Mar 08

Keeping cyberbullying in the spotlight

UnknownWilliam Ellis of OnlineThem comments on the new proposed guidelines from the Crown Prosecution Service which say adults who use fake online profiles to harass others should be prosecuted.

“Cyberbullying may be a new phenomenon but it is serious and can cause great anxiety, upset and stress. Hiding behind the veil of the internet should not be a reason to avoid prosecution from abusing others – in the same way that using the internet should not allow you to become a victim. Abuse is abuse and whether done in person or online, it should not be tolerated by anyone, the law included.

“Going online has become an integrated part of children’s lives and creates an incredible opportunity to learn and to connect with others. However, the risks which the online world presents cannot be ignored which is why we welcome the proposed guidance which would see ‘trolls’ prosecuted. The sad truth is that everyone who goes online is at risk from cyberbullying. The statistics about the scale of cyberbullying are scarce but those that are out there suggest that it is increasing.

“More can be done to protect children from these risks which includes using the law to crackdown on cyberbullying activity and act as a strong deterrent for perpetrators. Keeping cyberbullying in the spotlight creates more opportunities for parents to engage with their children about the issue. A recent study* found that a third of children felt they should be learning about online safety at home and, as a father myself, I know that parents also want to protect children online. Ignoring the issue or trying to prevent children from going online will only exasperate the issue. As parents, we need to be able to foster trust and transparency. It can sometimes be hard to have open two-way conversations about issues with children but this is what we need to do and anything that can facilitate this is a step in the right direction.”

One in five young people are targeted by a cyberbully every day, a fact which is unbeknown to their parents.

With 65% of bullying incidents now occurring online, it is easier than ever for bullies to take advantage of social media platforms and hide their activities from teachers, parents and supervising adults. Technology is providing platforms for cyberbullying, and new ways for trolls and catfish to make contact with your children. OnlineThem enables you to monitor your child’s activity across popular social media platforms, all with your child’s permission and without the need to access their passwords. We at OnlineThem believe that, to fight cyberbullying, ways of monitoring your child’s activities need to advance alongside technology and social media. We have developed OnlineThem in order to provide a way to ensure that cyberbullying will no longer go unnoticed or undetected without you needing to look over your children’s shoulders or fear that they are hiding it from you.

Check out the website here  - monitor your child’s activities online

OnlineThem is a first of its kind cyberbullying monitoring tool in the UK, designed by parents, for parents. The intelligence tool uses big data to give parents visibility over their child’s online activity enabling them to be alerted to risks of cyberbullying as well as other potentially dangerous online behaviours.

Feb 08

Play your part in creating a better and safer internet for our kids

safer internet day Safer Internet Day 2016 will take place on the 9th February with the theme Play your part for a better internet!

On the whole the internet is a really positive place, but there are still too many young people who have negative experiences like being targeted with mean comments. This Safer Internet Day young people should come together to explore how we can change things.

This may mean different things to different people but as parents we all want our children to enjoy all the benefits of the internet and none of the risks. How do we go about educating our children to understand the benefits and to avoid the dangers.

Perhaps you could talk to your child about what actions they could take to make the internet a kinder place?

Here are some Childalert agreement rules but first why not just get involved – support your kids when young in their exploring of then internet – share fun things with them – don’t just leave them alone to play on your tablet and find out for themselves!

Parents and carers play a crucial role in supporting children to navigate the risks while also making the most of the opportunities offered by technology. The most important thing you can do is to have a conversation and stay engaged with your children’s digital lives.

Why not have a go at this QUIZ

And check out these videos about kindness and respect online


Nov 23

Antibiotics Resistance – the greatest health problem of our century

antibiotic awareness

Oct 29

Saving for your children’s future

UnknownHow to save for your child’s future

Here are some tips by Julie Hutchison and few of our own like using KidStart to save for your children’s future.

While we can’t guarantee that our children will become millionaires, there are some simple steps that parents can take to really help set up their children for a good financial future.  Commenting on the benefits of thinking ahead, Consumer Finance Expert at Standard Life, Julie Hutchison said: “Being savvy to the savings options available to children can reap rewards as they get older.  From Junior ISAs to setting up a trust, it’s important to know the options available.  And as well as setting them up financially, it could also encourage loved ones to become successful savers themselves as they get older.”

How to help you save for your child’s future

1.       Review your Child Trust Fund

If your child was born between 1 September 2002 and 2 January 2011, they’re likely to have a Child Trust Fund already set-up in their name. Parents can add to this by up to £4,080 a year this tax year – either into a cash savings or investments – and it’s tax-efficient too.  Your child will gain access to their account when they turn 18, the perfect time to help fund university or buying their first car.

Child Trust Funds are, however, gradually becoming historic, as they have been overtaken by Junior ISAs.  Parents can transfer a Child Trust Fund into a Junior ISA which does mean more options and choice available so it’s worth considering whether a move is right for you.

2.       Set up a Junior ISA

If your child doesn’t qualify for a Child Trust Fund and they are still under 18, or they have one but you want to transfer, then you could consider setting up a Junior ISA.  Just like your own ISA, a junior version is tax efficient and, as with the Child Trust Fund, you can save up to £4,080 for them this year. Your child will have full access to the account aged 18.

For more information on Standard Life’s Junior ISA visit:

3.       Consider a children’s bank account

A children’s bank or building society account is simple, but it comes with some health warnings.

Interest isn’t automatically paid tax-free yet, so you need to sign form R85 to make sure interest earned is tax free. The other banana skin here is where a parent is paying into the account and there’s more than £100 of interest in a tax year. In this situation, tax rules say this income has to be taxed back on the parent.  It does mean that bank and building society accounts can be most useful for small amounts of money, or where money comes from a variety of sources.

4.       Use your ISA allowance

If you want to stay in control of the money after your child turns 18, you might decide to save into your own ISA so it doesn’t automatically transfer over to them. You can save up to £15,240 into an ISA in the 2015-16 tax year, and it’s up to you how much of that is in stocks and shares or cash, or a bit of both.  And unlike a Child Trust Fund and Junior ISA, you can take withdrawals from your ISA when you want to.

5.       Start a pension for your child

If you’re not happy with the idea of your child getting their hands on what could be a sizeable sum of money at age 18, how about saving into a pension for them, where they can’t access the funds until they are into their 50s? Starting a pension for a child suits those who are prepared to take a very long term approach so their loved ones could benefit from many years of the compounding of any potential investment growth.

The annual limit which applies for this type of pension saving is £3,600 and works in a special way. If you pay in £2,880, it is topped-up with tax relief by the government, and becomes £3,600. But your child won’t have access to it until their late 50s or 60s – again, this won’t suit everyone.

6.       Set up a trust

This one’s more relevant for grandparents. Sometimes, it’s helpful to set aside a pot of money now, but in a way which allows you to control who gets what, and when – for instance if you don’t want your grandchildren to access their money until a certain age. This is sometimes called a ‘trust’. The money is controlled by trustees who manage the investments. There are different types of trust, which give access at different times and ages. The tax issues are complex, and I’d recommend you take legal advice to stay on track here, particularly when it comes to inheritance tax.

7. A more immediate way to get started

Why not join – it is free and will allow you to shop online and in some high street shops and receive money back on every £1 spent – so whether you are doing your weekly grocery shop or buying for Christmas gifts or just regular clothes or utilities or anything you might buy online – do it through KidStart and you receive up  to 20% back every time as savings for your children This money gets transferred into any UK bank or building society you tell them.

In summary

It’s not hard to take the first steps towards saving for a child’s future. You just need to decide whether the idea of “too much too soon” gives you sleepless nights, or how ready your teenager might be for financial responsibility at age 18. Will you hand over control and use a Junior ISA? Or do you prefer to delay access or keep control with one of the other options? It’s up to you.

This is not financial advice. Standard Life is not responsible for the content on any external websites. An ISA, Junior ISA, Child Trust Fund or pension which holds stocks and shares is an investment – its value can go up or down and it may be worth less than you paid in. This information was originally written in June 2015 with figures for tax year 2015/16 – tax and legislation can change in the future and the tax position will depend on individual circumstances.

Oct 14

Today is World Maths Day – what does it mean?

maths is funWorld Maths Day celebrates the importance of maths in our everyday lives.

But how can parents help their children to enjoy maths?

Carey Ann Dodah, Head of Curriculum at Explore Learning says: “If I got a penny for the amount of times I have heard people say, ‘Oh I’m awful at maths’ or ‘I’m not a maths person’ with a shrug and a smile, I would be a very rich person!  It’s so common place amongst adults in the UK but you would never hear someone in public admit, ‘I can’t read’ – and if you did you certainly wouldn’t do it with a smile!  It’s time for change!

But how do you inspire children to love maths?  Maths, whether we love it or hate it, is a fundamental part of everyday life. It’s a global language. It underpins many essential life skills and yet can also be the key to many of life’s biggest questions.  For something so indispensable we should definitely seek to master it, but more importantly have fun with it – from an early age.

Rule number one is to drop any negativity on the subject – remember that your child is hugely influenced by you so if you are proudly claiming how bad you are at the subject they will too!  Second have fun with it!

Here are some ideas how:

•    Play games – children respond particularly well to games such as Monopoly. They are learning how to calculate their earnings as well as using logical thinking.  They are also a good way to spend some quality time together.

Yahtzee is great for developing calculations and strategy without children realising it.

Playing cards is also beneficial – lots of maths can be learnt through games such as cribbage. There are also dedicated maths card games such as HOO HA! or Ulti, great card games that help you master your tables.

•    Mix shopping with learning – When you’re on your weekly shop, get the children involved by asking them to recite the prices and add up what’s in the trolley.  Playing the ‘guess how much the shopping comes to’ game is a great way of developing estimation skills and is great fun

•    Bake and learn – All cooking requires some element of maths. Baking cakes and cookies can easily become an educational game.  Test their maths skills by asking them to add up or adapt a recipe for different amounts of serving.  The great thing about this is that they get to eat the results at the end!

•    Enter competitions – There are a number of individual maths competitions out there that you can compete in – particularly on World Maths Day.  Each year Explore Learning, together with the highly prestigious NRICH Project at the University of Cambridge, organises the National Young Mathematicians’ Awards which is the only school team maths competition in the UK.  Schools enter a team of four year 5 or 6 pupils where they compete against other schools in their areas with the main aim of instilling confidence in children and helping them see the fun that maths can bring!

•    Don’t pass on your insecurities – If you’re a parent who claims to be bad at maths, try not to.  By saying how much you dislike maths, you are passing this negativity to your child who will see it as acceptable.  Encourage them by making it fun and when they succeed celebrate it!  If you’re worried about your own maths skills, you can always visit the National Numeracy Challenge website that helps you identify your weaknesses and suggests activities and tutorials that you can do to boost those areas.

•    Games and Apps – We’re lucky to live in a generation where our children are spoilt for choice with the amount of games and apps on offer to keep them entertained.  There are so many apps out there and at Explore learning we have a free Times Table app to help children while they’re on the move (

Sep 28

FREE Brita water bottles and stickers to give away

BRITA Fill&Go Kids Stickers copyWe all know how important it is for adults to drink at least 2 litres of water a day, but what about children? Recent research has revealed that two thirds of parents do not know how much fluid their children should be drinking each day.
When they’re at home, most parents will make sure that they provide lots of refreshing H20 to keep their little ones hydrated, but what happens when they head off to school? Parents have no way of monitoring their drinking habits, which means that most children come home thirsty, tired and irritable!
Nutritionist Jo Travers warns that being dehydrated at school could affect a child’s performance, ‘Children are less likely to recognise the early stages of thirst meaning that they may forget to drink water regularly.  Dehydration negatively affects their cognitive function, visual attention and motor skills.”
According to European Food Standards Agency kids should be drinking between 1 and 1.5 litres per day and water filtration experts BRITA have some fun tips to help kids see drinking water as a fun experience.
  • Challenge them – set them a goal to have drunk a certain amount whilst at school and reward them with a treat once they get home (we find chocolate works well!)
  • Bottle it – they are more likely to remember to drink if they have a full bottle of water next to them, rather than having to remember to
  • Stick it on – BRITA has created limited edition stickers which show them how much to drink during the day. The fun design means they’ll be the envy of their friends!

SO YOUR CHALLENGE – tell your friends and school about this post by sharing it on Facebook, tweeting about it, spreading the word. Email us at to tell us you’re on the case and give us your home address. We will send the first five people a Fill and Go Brita water bottle and a sticker pack.

If you are one of the lucky winners to receive one of FIVE  Fill&Go bottles and sticker pack send in your photos and we’ll all be helping all other mums and dads recognise the need to keep kids hydrated!

Jun 09

Should a dog be a danger to children?

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A dog in the family can be a wonderful things for any child – it teaches them love, respect, how to care and be responsible for another and it can give them a place to find peace and quiet.

But there have to be some rules and be friendly to your own dog is not always a ticket to approach every other dog you see .. here are some statistics and tips on how to teach your children to be careful around animals and in particular dogs and also tips on how to train and look after your dog at home.

Around half of all recorded dog attacks involve children under 12 years of age. And approximately 80 percent of dog bites that are treated at hospitals involve children under 15 years old.

These numbers increase dramatically for children between 5 and 9 years old, and boys are more likely than girls to be bitten. Dogs and unsupervised children are never a good mix, no matter how well behaved your dog normally is.

Advice for Parents

The chances of a dog biting your child can be reduced by following some simple advice.

Education is the key to preventing a dog bite. Children who are taught how to act around and safely play with dogs are much less likely to be bitten.

Supervision is also paramount. Children should always be supervised when they’re around dogs. Almost all fatal dog attacks occur when a child is left unsupervised.

Dog Safety Rules for Kids

Here’s a list of rules to review with your children to ensure they enjoy a safe and happy relationship with dogs:

Always treat your dog with kindness.

Never hit, kick, slap or bite a dog, or pull on its ears, tail or paws.

Leave the dog alone if it is doing something else.

Never bother a dog that has puppies, a dog that is playing with or guarding toys, or a dog that is eating or sleeping.

Do not approach a dog that you don’t know without asking the owner first.

Never approach a dog that is tied up, behind a fence, or in a car.

If you find a dog that is lost, call the police or animal control.

If you want to pet a dog, ask the owner for permission. If the owner says it’s OK, hold out your hand in a fist for the dog to sniff. If he shows interest, you can scratch him under the chin and say hello. Don’t pet the top of his head.

Stay calm. It will help the dog stay calm too

Always talk in a quiet voice or whisper. Don’t shout. Take a “time out” if you feel angry or frustrated, as the dog will pick up on your negative attitude.

If you are suddenly in a vulnerable position with an aggressive dog, keep as still as possible.

If a loose dog approaches you, stand still like a tree. Keep your hands at your sides and stay quiet and calm. Look away from the dog rather than directly at it.

If you are on the ground, curl up into a ball. Stay quiet and calm. Look down at your knees, not at the dog.

Move slowly, set things down carefully, and don’t run when you’re around dogs, as this gets them excited; they may give chase and accidentally hurt you.

Safety Advice for Dog Owners

Consider spaying or neutering your dog

Neutering helps reduce aggression, especially in males. Un-neutered dogs are more than twice as likely to bite than neutered dogs. Female dogs that are in heat or nursing their puppies are more dangerous than spayed females, and their behavior can be unpredictable.

Talk to your vet or local humane organization or animal shelter for information on low-cost spay/neuter assistance.

Always supervise your dog

Dogs that are left on their own may feel uncertain and defensive, or they might become overly confident.

Train and socialise your dog

Ensure that your dog interacts well with people and other dogs. Teach it good manners in the home and in public. Basic training is as important for the owner as it is for the dog, and socialisation is the key to a well-adjusted adult dog.

It’s essential that puppies between 8 and 16 weeks old are exposed to a variety of people, places, dogs, and other animals. As dogs age, continue to expose them to these things to ensure they are well socialized throughout their lives.

Restraining your dog may be necessary

Twenty-four percent of fatal dog attacks involve loose dogs that are off their owner’s property. Dogs that are allowed to roam beyond the yard may see your entire neighborhood as their “territory” and defend it aggressively.

By obeying local leash laws and properly containing your dog within the boundaries of your property, you will not only be respecting the laws in your community, but will also be keeping your dog safe from cars, other dogs and unforeseen dangers.

Don’t chain your dog

Despite the fact that you need to restrain your dog and make sure that it knows its boundaries, it is not a good idea to keep it chained up.

Chained dogs are nearly three times more likely to bite, as tethering or chaining dogs increases their stress levels, protectiveness and vulnerability, thereby increasing the potential for aggression. Fencing is a much better solution.



May 12

TOP TIPS – Teaching Your Child to Ride a Bike

188329_firstbike0045Want to get your child started on a bike this summer? Here are some top tips from balance bike company FirstBIKE.

1. Always start with a balance bike. Balance bikes have no pedals or stabilisers and are much lighter than pedal bikes. On balance bikes children use their feet to balance and propel themselves along. One of the biggest advantages of this method is that children as young as 2 learn to balance on their own without explanation, coaching or unnecessary stress.

2. Start on the flat and work your way up. The ideal place to ride a balance bike is a park or area with no traffic. Begin on flat terrain and gradually upgrade to small hills.

3. Teach them to use a brake. Around the age of 2½ to 3 years, children are able to operate a hand brake provided it is gentle enough for their little fingers. Show your child how it works and motivate him/her to practice braking. A good tip is to draw a line on the pavement and challenge the child to stop on it.

4. Always wear a helmet. Wearing a helmet on a balance bike – as on any other bike – is another must. The sooner your child gets used to it, the better. Shop for a helmet together, and let the little biker express his or her opinion. Make it a treat!

5. Look for safety features like a ‘steering limiter’. Bikes with handlebars that limit the steering angle, a “steering limiter,” help little ones keep direction and prevent rough falls. Models with sharp edges or extruding screws should also be avoided.

6. Choose a bike with an adjustable seat. On balance bikes, children immediately benefit from the security of having their feet on the ground, so it is important that the seat is easily adjustable to their height. When the child sits on the bike, both feet should be firmly planted on the ground – not just the toes – with knees slightly bent. This way, the child is able to properly push off, slow down and stabilise.

7. Get the right safety gear. Wearing bright colours or a safety vest is recommended, ideally with reflective elements so he or she is readily visible. As for shoes, balance bikes are called “run bikes” in many languages, which means that flip-flops will not do – toes should be covered and ankles fixed.

8. Transfer to a pedal bike when the time is right. Around the age of 4 or 5 depending on their height and skill – children can smoothly transfer to a pedal bike without ever needing stabilisers. From a balance bike, such as FirstBIKE, children learn how to balance and use a hand brake. The only skill they still need to learn is pedalling, however, at the age of 4 or 5, it is a natural transition.

May 07

The Silent Killer

Carbon Monoxide and Child Safety


Despite what the recent weather and unseasonal temperatures might have you believe, summer is actually just around the corner and the holiday season will be in full and fanciful swing for families up and down the country before you can say – “please let the holidays be over soon”.

But wherever you are going to unwind and relax (and good luck with that if you have kids) it’s imperative that you keep yourself and your children safe from ‘The Silent Killer’ – Carbon Monoxide (CO) poisoning.

CO poisoning will take the lives of up to 50 people in the UK this year and hundreds more lives will be lost across the globe because of it; you won’t see it, smell it, taste it or touch it, but unless you take the time to understand it, it could very well be you that is counting the cost.

CO poisoning is the biggest cause of accidental deaths in the UK every year, yet unlike campaigns about fire safety and seasonal safety adverts about diving into rivers or setting off fireworks, CO poisoning coverage is pretty limited.

But a few simple tips on what to look out for should see you safe and sound, not just throughout your jollies, but in everyday life too. So what is it and how can you keep your family safe from it?

Carbon Monoxide is produced from the incomplete burning of carbon based fuels – gas, coal, oil and wood. The majority of cases in the home stem from badly installed or damaged appliances that have prevented fuel from burning properly or, if you have a chimney and a cosy open fire, blockages like birds’ nests stopping exhaust fumes from escaping will lead to the same outcome.

The best way to ensure that these problems are avoided is to have your boiler checked every 12 months and invest in a carbon monoxide alarm that is battery powered – that way it still works if you have a blackout.

There are also a number of things that you and your children can look for around the home that could warn you of a potential carbon monoxide leak -

  • Increased condensation on windows and even walls
  • Yellow or brown discolouration around your boiler
  • Flames that look yellow instead of blue

All of these things are physical signs that you may have a problem with carbon monoxide.

Also, if you have pets, your dog might seem a little lethargic and your cat will probably refuse to come into the house, so be sure to teach the kids to keep a keen eye on the animals.

But the safety doesn’t just stop in your home, carbon monoxide can be found in all sorts of places and can affect you when you least expect it.

If you’re going camping this year, don’t bring any heaters inside the tent. Even small gas heaters can give off enough CO to have a fatal effect, so be sure to pack a few extra jumpers and make sure you have a thick, cosy sleeping bag instead.

And then there’s the barbeques.

The story of Hannah Thomas-Jones is a case in point.

When out camping, Hannah and her family took the decision to move their disposable barbeque inside their tent to keep warm; a really bad idea that unwittingly led to Hannah’s death.

Even cold barbeques give off carbon monoxide, and Hannah – who was only 14 when the tragedy struck – died from the fumes that her family had no idea about.

CO awareness should be at the forefront of every family’s safety routine. Don’t get caught out by the biggest accidental killer in the UK!

Visit for more information on CO poisoning and help on how to keep you and your family safe.

Apr 30

Britain’s Biggest Family Event Sunday 28th June

Pop Stars and the Biggest Names in Children’s Entertainment Unite for:

“Britain’s Biggest Family Event”

Sunday 28th June  visit


offer ends May 5th 2015

Union J

Justin Fletcher – CBeebies Superstar


Dick & Dom

Sam & Mark

Also featuring:

SpongeBob SquarePants, Bart & Homer Simpson, Horrible Histories, Brainiac Live!, Chickenshed Theatre, Cook & Line – CBeebies Swashbuckling Pirates, The Cuban Brothers, Shaun The Sheep and much more

The Teen Zone – Meet your favourite YouTuber!

Urban Arena – BMX, mountain biking & Parkour


*Early Bird tickets on sale 9am Wednesday 29 April*

Tickets from £12.50 until 5th May


Barclaycard presents British Summer Time Hyde Park is proud to announce a phenomenal line up to please the whole family. The final day of Barclaycard presents British Summer Time Hyde Park this year will be filled with musical acts, comedy and good old fashioned family entertainment, plus award winning street food.

Headed up by boyband favourites Union J and including everyone from Britain‘s Got Talent winners Collabro to king of kids TV Justin Fletcher and more CBeebies stars, right up to teen YouTube sensations – no other day out packs more into one park.

A big hit with every member of the family, suitable for all ages, Family Day has proved an annual hit in the capital since the start of Barclaycard presents British Summer Time Hyde Park in 2013. For the equivalent price of a family cinema ticket, Britain’s Biggest Family Event in Hyde Park is fine value for money. The little ones will never want to leave and even the bigger kids will not be able to wipe the smiles off their faces, or the selfies from their phones after grabbing a chat with all their YouTube faves.

Union J won the Best British Breakthrough at the 2013 BBC Radio 1 Teen Awards.  Since their debut on the ‘X Factor’, Josh, JJ, Jaymi and George have become undeniable teen heartthrobs. Their debut self-titled album Union J was a Top Ten smash hit and their 2014 hit single, ‘Tonight (We Live Forever)’ was a Top Ten single.  They are currently supporting The Vamps on their huge UK tour.

A fantastic addition to the incredible lineup for the day will be Collabro, 2014’s Britain’s Got Talent champions. Since winning the show, the five piece musical theatre group have performed at the Royal Variety Show, had a No.1 debut album Stars and sold out a 32 date UK tour.

The star of the show for younger children is BAFTA Award Winning CBeebies superstar Justin Fletcher MBE of “Mr Tumble” fame. Justin will be commanding the Great Oak Stage for a high-energy song and dance show to delight his loyal audience. Fresh from his sell out UK tour this master of slapstick, he may even give dads some tips on improving their own comedy routines.

Joining Justin on the Great Oak Stage are Dick & Dom competing against each other in a series of hilarious challenges, complete with their usual anarchic antics. The unique comedy chemistry makes this duo one of the most loved children’s acts in the country.

Dick & Dom said: ”We’re really looking forward to being your twisted ringmasters of the main stage for this massive family event. We’ll be bringing you the biggest names and best acts. It’s going to be THE best day out for the kids…….and you!!”

BAFTA Award-winning children’s presenters Sam & Mark will be bringing their hugely anticipated ‘On the Road Show’ to the Barclaycard presents British Summer Time Hyde Park, jammed packed with laughs, jokes, sketches, prizes and bundles of family interaction and games!

Sam & Mark said, “We’re so excited to be bringing our ‘On The Road Show’ to Hyde Park. It’s a show that we hope will entertain the whole family; from kids, older brothers and sisters, Mums, Dads, Grandmas and Granddads! It will be jam packed with lots of fun, games and laughs. It’s going to be awesome!”

A favourite from last two years, Barclaycard presents British Summer Time Hyde Park are pleased to say that Horrible Histories will be regaling the audience with their original live sketches. Sticking with the educational yet entertaining, it is time to strap on the safety goggles as the award winning Science TV Series Brainiac Live! will also be on the Barclaycard Stage for a breathless ride through the wild world of the weird and wonderful.

Renowned theatre company Chickenshed will be returning to Barclaycard presents British Summer Time Hyde Park with performances of its acclaimed and highly popular children’s show Tales from the Shed. This is the second year that Chickenshed have been a part of the experience and their performances are an integral part of the family day.

But the fun does not end there, with some of the world’s best-loved characters joining the summer fun. Bart & Homer Simpson, Spongebob Squarepants, Titan the Robot will all be at Hyde Park to spend time with their fans and provide photo opportunities. Penguin Random House will be bringing along some family favourites – Spot the Dog and Baby Bookworms for storytelling sessions, games, dancing and singing. This will be a unique opportunity for the little ones to see the characters jump off the page and for the youngest of babies to enjoy exploring texture, shape and sound in the interactive workshops based around Ladybird’s ‘Baby Touch’ books. Peppa Pig and George will also be having their very own reading sessions too – perfect for parents, babies and toddlers to enjoy together.

Families will also be able to join Shaun The Sheep for fun and games that will have them bouncing, singing and frolicking around the farmyard with Shaun and his friends.  There will be baa-rrilliant themed activities such as Shaun’s Sheep Hopper Maze, Sheep Shape Clay Modelling, Dodge Cabbage Team Game and Get Fit With The Flock. After that, join in with the bleats and beats of the Vegetable Orchestra.

Cook and Line CBeebies Swashbuckling Pirates will be appearing live at Barclaycard presents British Summer Time Hyde Park for a rip-roaring pirate adventure! Full of fun songs and silly slapstick comedy, their energetic and interactive performance will be loved by children of all ages.

And even your teens will find something to keep them entertained, whether it is family comedy from the Cuban Brothers or visiting the Teen Zone or Urban Area.

The Summer Stage will be dedicated to the young rising stars of YouTube, with performances from: talented musician Bethan Leadley; lifestyle vlogger Helen Anderson will be sharing fashion and beauty tips and taking questions from the audience; Hazel Hayes – Chewing Sand, comedic duo The Mandeville Sisters, Becca Lammin and Grace Victory, Ugly Face of Beauty will all be there to share their lifestyle tips.  There is also the chance to get that all important selfie with your favourite YouTube Star in our Guest Area, where meet and greets will be taking place all day long.

The Urban Area will be filled with a mix of urban sports from BMX to Parkour.  Watch the Extreme BMX team as pedal power takes to the horizon.  As long as it’s got two wheels and plenty of stamina it’s game on, as these talented young riders showcase their tricks mid-air, including all your favourites and a few yet to be invented.  From the same platforms and straight from the movies, check out the Parkour Team as they negotiate their way around the arena, regardless of obstacles.  This is also your chance to get involved, with workshops available for a taste of the street vibe scene.

James King, Senior Vice President, AEG Live comments: “The line up for this year’s family content day is our best yet. We have gathered together the very best in children’s, teen and family entertainment and it is a fantastic way to round off an exceptional 2 weeks of comedy, music and entertainment.”

Daniel Mathieson, Head of Experiential and Partnership Marketing for Barclaycard, said: “Barclaycard presents British Summer Time Hyde Park is one of the musical highlights of the summer and this year we have another fantastic line-up of headline artists and bands.  From Kylie and Taylor Swift to The Who, Blur and The Strokes, there’s something for everyone, so fans should act fast to avoid missing out.”

With so many activities, arts and crafts, live entertainment and family bonding to be had, Sunday 28th June is one to put on the family calendar. Don’t miss out on your chance to make some amazing family memories that will be talked about for years to come!

From today, as a Barclaycard customer you can get exclusive pre-sale as well as discounted early bird tickets ahead of everyone else, but hurry as the early bird opens up to fans and other groups from 9am Wednesday 29 April before tickets go on general sale at 9am Tuesday 5 May 2015.

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