.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Washington Wetland Centre is open again for school visits.

Staff have spent the last few months putting in place all necessary steps to keep school groups and other visitors safe. They are taking bookings now.

WWT Washington has also been accredited with the “We’re Good to Go” stamp of approval; a nationwide Covid-19 safety standard which ensures they are operating within the government and public health guidance.

As the current situation remains uncertain, WWT are also guaranteeing that schools can re-book or cancel free of charge should they be unable to visit due to the pandemic.

The centre is getting back on its feet. In August the Echo reported that it had been forced to get by with just six members of staff during furlough. It usually consists of 30 staff and 70 volunteers.

Otters are among the attractions at Washington Wetland Centre.

But they were delighted with the support and feedback they received when the public was re-admitted. Now school parties are returning too.

Learning manager, Joanne Newbury, said: “We’re very excited to be welcoming schools back to our wetlands. We’ve really missed interacting with the children, introducing them to nature and often showing them things they have never seen before.

“Being able to create a love for wildlife and teach children about the importance of wetlands and why they need protecting, is so important.

“The last few months have been a challenging time for teachers and we’ve been working hard to ensure that they and their pupils can still have a fantastic time whilst remaining safe here.

“It will be great to once again see children’s faces light up as they discover the wonder of wetlands and their wildlife.”

Read More

Read More
Read more: October half term dates and term dates for 2020/2021

A message from the Editor:

With the coronavirus having a major impact on many of our advertisers – and consequently the revenue we receive – we are more reliant than ever on you taking out a digital subscription.

Subscribe to the Sunderland Echo website and enjoy unlimited access to local news and information online and on our app. With a digital subscription, you can read more than 5 articles, see fewer ads, enjoy faster load times, and get access to exclusive newsletters and content.

Visit here to sign up. You can subscribe to the newspaper with 20% off here. Thank you.