Quite a few months ago, Emma was introduced to Bing. It was one of those spur of the moment things,
as she was screaming about something that I now can’t for the life of me remember, we turned on CBeebies and there he was. She was transfixed, and almost immediately stopped crying. And the rest, as they say, is history. Emma’s love of Bing has obviously manifested a lot of mummy guilt but having now let that go and embraced the bizarreness of the programme, which still doesn’t quite make sense – it makes her happy so this mummy is guilt-free.
I saw that Drusillas Park – a zoo near to Lewes – were doing a Bing Meet and Greet, so I decided to go with a friend whose little girl is equally enthralled by the bumbling bunny rabbit. It wasn’t the best weather and we knew we were in for a busy day as it is half term in the UK, but off we went. It was equally exciting as neither of the girls had been to a zoo before, so we knew there would be loads to see and do.
Drusillas Park is located off the A27 in Polegate, which is only a little further than Lewes, and excellently sign-posted. I say this, because I couldn’t get my Google Maps to work, so that was a big relief as my directional skills aren’t the best. As we entered, I was stunned with how big the place was, having only been to farms so far – the car park went on for miles and it was (as expected) packed. We seemed to pick the time when everyone was arriving too! This said, it was no trouble getting a space and there were people on hand to usher you in the right direction.
My friend and I bought a family of 2 ticket online, as it saved £4 and the discounts increase the more people are in your party. Top tip if you are meeting a friend there: arrange a meeting place as we didn’t and there is minimal mobile phone reception! It felt like back in the old days when I’d meet my school friends outside the library on a Saturday haha. Anyway we sorted that out soon enough and had a lovely lunch at the Explorer Cafe. The girls also really enjoyed it as they could spy on the older kids around them making much more noise.
Whilst waiting for Bing & Flop to make their grand appearance, we had a look round. There was a great courtyard with ice cream stand, donuts and lots of snacks, as well as lots of picnic tables to sit around. There is also a fabulous play area with outdoor sprinklers and a paddling pool, so will be fab when the weather gets sunnier (please). We spotted the Thomas The Tank Engine train and thought we’d queue for that…Emma loved this and was squealing all the way round!
Next we decided to check out the animals, remembering that we are at a zoo….I thought this was fantastic and had great access with the buggies too. We saw capuchin monkeys, meerkats, pygmy goats, cows, donkeys, chickens and loads more. Here are a few snaps along the way!
Finally it was time to see Bing and it got really crazy queuing up – so many people wanted to get a picture with their favourite bunny and almost every child there was clutching a Bing toy. We were quite far back in the queue and the lady told us that she wasn’t sure if we’d make it but we did! It was so lovely to have a picture to remember the day and Emma definitely recognised her favourite TV character in the flesh. It’s so lovely to see her making those connections and feeling excited about it. A wonderful day doing something really different, I don’t think it’s the last we’ll see of Drusillas Park!