We have just returned from a short break at CenterParcs Sherwood Forest.
It has been a difficult month or so for us health-wise and for a while I wondered whether we were going to actually get there, but we made it in the end and I wanted to let people know how great it was.
I am not writing about the activities and venue, as CenterParcs is somewhere that will be as good as you want to make it, you can choose to sit in your lodge all day or you can get out there and experience your surroundings, pool, activities etc.
What I wanted to let others know about is the wonderful experiences we had as people who have to deal with allergies.
Our first experience this holiday was with the takeaway service,
what we ordered was by no way suitable for Tim, but then he was safely tucked up in bed so we had pizza, but I was really impressed that it was obviously a normal question for them to ask while we were ordering if there were any allergies.
Our second experience, and our first outing for food during our stay was to Dexters
I decided to pop in to see what was available before taking the boys, while they were busy playing, as it can be difficult if you suddenly get somewhere and discover that there is nothing that Tim is able to eat.
The woman I spoke to was really friendly and helpful, she was really apologetic that she had a couple of meals she had to serve, but would get straight back to me with the allergy menu, it only took moments for her to come straight out with the menu and had no problems getting any of the products that I wanted to look at just to be on the ‘safe-side’
It was great that Tim was able to eat something that looked just like everyone elses, being able to have his own hand-made burger and chips exactly the same in everyway as his brothers (other than the cheese that Sammy always has to have!)
On our last day we ummed and aahed about when to leave, should we eat there or leave earlier and find something on the way home, we finally decided we were on holiday so might as well make the most of it, assuming we could find somewhere else to eat. So once again I went ahead to see what was available, the first place I visited was the Sports Cafe
Once again the first person that I spoke to knew exactly where to find the allergy menu. On this occasion as it was mid-morning and the kitchen staff weren’t too busy she had even got one of the chefs to come out to me incase he could offer any additional help. He was really helpful, he worked his way through the menu for me, telling me exactly what was and wasn’t suitable from the children’s menu, and when he found anything that was not suitable immediately came up with options, for example the children’s burger contained dairy, but he would happily make him one using the ingredients they use for the adults.
Tim chose to have meatballs and pasta, which according to the menu came with grated cheese, I had no issues with it arriving with no cheese, but they replaced the cheese with some chips instead so that he didn’t feel left out.
When we ordered I made sure that I informed our waiter (Olly), letting him know that I had already discussed it with the kitchen and knew it would be suitable, but I was really impressed that he immediately went to the kitchen to check before putting it through the system. He was great with both boys, taking the time to speak to them and in particular listen to Sammy allowing him to order for himself. When it came to pudding it was nice that there was something that Tim could have, and once again Olly was very quick to go and ensure that it would be suitable for him.
So thank you CenterParcs for enabling Tim to feel ‘normal’ and having a great medical centre, when we think his allergies flared up from something he ate on the way to holiday
Sad little boy moments before finally deciding we needed to go to the medical centre
I think these two faces show what the boys thought to the food they got on holiday.