We pride ourselves on listening to feedback from customers, continually adapting and improving our outdoor programme and facilities. Please view a few examples of feedback we receive below or on our Facebook Reviews.
I can honestly say this has been one of the best residentials I have been on. I think that both children and staff will apply their personal learning to life. The children have been encouraged to be more independent cooperate and make decisions. I have observed growth in confidence, change of mindset and greater perseverance.
Rossmore Primary School, Cheshire. February 2019
Our experience at Arete Outdoor Centre has been totally amazing. The instructors were knowledgeable, patient and supportive. They evaluated the activities and ensured that children are given independence and responsibilities. The children have enjoyed a range of activities that build on their skills and introduce many new ones.
Foley Park November 2018
Instructors adapted the activities for each group, setting high expectations delivering knowledgeable informative sessions with a lot of fun too.
Bishop of Hereford School July 2017
Really impressed with all the instructors at Arete. They were very knowledgeable and went above and beyond to make our trip memorable. The students achieved so much on the trip, organisation skills and the ability to push themselves further.
Walkwood Middle School. June 2017
Why is the centre so valuable for Special Needs students?
The staff are second to none in their ability to weigh up characters and engage students. I have worked with SEN students at Llanrug for several years. ‘Year upon year’ I am impressed with the ability of centre staff to ‘engage, challenge and bring out the best in our students’. We often bring students who are challenging in their behaviours and attitudes. Through prior negotiation we are able to plan activities that, whilst still being safe, put our students in positions where they are ‘thoroughly challenged’. This is generally within Llanrug’s normal operations, but on occasions, this has involved utilising: staff, equipment and ‘relationships that are already developed’ to take students camping to different parts of the country in order to ‘get the most from our students’.
It is quite easy (and safe), for instructors to engage to a basic level with students, offering them options to ‘take part’ or to ‘try a bit harder’. However, it is a more challenging instructor who uses his / her personality to the full, to engage with students to a much greater degree. On occasions this ‘probing, provoking, pushing’ will not succeed. However, on the occasions where it doesn’t, I have always seen instructors who work endlessly to ‘repair’ any temporary damage to their relationship. In fact, in every case I can think of, this ‘development in relationship’ has always brought about a positive outcome for the student.
When our aims as teachers are like the following: enjoy, engage, improve self esteem, reflect upon our own learning, engage with others (especially peers) etc..- LLanrug Centre has always helped us reach our aims.
Whilst I love the outdoors and all the stimulating activities that can be done. My motivation as a teacher is to ‘use the outdoor and adventurous environment as a tool’. As a teaching practitioner, I believe that LLanrug is the perfect partner in meeting these goals.
Outdoor Education Co-ordinator
Wyre Forest School
I have been taking parties of school children to the Llanrug Outdoor Activities Centre for the last 28 years! As a passionate believer in the value of learning in the outdoors, I have never failed to be impressed by the service and opportunities offered at Llanrug. Students who attend our courses leave the centre with a wide range of outdoor skills but, more importantly, leave with confidence, assuredness and a large number of life skills which are not able to be taught in a normal school environment. The members of staff have always been of the highest calibre; technical experts in the range of high risk activities offered and consummate educationalists, tailoring the activities and challenges to the needs of our students. These qualities have always been our overriding reason for choosing Llanrug above all other establishments.
Christopher Whitehead Language College
February 2014 (and still returning every currently up to 2019)
Why would I chose Llanrug over other outdoor providers and what are the benefits for my students?
I have taken large groups of Primary School children to Llanrug for the past 15 years. Llanrug [now Arete] provides activities that stimulate and educate children in important ways beyond the classroom.
I have been an Educational visits co-ordinator for over 10 years and I have previously worked as a primary Advanced Skills Teacher for the LEA PE team. My work as an AST has strengthened my belief that colleagues must work together to improve standards of teaching and learning and Llanrug staff have the ability to engage both students and teachers in the learning experiences.
I have taken groups of KS2 children ranging from Y3 – Y6 and courses are unique to the aims of each group. The courses involve challenging adventures in demanding settings. Course leaders have a natural ability to develop the children’s understanding of environmental awareness through everything they do. Even the youngest pupils are encouraged to: carry out the weather forecast; carry out eco duties; set up the dining hall for meals or take responsibility for looking after centre equipment.
Having tried other commercial providers during the early stages of my career it was very clear from my first visit to Llanrug that the centre is unique and very special. My pupils always returned from other providers having had fun and a great time, but I never felt fully involved in their experiences. As a member of staff I was encouraged to spent time away from the group! Pupils were led by young enthusiastic staff but their training was limited and the pupils could not explore beyond the confines of this. I have always admired the high level of professionalism presented by Llanrug staff and their experience, competencies, technical knowledge and training allow them to provide the most challenging learning for all pupils. Every activity is a journey with Llanrug. I have never had a pupil refuse to try an activity and this is largely due to the fact that they are so involved in helping and supporting others along the way. With other providers pupils regularly refused to try activities after sitting watching peers for up to an hour and getting very nervous whilst waiting for their turn. When I visit Llanrug I continue to gain new experiences with pupils year on year and it is a pleasure to watch their personal development in such a short space of time.
I have been an EVC since 2003 and Llanrug OEC has also provided me with the opportunities to further develop my own knowledge of Outdoor Education. I have attended several 1 week training courses for teachers at Llanrug OEC and participated in an open canoeing CPD course for teachers in Scotland. The staff are excellent at providing courses to meet individual needs and have offered bespoke courses when colleagues and I have requested them.
I can highly recommend the centre with its friendly, highly motivating staff and beautiful North Wales scenery. My pupils continue to thrive after their visits and many choose to return with their high schools.
Claire Harris (EVC & KS2 Teacher) Great Malvern Primary School.