Butlins Skegness #ButlinsAmbassadors
Post one of three (links at the bottom to the other posts)
This weekend we headed on our Butlins Ambassadors break to Butlins Skegness. It’s over 20 years since I Iast went to Butlins and the rest of the family have never been. I have fond memories of visiting Butlins in Ayr, but that site closed down years ago. I remember taking part in shows, discos, fun fairs and swimming. I was really intrigued to see what Butlins is like now and what it was like for small children.
To try and cover everything I will break the review up across a few posts, this one will focus on check in and accommodation.
We arrived at about 1pm and as we were staying in Gold Accommodation we were able to go straight to the drive through check in to register our arrival. The first few staff we encountered during this process were brilliant, warm, friendly and helpful, making the process simple and pleasant. We received our gold wristbands which had to be worn for the duration of the stay and the lady at check in kindly advised that we could wear the bands on behalf of the children which saved us from having to try and get LissyLou (age 2) in particular to keep them on!
We had also paid to get the B-Line passes which enables you to get into shows and the pool before other visitors. This is worth it for the shows as they tend to be over subscribed and having the passes means you can get a better seat for the show. This would be especially useful if you plan on visiting a lot of shows. It also meant that you could access the pool in front of people queuing but didn’t get you in any earlier as such.
The Gold Apartment we had been allocated was on the ground floor, which was useful with small children, however it did mean we encountered some noise from above when people walked around their apartment, it didn’t really cause us much trouble and the benefits outweighed the negatives and I would say that it would be worth the additional £15 you can pay to ensure a ground floor apartment, especially if you have a pram or someone less physically able. The entrance was well lit, which is especially useful during winter months when it is practically dark morning and evening as you come and go, so this offered security and comfort when leaving.
Once inside we discovered we had been allocated a three bedroom apartment which meant that the children had the option of their own rooms. They prefer to sleep together at the moment so they didn’t bother but the twin rooms were a good size.
The apartment also consisted of a kitchen/living room, the main double bedroom, a shower room and a small store room. Size wise it was fine for 6 people. We were disappointed to find that the apartment was a bit shabby, with poorly covered up damp patches and plenty of knocks and scrapes. We also noticed that quite a few areas of the apartment hadn’t been dusted for a while.
The shower room was compact but fully functional, however the shower did take a long time to drain, luckily though it didn’t overflow, it just meant that care was needed when exiting to prevent a flooding situation! It could have done with a good limescale spray too. But it was otherwise ok with a large mirror and heated towel rail which meant we had warm fluffy towels for after our showers.
The beds reminded me of camp beds in their styling and to be honest we didn’t find them very comfortable. The children were happy though and the bedding was crisp cotton which was pleasant. I also liked that each bed had two pillows, something that many places don’t provide but offers greater comfort and options.
The kitchen was well stocked with plenty of cookware and tableware and we were impressed with the addition of a Turkey tray given the time of year. It also had a fridge and dishwasher. We were disappointed to find that the housekeeping staff felt the need to put the dishwasher on each morning for just a couple of glasses, especially when there is information everywhere about being green and saving energy etc. But I’m sure that some people would have been unhappy if they weren’t clean when they returned so it’s a tough decision over which they should do I suppose.
We felt that the 15 mins walk from our accommodation to the Skyline Pavillion was slightly further than is preferable with small children, especially as there is no shelter along the way, it would have been a miserable walk if the weather had been much colder or wet. It was then a further 5-10mins walk outside the other side of the Skyline to get to the funfair etc All this with small children meant that I carried a heavy 2yr old for quite a long way on many occasions. It’s worth taking a pushchair if your child will still use them because there is lots of walking to do.