Summer 2018 Newsletter

Hello Everyone

Welcome to the Summer 2018 Newsletter.

We hope you are all having a very fun filled summer holiday. We have lots going on at the centre: camping groups, activity weeks and weekends and self catering groups too.

There is lots for you to do in South Tyneside too: See the attached link for more details on what’s available:   Summer Holiday Sports Programme

We would be grateful if you could take a few minutes to complete a short confidential survey about physical activity participation. Click here to access the survey: Physical Activity Survey

We are pleased to announce that after a recent inspection by Visit England we have retained our 3* Rating. We received a very positive report which reflects the hard work put in by all the staff. If you would like to book Thurston OEC as a self catering facility please do get in touch.

Well done to Administrative Assistant Cheryl on completing and passing Level 1 Awards in Mental Health Awareness and Stress Awareness.

Enjoy your sunny summer and we look forward to sharing more news with you next term. In the meantime we shall share with you this lovely picture taken this week by East Boldon Scout Group. Blue skies and a very blue Coniston Water.

May/June Newsletter

Hello and welcome to the May/June 2018 Newsletter.

May/June Newsletter PDF download.

We’ve all been enjoying the recent spell of sunny weather here in the Lake District.

Data Protection Statement

We collect personal data on Consent Forms prior to all courses.

Why we collect it? Thurston OEC collects the information on Consent Forms to ensure the safety and wellbeing of course participants.

Who we might share it with. We will not share the information with anyone – except medical professionals in the event of a need for treatment.

What we do with the information. The information will be securely stored at the centre during the course and afterwards will be scanned and stored on the South Tyneside Council secure servers. The information is used to help in the planning and provision of appropriate activities and locations, and for safety management.

How long we keep it. Information provided on this form will be kept for the time required by the Limitation Act 1990. (I.e. 7 years for adults, until a young person reaches the age of 25, or for 99 years in the case of Looked After Children.) The original paper copies will be destroyed at the end of the course.

How people can access their personal information. If you wish to access the personal information that we hold you should contact South Tyneside Council Information Governance, Telephone: 0191 424 6539

We have updated our consent forms with our Data Protection statement and would be grateful if groups could now use these forms. They can be downloaded from the Residential section on the resources menu on our website.


Well done to Josh and Holly on passing their Safety Boat Course.

Well done to Cheryl on passing her Trail & Fell Leadership in Running Course.


to the Friends of Thurston group for another fun and successful ‘work weekend’. We appreciate all the hard work you put in to helping Thurston thrive and develop.

April 2018 Newsletter

Welcome to the April 2018 edition of the Thurston Newsletter.

We hope you all had an enjoyable Easter break. The sun managed to shine some of the time and we managed to get out and enjoy it.

Staff news.

Staff training – SPA Skills.

Congratulations are in order for our trainees. Josh gained his British Canoeing 2 Star and Holly gained her British Canoeing 4 Star (White Water Kayak Leader). Well done to both of them!

Around the centre.

The new ramp is now officially finished and open for use and looking very good.

Vacancy at Thurston




£28,221 pa pro rata

By being part of the outdoor education team, you will make a significant difference to the lives of children, young people and adults in South Tyneside so that they can compete favourably with their peers locally and nationally.

You will be expected to work flexibly to meet the needs of the service. This will on occasions include working on an evening, weekend and on a residential basis. As this is a job share the typical work pattern will be working alternate weeks, or, two weeks on, two weeks off.

Shortlisting will take place week commencing 4 June 2018.

Interviews will take place 3 July 2018 at Thurston Outdoor Education Centre.

South Tyneside Council is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children, young people and vulnerable adults. We expect all staff and volunteers to share this commitment and an Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) disclosure will be sought along with other relevant pre-employment checks.

To find out more about this role and to apply please visit alternatively you can email or call (0191) 455 4968. BT Typetalkers welcome.

Closing date: Noon, 31 May 2018.



March 2018 Newsletter

Welcome to the March 2018 Thurston OEC Newsletter.

March 2018 Newsletter pdf download

Wishing you all an adventurous and fun filled Easter Break.


Lighter Nights Campaign

Climb and BBQ    Thursday 29th March, 5:30-9:30pm

This will take place at Simonside Climbing Wall, South Shields, NE34 9SD (

Children from the age of 5, young people and families are welcome.

Should you have any queries please contact Martin Simpson at: or by telephoning: 0191 424 0118.

5-a-side Football Tournament    Friday 6th April, 6-9pm

This will take place on the outdoor 3G pitch at Clegwell Community Association, Mountbatten Avenue, Hebburn, NE31 2QT.

5-a-side Football Tournament     Friday 13th April, 6-9pm

This will take place on the outdoor 3G pitch at Temple Park Leisure Centre, John Reid Road, South Shields, NE34 8QN.

To enter a team (11-13, 14-15 and 16-17 age groups) please contact Chris Thompson at: or by telephoning: 0191 424 7845.



We have passed our AHOEC Gold Standard and LOtC Quality Badge with “flying colours”.

These awards assure our clients of both the safety and quality of outdoor experience we provide here at Thurston.

February Newsletter

Welcome to the Thurston OEC February 2018 Newsletter.

February Newsletter pdf download.

Farewell and Hello

This month we said goodbye to our Centre Assistant / Trainee Instructor, Coralie. During the past 12 months Coralie has been working alongside the instructional team gaining experience and skills in the outdoors and passing a number of National Governing Body awards. Coralie is continuing her outdoor career and we all wish her the very best for the future.

So we now say hello to Holly our new Centre Assistant / Trainee Instructor. We look forward to helping Holly progress in her career path.


50 years of Thurston.

Unfortunately due to a date clash we will no longer be holding our celebration day on the 24th March. We hope to hold our 50th Party later on in the year. Stay tuned….


Back in December the Thurston staff team attended their Food Safety Course. We are pleased to announce all staff passed the course (so we can carry on making Thurston Flapjack)!

Youth Challenge Weekend

We recently held the South Tyneside Council Youth Challenge Weekend. A number of youth projects attended, taking part in adventurous challenges and activities.

A fun weekend was had by all and at the end of the two days Clegwell Girls were the winners – Congratulations and well done to all who participated.

Clegwell Girls


January Newsletter

Welcome to the January 2018 Thurston OEC Newsletter.

January 2018 Newsletter pdf download

Welcome to the January 2018 Newsletter. We wish you all a very happy New Year!.

Training News

During January we have been making the most of the winter weather by updating, refreshing and sharing our skills and knowledge.

Staff from our sister centre over in South Tyneside, Simonside OA, came to stay with us for a few days. We packed plenty in: advanced First Aid techniques, winter skills on Helvellyn and an evening paddle on the lake on the giant SUP’s.

Then it was up to Scotland for some Winter Mountaineering for some of the Thurston team, followed by a weekend of paddling on the North Tyne and Eden.


Well done to Centre Assistant / Trainee Instructor Josh on passing his Mountain Leader Award (summer). The ML is a big tick for any aspiring Instructor and we are proud of both of our Trainees for gaining the award during their time with us.

Friends of Thurston News

A big THANK YOU to the Friends group for our new Cooker and Fridge. These fantastic additions to our camping barn were made possible by the efforts of the Friends group in securing a successful award from the CAF Fund.

Tickets are now on sale for the Friends of Thurston fundraiser on the 10th March 2018. Please see the Friends of Thurston facebook page or the Friends of Thurston category in our News feed for more details.

50 years of Thurston.

To celebrate 50 years of Thurston OEC we will be holding an Open Day on the 24th March 2018. An opportunity to help us look back on 50 years of providing Outdoor Education:

  • Refreshments
  • Outdoor Activity Taster Sessions
  • Guided Tours of the Centre and Grounds

More details to follow……..

Don’t forget to keep in touch. Find us @ThurstonOEC on facebook and twitter

October Newsletter

October Newsletter pdf download

Welcome to the October 2017 Thurston OEC Newsletter.

We hope you are all enjoying a fun packed Half Term Holiday.

We’ve had a busy start to the Autumn with lots of courses: school residential, self catering bookings and DofE groups on the campsite to name a few.

Of course this being the Lake District in Autumn we’ve experienced our share of rain, sometimes lots of rain! However this hasn’t dampened the enthusiasm of our groups and the upside is the lakes and rivers are nice and full and our Hydro Plant has been producing lots of energy.

Staff News

During the half term holiday we took the opportunity to take out one of our giant SUPs (Stand Up Paddleboard) for a journey along the estuary. Not only did we get to try out the capability of the SUP on moving water but it was also a fun training exercise with 7 members of staff taking part.

South Tyneside Council 2017 Darker Nights Campaign

FREE open-access activities that children, young people and families can get involved in as part of this year’s campaign.

5 a side Football Tournament on Friday 27th October 2017. 6pm – 9pm 

This will take place on the outdoor 3G pitch at Clegwell Community Association, Mountbatten Avenue, Hebburn, NE31 2QT.

5 a side Football Tournament on Friday 3rd November 2017. 6pm – 9pm 

This will take place on the outdoor 3G pitch at Temple Park Leisure Centre, John Reid Road, South Shields, NE34 8QN

To enter a team (11-14 and 15-19 age groups) please contact Chris Thompson at: or by telephoning: 0191 424 7845.

Coaching Matters Event. Hosted by Thurston OEC.

On Friday the 1st December 2017 we will be hosting the Coaching Matters event. All paddlesport coaches, regardless of qualification or experience, are invited to this Cumbria Coaching Matters event. This forum aims to provide an excellent opportunity to: • Participate in workshops to develop awareness and skills in coaching and safety; • Meet the CPD element of the BC Coach Update Scheme (3-year validity); • Initiate or extend cross-discipline learning; • Network, share ideas and meet other coaches;

Price: £50pp (+ £10 for the optional Safeguarding module)

More details can be found by following the link below:

Keep in Touch

Don’t forget you can keep in touch by following us on Twitter and Facebook @ThurstonOEC.

Warm regards,

The Thurston Team.

September Newsletter

Thurston OEC Newsletter pdf download

Welcome to the September 2017 Thurston OEC Newsletter

We look forward to welcoming lots of new faces to the centre as we start the new academic year.

Staying at Thurston OEC

We are continuing to offer a number of ways to experience the centre; Residential and Self Catered in the main house or staying on our Campsite or in our Camping Barn. We can take bookings up to 24 months in advance. Call or email the centre for more information.

Simonside Outdoor Adventure

Don’t forget to take a look at our sister centre, Simonside Outdoor Adventure, over in South Shields for more ways to take part in adventurous activities. Visit their website at Simonside Outdoor Adventure

Best Start in Life Campaign

As part of South Tyneside Council we are working to give the children of South Tyneside the best start in life. For advice on staying healthy, things to do, as well as support and services available to children and families go to The Best Start in Life Campaign



Staff News

During the summer our trainee instructors, Coralie and Josh, have continued to work towards gaining National Governing Body Awards, gaining skills and experience in climbing, mountain leadership and paddlesports.

Senior Instructor Jen, along with Coralie and Josh recently attended the IOL North West Practitioners Gathering where they took part in a variety of workshops and activities. They look forward to sharing the skills they learnt with the rest of the Thurston team.