Young Naturalists Enjoy an Inspiring Easter

Thanks to your donations, local children enjoyed a wildlife-filled Easter at Seaton Deleval Hall. Hear how you’re making a difference with Alana Dunton, Project Worker with Children North East.

A huge thank you to NHSN members and the North East Young Naturalist Appeal for giving us the funds needed to be able to take two groups of young people to Seaton Delaval Hall during the Easter Holidays. This was a fantastic opportunity for young people to experience nature and visit a space away from their direct local area. Many of the young people we work with do not have access to natural spaces and some do not leave their local area. They enjoyed the sense of space and appreciated the natural surroundings, one young male said ‘it is absolutely beautiful here‘ and this was a thought echoed by them all.  

During the day we looked at some of the bat species that can be found at the hall and listened to recordings of their calls, had a look for some in the hidden crevices of the hall and played a game to tune into our hearing ability like bats do. The young people thoroughly enjoyed a scavenger hunt through the grounds with some of them finding interesting things like wasp galls, feathers and ‘nutella nut’ (hazelnut) shells which they didn’t realise grew on trees. Along the way we did some bird spotting, seeing pheasants, long-tailed tits, jackdaws and others at the feeders; we even had time to try and get a birds-eye/ant view with a mirror walk through the trees. The highlight of the day for many was seeing newts in the pond, for many this was a first and they were amazed by them. We ended the day in the play park surrounded by wild garlic and flowers in the woodland, for one young male seeing all the different flowers and trees was his highlight.

The groups were made up of young people attending our Newcastle and North Tyneside HAF, some of the group are SEND, some act as carers, others have unsettled times at home so the trip was a bit of time out for them, with friends and people they feel safe with, exploring and having fun in nature like all young people should have the chance to do. So, thanks again for allowing us to do that for them, as one young girl said it was ‘the best day of my life‘. 

Alana Dunton
Project Worker, Children North East

Alana loves all things nature and has a passion for sharing that with young people, showing them the benefits of spending time outdoors. She is also self employed, working in  peat monitoring and as an Assistant Bat Surveyor.