Where does the holiday club run?

Currently the club is running at Ben Rhydding Scout Hut, Wheatley Lane, Ilkley, LS29 8ET. We hire the venue so this may change in future holidays.

When does it run?

In the Christmas, Easter and in the Summer holidays. We follow the Bradford Local Authority holiday schedule. Sessions are run if we have sufficient funds.

Who is it for?

Any young person with an additional need that is diagnosed or being investigated. 

How many places are there?

Usually there are 20 supported places available in each session, and five places for young people who need to attend with their own DBS-checked PA. Please note during the pandemic the number of young people we can accommodate is reduced in line with Government regulations. 

How much does it cost?

  • Standard cost: £20 per day 

  • Families with more than one special needs child: £20 for first child, £10 for additional children

  • Families eligible for free school meals: free with a refundable deposit on attendance

  • Children who have to attend with their own DBS-checked PA: £7 per day

How have you responded to the pandemic as a club?

The medical needs of some of the young people who attend holiday club places them at greater risk of Covid complications. For this reason we took advice from Bradford Council's Complex Health and Disability Social Care team to establish a new way of working during lockdown. We offered individual family/support bubble sessions where just one party was on site and the young people were cared for by their parents or regular carers. Our staff were on hand to support and set up activities, but socially distanced and wearing PPE. The site was cleaned thoroughly between groups and all sensory and craft materials etc were provided fresh for each group. 


From Christmas 2020, we returned to our usual service of providing respite care where small groups of young people are supported by staff, strictly in line with Government Covid regulations.   

Can I attend with my young person?

During the pandemic we have offered some sessions where parents can attend. In general however, we are a holiday club rather than a stay and play so we offer places for young people to be looked after by our staff, or by their own DBS-checked personal assistant. If you are looking for a stay and play where parents and non-disabled siblings can also come, please contact us as we can suggest some other excellent local schemes, depending on your child’s needs and age.


We prefer parents not to stay for several reasons:


  • As a charity, LS29 already offers lots of activities for the whole family. Part of the purpose for us in running a holiday club is to give parents and siblings some respite time.


  • All adults who are working closely and regularly with young people in our setting need to be DBS-checked.


  • It can be unsettling for young people attending the scheme with a staff member or PA to care for them, if they become aware that other children have their parents present.


In exceptional circumstances we will allow parents to stay on site – for example if their young person requires medical interventions our staff haven’t been trained to offer, and no healthcare assistant is available.


What if my young person might struggle to settle in?

Please contact us to discuss and we will try to send any information, a social story and/or pictures that will help you to prepare them. On their first day, you can meet their keyworker to talk. Depending on current Covid regulations, you may be able to stay at the club with your young person for a while until you feel that they are comfortable. Some parents who have traveled a distance choose to stay in Ilkley for the day during the first session so we can call them for an early collection if their young person needs it. However this is unusual and the majority of young people settle in very quickly.

What do the young people do?

Activities include trips, sensory and messy play, arts and crafts, baking, physical games and sports, outdoors learning, music, life skills practice and community visits.

What about lunch?

We provide healthy snacks and drinks, and we usually also provide a free hot lunch. Your young person may prefer familiar food from home though so feel free to send a packed lunch. We ask parents/carers to give us as much information as possible about dietary and feeding needs on booking. Please do not send food that contains nuts due to allergies. 

Can you accommodate a young person with high level medical needs?

We do our best to accommodate young people with complex medical needs and have a designated session for young people who need a high level of medical support with a nurse on site. If our staff are not able to support them, there may be the option of sending them with someone who can – they are welcome to attend with their own DBS-checked PA.

Medication will only be administered if prescribed by a doctor with the child's name and dosage on the medication bottle. Medication must be in date. Children will not be allowed to stay at holiday club if parents do not bring life-saving medication with them such as EpiPens, inhalers or seizure medication. Permission to administer medication forms must be signed by parent/carer.

Can you accommodate challenging behaviour?

Again, we can’t promise but we will do our best to accommodate young people with conditions that cause challenging behaviours, and have a designated session for young people with complex needs. We have staff who are experienced in managing behaviour and a high staffing ratio with some 1:1 places available in each session. We recognise all behaviours are a form of communication, so our staff support young people to have a voice through the use of preferred communication methods such as Makaton signing, communication aids and visual time tables.


We support young people to build resilience, promoting physical and mental wellbeing to help reduce crisis situations into learning opportunities.


There may also be the option of your young person attending with their own DBS-checked PA(s) if our staff members aren't qualified to meet their need.