Last week we were invited to come along and experience the sold-out event, Holiday to Space with Q Pootle 5. It was a special event put on by the Royal Museums Greenwich as part of their Holiday to Space series, held at the Royal Observatory. I previously posted a blog about this event which you can read here.
Our day started off at 10am but we left about 30mins before as we only live down the road. Due to the location of our home, we ended up at the South entrance of the park, near Greenwich High Street so we had to walk up to the Royal Observatory through the park. It took us about 15 mins to walk up there and LO managed to get up without a stroller as I decided against taking it. Baby Girl was at home with Daddy P so it was just Mummy and LO time – something we’ve not done in such a long time. When we reached the top, we were a tad thirsty so headed into the Pavillion Cafe where we stocked up on water, juice and sandwiches as LO didn’t have any breakfast before we left – we’re usually still in bed at 8am haha! 🙂
Once we arrived outside the Royal Observatory we could see all the other families also waiting for the event. Like I mentioned earlier, the event had been sold out – I never knew it was so popular! When the staff opened the Observatory gates, families were kindly escorted into the Peter Harrison Planetarium.
The day’s itinerary was as follows…
| Watch Q Pootle 5 shows in the Peter Harrison Planetarium
After “checking in” we headed downstairs to the main planetarium. We were amazed, neither me or LO had seen such a place before so it was a special moment (for me!) and I could see that he was really curious to discover what was around him. He gets really fidgety when he gets excited! LO finally managed to calm down and we sat while the museum’s astrologist, Brendan, explained what we’ll be watching and introduced Nick Butterworth to us. Nick is the creator, author and illustrator of Q Pootle 5 which is a children’s TV cartoon series about friendly aliens aired on Cbeebies. You can watch episodes here
We watched two episodes of Q Pootle 5; the first one was about Q Pootle 5 and his friends join Planet Dave in awaiting the arrival of Comet Gordon. The gang put on a lovely show with music, bunting and more. The second show was about a satellite that accidentally fell on planet Oki Doki. Q Pootle 5 and his friends help to repair the satellite then helped to launch it back into orbit.
| Creator Nick Butterworth talks to us about how he created Q Pootle 5
When we had watched the shows, we were split into two teams; red and blue. We were Team Red. We were then escorted into a small room where Nick Butterworth talked about how he came to create Q Pootle 5. It was lovely to hear him explain how much planning is involved when turning a 2D illustration into a 3D animation. There is a lot of science and technical stuff at work here! Nick told us there was about a team of forty involved in the making of Q Pootle 5.
| Participate in a group space activity
Once the talk was over, we swapped with Team Blue and went into another little room where astrologist Brendan set up our space activity. The kids learnt about how shadows on the moon, what moon craters are and how they’re made. Brendan then asked all the children to grab a bit of plasticine and make their own crater. LO had other ideas; he didn’t want to turn his long sausage-shaped plasticine into a moon crater and preferred to keep it straight. My little boy for some reason is rarely in the mood to take part in group activities, he’d much prefer just to play by himself or in one-on-one.
| Nick Butterworth’s book signing
After playing with our plasticine, LO needed a quick toilet break. On our way back from the toilet, it was time to get ready to head on out downstairs onto the planetarium’s terrace where Nick Butterworth would be book-signing. We were a little early so I decided to take us to the museum shop – a big fat mistake!
Everything was fine at the start; we looked around the shop, played with a few toys then dum-dum-duummmmm!! LO wanted to buy the large space rocket. It was £15 and I wasn’t ready to part with the cash so tried using different strategies to get him out of the shop. It worked but then once we were outside – bam! – LO pulled out of the bag a big, fat (not to mention loud) tantrum. The more I tried to talk to him and calm him down, the louder he screamed and whined.
I knew what it meant. It was time for a nap. He had been up for too long and he was ready to sleep.
We didn’t have the stroller and still waiting for Nick to arrive, I didn’t want to leave and not get the book signed as we had come all this way and who knew when we would see Nick again to have him sign it. I stuck to my guns and didn’t cave in by buying him the toy. We sat down in the terrace cafe and I gave him a few dinosaur sweeties to try and kick-start his energy. It worked a little. We eventually got our booked signed then thanked Nick, his wife and the RMG staff for hosting a brilliant day out and headed home. We walked back down the way we came and stopped at the little ice cream shop for a little ice lolly to cool us down.
It was a brilliant day out and we had lovely weather. When we got home, we snuggled up with Baby Girl and just chilled out for the rest of the day. A perfect ending to a perfect day. 🙂
Have you ever visited the Royal Observatory? What do you make of it?
– watch our day out: –
NB. We were invited to this event by the Royal Museums Greenwich. All words, opinions and photos are my own. Photos that are not mine are credited respectively.