SummerScape 2017

Monday 21st – Friday 25th August 2017


Join us for a fun week of Exploration along one of the most stunning coastlines in the country – the Isle of Purbeck in Dorset. This Jurrasic coast boasts beautiful scenery and the chance to do exciting activities such as coasteering, rock climbing and boating as well as more gentle activities like treasure hunts, beach games and bbq’s. Open to those in Yr 4 – to Yr 8

*Due to rooming restrictions there is now only one space left for a female participant*

Book a place here!


Our group of Escapees will meet in London on Monday morning and travel down to Poole Harbour by train. From there we will catch a ferry which takes us out past Brownsea island and along the coast of Studland and the famous Old Harry’s Rocks (pictured above) to the town of Swanage. From there we can walk to our accommodation at Swanage YHA, spend some time on the beach and shop and cook for dinner.

More about Swanage

Tuesday Morning

After a hearty breakfast at the YHA we will head to Swanage station and board the steam train which will take us through the heart of Purbeck to the impressive Corfe castle which sits in a commanding position at the top of a hill. We can then spend the morning exploring the castle and learning about the invaders it has repelled over the years.

More about Corfe Castle

Tuesday Afternoon

Just a short walk from the castle lies Dorset water park (pictured) where we will have a relaxed lunch before heading on to the water to take on the inflatable obstacle courses “Total Wipeout” – style in their two lakes until everyone is properly worn out. Once changed we we catch the steam train back in time to shop and prepare for dinner.

More about Dorset Water Park

Wednesday Morning

On the next headland round from Swanage is Durlston Country Park (pictured) which was formally a limestone mine. It is an ideal place for a Smuggler Treasure hunt and somewhere the group can be challenged to navigate around the lighthouse, the castle and the various monuments. It is also a great place for a picnic with views across to the Isle of Wight and vintage and modern sailing boats gliding past the cliffs.

Durlston Country Park

Wednesday Afternoon

On Wednesday we will have a chance to enjoy Swanage beach have a go at crabbing, play in the rock pools and go for a swim at the beautiful sandy beach. In the evening we will have a BBQ on the beach and play beach games.

Thursday Morning

On Thursday morning we will catch a bus to the nearby village of Langton Matravers, meet our instructors and walk down to Dancing ledge, a great spot on the rocky coast where we can spend the morning climbing. This session will be led by our partners at Cumulus Outdoors who are a local AALA licensed outdoor company whom we have often used in the past.

More about Cumulus

Thursday Afternoon

After lunch on Thursday we will kit up in wetsuits, buoyancy aids and helmets for an afternoon of adrenaline based Coasteering with Cumulus – basically jumping in the sea from rocks and exploring the sea caves. This activity is often rated as one of the most fun things we do!



After breakfast we will have time for some last minute souvenir shopping before heading for home. In a reverse of our  journey out, we will board the boat at Swanage to Poole then get the train back to London for a pick up late afternoon

Boat trip to Poole

Living Arrangments

We will be staying at the YHA in Swanage this large, sea facing, Victorian villa is situated five minutes’ walking distance from the award-winning beach of Swanage – the only Blue Flag beach along the entire Dorset Jurassic Coast.

All rooms allocated to us are for our sole occupancy of during our visit. During our stay we will be self  catering giving the group valuable life skills in planning, preparing and serving their own meals with guidance from Esoc Staff.

Swanage YHA

Activities and Leadership

All activities will be led by qualified instructors with appropriate levels of training and supervision and we will have conducted full risk assessments for every aspect of the trip. Safety is our main concern when running our trips and we will do everything we can to ensure the group have an exciting experience but are well looked after throughout. A certain level of risk is inherent to all of these activities but we believe the enormous benefits far outweigh them. All of the ESOC leaders are first aid trained and DBS checked.


SummerScape 2017 will cost £495 pp to include:

  • Return travel from London
  • Full board accommodation in Swanage YHA
  • Boat and Stream train tickets
  • Entry to Corfe Castle and Dorset Waterpark
  • Coasteering and Rock Climbing activities
  • Planning and leadership (approx 1:6 ratio)

The price doesn’t include:

  • Lunch on Day 1
  • Personal Kit
  • Pocket money for ice cream, souvenirs etc
  • Travel from Cambridge (although we will provide a chaperone for a Cambridge group on the train)

A non-refundable deposit of £100 will be taken at time of booking. The balance of £395 will be invoiced in June.

Those booking a sibling will receive a 5% discount on the cost of that child. A third child will receive a 10% discount.

This trip is open to those in Yr 4 to Yr 8

Book a place here!


Why don’t you allow personal mobile phones or iPods/MP3 players on the trip?

There are a few reasons for this rule: a) these items are often expensive, and very easily lost or damaged; b) in the rare case that there are any problems to deal with on the trip, the Leader team are in the best position to sort things out, as they’re aware of all the factors surrounding the situation; calls to home can often make things worse! And c) our trips are a brilliant chance to get away from screens, televisions, Facebook, Instagram filters, and instead spend time outdoors interacting with friends in a non-virtual way!

In the case of an emergency, you will be able to contact your child via the Instructors’ phones (details listed above), and vice versa. If someone is really homesick and we think a quick call will help them settle, then of course we’ll let them do that.

We’ll post updates and (where signal allows) pictures on our blog. We aim to do this on at least the first night and the third night but please try and assume that no news is good news! Sometimes we are so busy running the expedition and looking after the group that we don’t have time to organise blog posts too. Once we get back we’ll post a full de-brief with lots of photographs.

This is my child’s first trip away from home, will they be alright?

Of course everyone reacts differently, but in the vast majority of cases there will be absolutely no problems – they’ll be too busy having fun! The Leaders on the trip all have lots of experience of being with children when they’re away from home. In fact, we often find that the parents are the ones who find it hardest, and the children have a brilliant time and don’t give it a second’s thought.

My child is a fussy eater, will they go hungry?

No one has ever starved on an ESOC Expedition. The children are involved in planning and cooking the meals every day, and this engagement really helps eliminate food fussiness. They’ll be encouraged to Try New Things, as stated in our Ethos, but won’t be force fed anything they find disgusting! They’ll pick up loads of new skills, and may even cook a banquet for you once they’re home. We’ve taken note of any dietary requirements you filled out on the registration form.

Are your Leaders DBS and First Aid trained?

Our Leaders are DBS checked and have First Aid training. Many of our Leaders also have more advanced medical wilderness training. In a medical emergency we will be able to use our vehicle to get to the nearest hospital A&E department. We pride ourselves on employing enthusiastic, knowledgeable, and engaging staff, who go above and beyond to make our trips memorable.

Does my child really need a waterproof jacket AND over trousers?

Yes, they really do. You don’t have to spend a lot of money on them, but they need a waterproof top layer to put on over their clothes: sogginess is a fast route to unhappiness.

Where can I go if I need to buy any clothing or equipment?

You can get a 15% discount at Cotswold Outdoor, either online or in the shops by using the code AF-EXSOCM-4U. Let us know if you need any advice.

Do I really have to label everything with my child’s name?

Yes please! Unsurprisingly, more than one person buys a head torch from Cotswold Outdoor, or a black waterproof, or a pair of wellies, and these things are often left lying about… The kit pile we’re left with at the end of the trip is much easier to sort out if you’ve named everything.

Book a place here!