Lily and I are nearly-newbies to soft play as we’ve only really been a couple of times to Toyfields, our closest centre just a few miles away in Leigh, which my Mum discovered shortly after we moved last year.
I really liked Toyfields the first time we went and whilst I still think it’s an awesome place for kiddos, the area for toddlers is quite small and Lily quickly becomes bored. I also find that there isn’t much room in the seating area when you’ve got prams and high-chairs scattered around as the norm (I’m just being honest!) but it’s a lovely little place all the same and I’m sure we’ll pop back sometime soon as we haven’t been for a while and it’s handy being just down the road and all.
A few weeks ago I was frantically searching for something to do with Lily the next day and I came across a listing for Prendoolys, another soft play centre just by the train station in Earlestown, Newton-le-Willows.
Again, I haven’t ventured all that far since we moved up here so Newton-le-Willows was another new place (or at least somewhere I hadn’t been for years and years) for us to go and explore for the day.
Whilst the town itself is blooming fabulous and has such a warm feeling about it (so much so that we’re considering moving that way), I wasn’t so sure about Prendoolys at first glance from the outside but when you go in, it’s clear to see that it’s fantastic for kids and very colourful, clean and friendly.
I didn’t take too much notice of the large area for the older children but for the under 4’s there’s a big padded area with steps up and round to a slide, a hold-on roundabout, some noughts and crosses and heaps of balls in a big pool underneath. For the smaller toddlers and babies, there’s also another padded space with squishy ride-ons, blocks, mirrors etc.
Inbetween the under 4’s section and the older children’s area there’s a wide open space that’s filled with tables for us parents to relax with a cuppa and cake (or instead completely abandon and follow your bubba around everywhere like I do praying your belongings are safe and other kids don’t hide your shoes!) and there’s sit-in rides dotted around as well which cost around 50p. I know this because Lily insisted on going on a couple of them before shouting ‘off’ and diving forward a few seconds in every time like she always does!
The first time we went it was just Lily and I and we had a really magical day stopping for a quick break and some lunch before carrying on with our giggles and silliness.
Lunch was quick and easy. There’s tons of highchairs available and a menu on every table so you can choose what you’d like to eat/drink. You order by going up to the counter and they bring everything over to you when it’s ready. Lily had her drink in a open cup which is something we’ve started introducing with meals (following the success of this trip) and she thought it was awesome as it was still a novelty at the time. She dipped her crisps and yogurt spoon in so they all went soggy but apparently that’s how she likes it as it was still gobbled up completely!
The second time we went (a few days ago) we took my Mum and I forgot to take any cash out to pay the £4 entry fee. Luckily, they were happy to open a tab and popped my card behind the counter so we could order food and drinks and pay it all off at the end.
I’d highly recommend Prendoolys to anybody local who’s looking for a happy, cheerful environment to entertain their kiddos and enjoy a hot cuppa (with something naughty on the side as well?)
We picked up a leaflet as they run daily toddler activities during term time (although I’m told they are closed on Mondays) so we’ll be going back in the next few weeks to see what’s on offer.
Have you been to Prendoolys?
Are you a big fan of soft play with your little one(s)?