West Berkshire Council

Activity Team West Berkshire

Outdoor activities, in partnership with the Adventure Dolphin charity, based in Pangbourne

Activity Team West Berkshire provides outdoor activities for the residents of West Berkshire and the surrounding area at Dolphin Centre, Pangbourne and Waterside Centre, Newbury.  

The Adventure Dolphin (Pangbourne) Charity compliments this offer with British Canoe Star Awards and Climbing Courses in the evening, adult coach training and canoe/climbing sessions. Pangbourne Canoe Club are the racing group representing the charity nationally.

What's on?

Holiday Programme 2017

pdf icon "Taste of Adventure" days [2Mb] are a great way for children aged 8 to 13 to try out something new.  They're varied and fun and include the following activities:

  • Survival skills
  • Bushcraft
  • Canoeing
  • Climbing
  • Archery
  • Orienteering

With fun and friendly staff looking after the children this is a fabulous start to what we hope to be a great experience, to enjoy the outdoors whilst making new friends. Timings for the day are 10am to 4pm, bring a packed lunch, a change of clothes and a friendly smile!

You can pdf icon view the full summer holiday programme online [679kb].

Summer 2017 - British Canoeing and National Indoor Climbing Award Scheme

The summer staff team have a great wealth of paddling and climbing experience to pass on to children and young people. Many of them joined the Centre as young people themselves, which gives them an insight into what makes for a fun, enjoyable learning experience. Our staff pride themselves on delivering high standards which are reflected in being awarded the prestigious British Canoeing Quality Mark.

Children and young people can apply to take part in British Canoeing Paddle Power courses, which are either two full days or four half days in length, plus the famous Friday Paddle, a chance for children and young people to go on a journey, dress up if they wish, and have an adventure. For those children who prefer land activities we offer the National Indoor Climbing Award Scheme throughout the summer.

See all course information on pdf icon our summer Canoeing and Climbing leaflet [2Mb].

Hiring/Letting of the Dolphin Centre

The Activity Team currently host a number of external partners at The Dolphin Centre to broaden the Sport and Leisure offer. These partners are:

  • Boxercise
  • The Art Group
  • Pilates
  • Baby Gym
  • Scouts

If you are interested in hiring the facility on a long term weekly basis please contact the ATWB for a tour of the facilities.

After School Sessions - Monday to Friday 3.30pm-5.30pm (at Pangbourne or Newbury)

Carl and Giles working with Top Club Team offer an "Introduction to Paddling" from April to September and an "Introduction to Climbing" from October to March. The courses are five weeks long, and aimed at Years 4, 5 and 6.  They provide an opportunity for children and young people's first experience of adventurous activities.

Duke of Edinburgh (DofE) - Monday 7pm-9pm (every two weeks at Pangbourne)

Nicola working with the DofE Team, offers the Bronze, Silver and Gold Award to young people aged 14-25. They are encouraged by our friendly and supportive staff to complete the full award through the DofE system. The award consists of

  • Physical
  • Skill
  • Volunteering
  • Residential (Gold) Sections 

It also comprises an Expedition module which can be undertaken walking or paddling. We are currently not accepting new participants until 1 September 2017 but please register your interest for the 2017/2018 intake.

Many of our DofE participants support our programme to complete their volunteering section of the Award, these young people are known as buddies, and help with climbing, paddling, Adventure Service Challenge (ASC - see below) and holiday programmes.

The Adventure Service Challenge (ASC) - Wednesdays, once every two weeks, 6.30pm-8pm (Pangbourne or Newbury)

Our friendly staff Gerry and Gringo look after the groups at Newbury, whilst Giles and Dom at Pangbourne. There are two challenges, intended for ages 8-11 (Juniors) and 11-14 (Seniors). The ASC group meets every two weeks on a Wednesday, and the package includes British Canoeing Course or NiCAS Climbing in the summer, and a trip away.

Children with Disabilities

Children with disabilities are welcome to attend our mainstream activities, but we like to meet with them beforehand so we can make sure they get the most out of what we have on offer.  We run an Inclusion Club on Wednesday afternoons where your child can be introduced and where we can work out ways to make sure they feel included in our sessions.  If you'd like to come along, or have a chat about this, please drop Dave Treagus a line at dave.treagus@westberks.gov.uk, or use the contact details below.


To make a booking or to find out more about available activities, please contact the ATWB.

Activities and Resources for Schools

We also offer a range of activities and resources for schools.

About ATWB

The Dolphin and Waterside Centres are accredited by British Canoeing through their Quality Mark and the National Indoor Climbing Award Scheme. The Activity Team are an approved provider through the Adventurous Activity Licence Scheme - Licence No L13246 - Provider R0588.

The Activity Team works in partnership with British Canoeing, Get Berkshire Active, Pangbourne Rotary Club, Equal Adventure, Castle SchoolBrookfields School and West Berkshire Council's Community Services. The partnership has enabled vulnerable and disabled people to participate in sport.  Currently the team are supporting the national This Girl can campaign to help raise the aspirations of females and encourage them to take up sports.

Who To Contact

Contact details for West Berkshire's Activity Team

0118 984 3162