Shropshire outdoor activity centre to support alternative education programme

An outdoor activity centre has formed a partnership with a company to support the alternative education programme it delivers.

Gavin Cowan, The Crossbar Group’s managing director, with Zoe Watson, sales and marketing manager at Alderford Lake
Gavin Cowan, The Crossbar Group’s managing director, with Zoe Watson, sales and marketing manager at Alderford Lake

The team at Alderford Lake, which provides a range of water-based activities in Whitchurch, will help to enhance the programme offered by The Crossbar Group’s Crossbar Alternative Provision (CAP).

Providing bespoke educational opportunities for primary and secondary school students, along with post-16 students, the CAP programme is designed for young people in need of a different environment and approach to education.

CAP students can now look forward to visits to Alderford Lake becoming part of their itinerary.

Gavin Cowan, managing director of The Crossbar Group, said: “We are really fortunate to link in with brilliant community partners and are delighted to be able to form a partnership with the team at Alderford Lake.

“It means we will be able to take some vulnerable children and young adults to Alderford to experience just what an amazing facility it is.

“It will allow them to get in touch with nature and work on their personal development, as well as their social, emotional and mental health.”

He added: "The professionalism of the staff at Alderford will be brilliant for our students to see, as will being exposed to an environment they wouldn’t perhaps ordinarily have the opportunity to encounter.

“Crossbar Alternative Provision is all about helping students through their education, but we understand that has to look a little bit different to the mainstream education environment.

“It’s about finding the right locations and the right community partners, so we are very excited to take the students to such a wonderful facility as Alderford Lake, which can only benefit them.”

Alderford Lake, which boasts over 14 acres of water, provides visitors with the opportunity to enjoy wild swimming alongside a host of water-based activities, including canoeing, kayaking and paddle boarding.

It also features an aqua park – an inflatable playground on the lake – while walking around the lake is also very popular.

Zoe Watson, Alderford Lake’s sales and marketing manager, welcomes the opportunity to form a partnership with The Crossbar Group’s Crossbar Alternative Provision programme.

She said: “We are always looking for community partnerships and are eager to help those that perhaps wouldn’t thrive in a normal classroom.

“We hire based on personality rather than experience at Alderford.

“This is just an extension of that really to help provide the students with the opportunities they need.”

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