As promised another blog this week telling you all about our trip to Chatsworth. As this is a first for Ben’s Centre we did not know how many would turn up, if any! Our clients do not have the best memories in the world. We had three clients who came, which may not seem very many, but to us it was a breakthrough. The three who came were really excited and as we packed our picnic up the staff became aware how lovely this day was going to be for them. The mini-bus arrived on time and we set off in sunshine but rain too. The comments we heard driving out was that they couldn’t remember when they had left Sheffield before and they had forgotten what green fields looked like!The weather seemed to get worse as we drove out but when we arrived we decided to go into the farm and there they have a building specifically for people to eat their picnics. As we all settled down and ate the sun began to shine and the staff knew that this was going to be a very good day. We spent such an enjoyable time then looking at the animals in the farm, especially some two day old piglets. We gave our two digital cameras to the clients and they had such fun taking photographs all day. You can see some of their lovely photos. After the farm we walked down to the river and climbed the ruin of the castle where Mary Queen of Scots was imprisoned. The park looked amazing with all the autumn colours and the sun on the water. We were all just enjoying the view and the peace when we saw a very big stag, walking on his own down to the river. It was a beautiful sight. We watched his progress as he later re-joined the herd and all his adoring females. The clients had great enjoyment trying to capture him on camera. Walking back we couldn’t decide whether to go and have a cup of tea or go on a conducted ride up to the hunting tower. The ride won and we all got into a covered wagon, pulled by a tractor and had what was such an interesting ride as it took an hour, and we learnt a lot about the estate and also had some sensational views too. Although it was cold the weather was perfect and I think we saw everything at its best. It was time to come home and we all felt tired being in the fresh air all day but it had been a memorable day. Back at the centre we all had our cup of tea and some cake and generally chatted about the highlights of the day. The clients wanted to know when the next one would be! We received some health funding money which allowed us to go on this trip and we are so grateful for this. I’m sure that this trip will have longer reaching effects with our clients than we will ever know. It just seemed to open up a window to show what is out there and gave a taster of what a day out in the country can hold. We are now planning our next trip. Ben’s Centre is closed next week so the blog will be back the week of November 3rd