Warren Hayden: Taking the girls for a walk with dinosaurs

Dinosaur theme park Lost Kingdom at Paultons Park                                   

Picture: Emily Whiting PPP-161105-125751001
Dinosaur theme park Lost Kingdom at Paultons Park Picture: Emily Whiting PPP-161105-125751001
Mo Farrah after missing out on a gold medal
				 Picture: Adam Davy

VERITY LUSH: Leave me to browse the make-up counter in peace

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On a recent school inset day my daughters screeched with excitement when I told them where we were going to be spending their time away from school. The destination was Paultons Park in the New Forest.

On a recent school inset day my daughters screeched with excitement when I told them where we were going to be spending their time away from school. The destination was Paultons Park in the New Forest.

99 heaven, but not for Warren

99 heaven, but not for Warren

Now, to you and me this is a family theme park and a great place to take the kids and have as much fun as possible.

To Caitlin and Alyssa it is a place that gives them unrelenting and thrilling fun for a whole day.

Both my daughters get excited about visiting the local park so you can imagine the grins on their faces when we jumped in the car and made our way west on the M27.

As a family we were looking forward to it more than ever because this time we’d get to explore the new attraction, Lost Kingdom. Apparently it was inspired by the era of fierce velociraptors, flying pterodactyls, giant triceratops and the mighty tyrannosaurus rex. As soon as we entered the park we consulted the map which pointed us in the direction of the Lost Kingdom and when we got there we could hear and see large dinosaurs roaring at us.

First we had a go on one of the two new rollercoasters, The Flight of the Pterosaur, which travels up to 35mph and swoops high and low. It was so thrilling that as soon as we stepped off both girls asked if we could re-join the queue and have another go.

We soon made our way to the ride that apparently ‘only the bravest explorers will take on’ – The Velociraptor.

We were feeling very brave, so we joined the short queue. It had some serious speed and some tight bends and certainly gave us all an experience we won’t forget.

The new Dinosaur Encounter was another thrilling experience where you get to meet and touch a realistic walking dinosaur. It was so realistic both my daughters were looking unsure as we got close. But with a bit of encouragement they petted the beast with the sharp teeth with amazement while a member of staff took photos with my phone, a really nice touch.

We had a great time in the new Lost Kingdom but there was still the rest of the park to explore, including one of our favourite rides and the one we normally spend the most time on, the Magma.

We were strapped in, raised 82ft into the sky and while we were enjoying the stunning view of the rest of the park, plunged back to the bottom. Such a stomach-churning but enjoyable and addictive experience.

We had more than six hours of undiluted, pure family fun and we can’t wait to return.

Trip to freezer as 99 passed me by

It’s summer and school holidays are around the corner. This means many things are about to happen, including wanting to barbecue anything and everything.

Who wants to slave over a hot stove in a humid kitchen when you can be out in the sun with fresh air and that beautiful BBQ smell?

Then there is getting sunburned in strange places. No matter how much sun lotion I apply to my pale skin, I always seem to miss a bit and end up with a sore patch.

There is also filling the ice cube tray and that awkward slow walk between the sink and the freezer trying not to spill any water.

I know there is one thing that will cause the words ‘please can we have one?’ to come out of my daughters’ mouths and that is when they hear the ice cream van making its way towards our road. When I was a child there was nothing worse than when you were hoping to tuck into a 99 complete with flake, sauce and sprinkles, and mum would say ‘no, there’s a choc ice in the freezer, have one of those’.