Will is a professional youth worker and outdoorsman at heart. He is particularly passionate about the formative role that adventurous experiences and natural environments hold for young people.

His recent professional experience has come through the management of projects and services designed to support young people and vulnerable adults within some of Norfolk’s larger charities. The team at Horstead believes that all young people, no matter their circumstance, should have access to positive experiences with their peers in the outdoors. He said, “We have unique resource here at Horstead and a passionate, caring and experienced staff team who can adapt our offer to suit the needs and aspirations of all of our visitors. As the most recent custodian of this role and this beautiful centre I’m really excited to continue developing our offer and our efforts to live up to our Charitable Mission of “ providing the best opportunities for the educational, personal, spiritual and social development of young people.’”

The team at Horstead plans to make the centre as accessible as possible to as many young people as they safely and responsibly can in 2021.

Will’s appointment as centre manager follows the departure of Josie Barnett, whose stewardship, love and support for the Horstead’s staff and customers has seen the centre grow in every way over the last ten years. The team wishes her well in her next adventures.

Following the National Lockdown the Horstead Centre must currently consider itself closed for visiting groups. In addition to this, recent guidance from the Department for Education is that schools should avoid residential trips away and as such it looks like they will not be able to host residential experiences for schools at the Centre until Easter 2021. The centre recognises the reasons for this and are keen to keep our Centre, staff and visitors as safe as can be.

Will said, “The good news is that we are confident that, when we emerge from national lockdown we will be able to offer some level of experience to visiting groups, through Activity Days or one off sessions.  We are working hard to make sure that our COVID Secure Plan is up to date and is aligned with the Government’s guidance, good practice and the advice of our activity National Governing Bodies. We will work with any prospective group to ensure that their visit to Horstead is safe, enjoyable and memorable. Winter is a particularly special time here at Horstead; the mist in the fields, marshmallows round the fire and the tranquil river are all to be enjoyed and we’re really looking forward to introducing both our regular visitors and new groups also to the Centre at this lovely time of year.”

Keep an eye on The Horstead Centre’s website and like The Horstead Centre Facebook Page for winter updates, offers, photographs and an planned series of videoed activities, challenges and games to play in the outdoors with children.

Contact the Centre Manager, Will Mills, to explore the options available and discuss what would be best suited for your group Activity Day william.mills@horsteadcentre.org.uk