A place for free range humans

OUR MISSION: We believe that getting outdoors is vital to every aspect of our health and wellbeing, and crucial to our understanding of the world around us. We want to help local young people (and their families) to have more opportunities to discover, explore and enjoy the outdoors.

Bring your group to visit Birkheads Wild and go free range for a little while.

We are a perfect spot to come for a day or a couple of hours, or to try (almost) wild, off-grid camping for the first time - small, close to home and with hands-on support to enable your group to have a memorable night under canvas.

Acorn Guy

Bring your
Youth Group

Youth Groups

We'll design day sessions or overnight camps to suit the needs of your group.
Find out more

bushcraft robin Gateshead

Duke of Edinburgh's Award

Duke of Edinburgh Award

Our site is an ideal base for Bronze level expeditions.

We'll help you plan an unforgettable and successful adventure.
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Are you new to the outdoors?

New to the outdoors?

Never been camping before? We'll support and advise you to ensure your group is prepared and knows what to expect.
Find out more

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Guided Walks

Guided Walks

We can adapt our walks to suit all abilities and ages - including fully accessible routes.
Find out more.

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Bushcraft Sessions

From 2 hour ' taster' sessions to full days 'in the wild', we'll provide an unforgettable outdoor experience.
Find out more

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Come Camping

Come Camping Here

We can host 28 overnight camps here per year.
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Hire Our Yurt

Hire Our Yurt

Exclusive use of our very own yurt - The Barrow Den - for your family or team away day
Find out more

Book a session

We run regular After School Clubs and holiday sessions for local young people. We also run events and camps for families, and even some sessions just for free-range grown ups! All current available sessions are shown below. Select a session to join our tribe

As a social enterprise

We exist to help more young people to discover, explore and enjoy being outdoors.

Birkheads Wild is a Community Interest Company (CIC), this means any surplus we make is reinvested to help more young people experience (almost) wild camping and the outdoors.

Check out this video of what we achieved on our Gift of the Wild programme in 2018/19 in collaboration with Stomping Grounds Forest School.

What our visitors say...

"Jack has talked of nothing else since he got home, thanks to all the grown ups for an unforgettable adventure today!"

Joanne O'Leary (Jack's Mum)

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“I have had fantastic feedback from all of the families who were lucky enough to be nominated for 'Gift of the Wild' programme.  Parents were anxious about six week holiday activities and the associated costs.  Several children were reluctant to engage in out of schools activities.  These children have talked about the friendships formed during the day and the amazing array of activities they took part it.  Thank you so much". 

Family Support Worker, Gateshead

bushcraft robin Gateshead

"Great place for a DofE Bronze practice or qualifier. Walks straight from the camp site and plenty of footpaths. Fiona is so enthusiastic and helpful you couldn't be in better hands. The place is tranquil and you wouldn't realise that you are just outside the hustle and bustle of the major conurbations of the north east"

Steve Southern, Operations Officer for Newcastle, Gateshead & Hartlepool, DofE North

"Lovely atmosphere and a great place for DofE!"

Leah & Chloe, Y10

"Amazing people and amazing place"

Megan, 15

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"Cute campsite with a very welcoming feeling"

Oxclose Community Academy, Washington, Y9

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"Your site is awesome and you helped me start a fire and gave me some helpful tips that I will use again"

James, Y10

"We are now in our fourth year of running DofE Awards. Our students work really hard at getting the same national award as everyone else - and do this through volunteering, physical activities, undertaking an expedition and learning new skills. This year they're learning bushcraft skills at a great little spot - Birkheads Wild!"

Cambian Dilston College, Northumberland

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" Your camp site is beautiful and DofE is good! Thank you so much."

Cassie, (15) BCT Aspire, Bronze Duke of Edniburgh's Expedition

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"I love this place you can build dens and its lots of fun, you can also explore!!!"

Daisy (9), Kibblesworth Academy, Gateshead

"We work with young women with complex needs (eg on child protection plans due to neglect, babies and unborn babies of young women on CP plans, young women with fairly severe mental health problems including selective mutism, eating distress anxiety,  depression,  those at risk of sexual exploitation, young women who go missing, excluded from school due to behaviour, home educated, ADHD, autistic spectrum disorder, drug and alcohol use, in abusive relationships, socially isolated, bereavement or displaying early sexual behaviour). We also work with young parents, including fathers.

Working with Birkheads Wild over the past year has been a unique experience that has taken the young people out of their comfort zone and challenged them, building confidence and the ability to transfer this confidence into everyday life.

Undoubtably being at Birkheads Wild and out of their normal environment is beneficial to their mental health. It is an opportunity that they would not otherwise have had to forget their worries for a while in the beautiful countryside. They also learnt new skills and tried out new activities. I noticed our young people behaving differently in a new environment, talking about nature and linking this to positive memories. They also did more physical activity producing endorphins, which is something they may not otherwise do as part of their day.

Our young parents reported benefits to themselves and their babies in that it gave them the knowledge and confidence that they can do things in the outdoors which make them feel good that don't not cost anything, and can be done in similar environments close to their own homes, for example walking, climbing, making things from nature and having interesting, knowledgeable conversations about nature and the environment.

The overnight camp gave young people more opportunity to form relationships, both with peers and staff. It was also empowering for young parents who live at home and have not had the opportunity to be away with their children without the presence of grandparents/parents/foster carers. "

Julie Stott, Project Director, Gateshead Young Women's Outreach Project

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Facebook Posts

14 hours ago

Birkheads Wild Community Interest Company

❤ TONIGHT WE MADE SMALL STEPS TOWARDS RETURNING TO THE WILD ❤ 5 young people who would normally be here every couple of weeks got the chance to come back tonight to help Mark and I test out our COVID19 Safe procedures for working with small groups. This was the first time most have them have been here in 4 months! It was quite a moving 2 hours with re-unions, nervousness, laughter and LOADS of chat. More than anything else it was the chat that got me, sitting round the campfire at a safe distance from each other, engaged in their own activity, but chatting - comparing the annoying-ness of siblings, sharing stories of hugging Grandma for the first time, tales of school work... just like us grown ups they have really relished some time away from their own families after so long ! We asked the young people to help us think of ways to safely do the things they wanted to; how could we share a packet of marshmallows for toasting safely ? How could we play Camouflage without the high 5 s? How do we get tools out and put them away? It will take some getting used to but it will get easier. Kevin whittled a mushroom, Thomas P was so proud of the fact that his carrots from his Backyard Makeover are bigger than mine and he was in charge of fire lighting, Thomas W as ever was my helpful Assistant, Eve used a 'big knife' for the first time and SJ created the most wonderful leather jewelry with Mark and look at this poem they made up together in about 10 minutes!! Says it all really; "This is where you need to be." ❤ #forestschool #covidsafe #campfire #knifecraft #leathercraft #bushcraft #firelighting #getkidsoutside #socialenterprise #dowhatyoulove #nature @ Birkheads Wild Community Interest Company ... See MoreSee Less

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Finding faces in the fire!Our first recreation is by Year 7 pupil Thomas Welch.

Thomas is a Young Volunteer at Birkheads Wild where he regularly attends a Forest School.

After safely lightly a fire with the support and supervision from Forrest School Leader Fiona, Thomas began watching the faces in the flames and started taking some photographs.

Thomas was delighted to capture this image so similar to “The Scream" by Edvard Munch.

Thomas already has a real talent for Art with his most recent teacher describing that he has a real eye for detail and incredibly observation skills. We really hope that Thomas keeps up his interest in Art.

Well done Thomas!
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5 days ago

Birkheads Wild Community Interest Company

T struggles in a classroom setting but thrives here in alternative provision which suits his specific needs. And he grafts, really really hard alongside his learning. He started painting the pallet chair on Monday (with "help" from the hens), second coat today on all the outdoor wooden furniture, as well as writing up a job description for looking after then hens and making a graph showing the weather at Birkheads Wild which he has recorded over the last month #outdoorlearning #forestschool #alternativeprovision #socialenterprise #Gateshead @ Birkheads Wild Community Interest Company ... See MoreSee Less

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This week @ashfordguitars spent some CPD time in the woods over in the Lake District further developing his skills in teaching and instructing others on how to carve green wood with @wild_human_bushcraft . Thanks to Ben McNutt and his expertise and experience #greenwoodcarving #spooncarving #bushcraft #outdoorlearning ... See MoreSee Less

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1 week ago

Birkheads Wild Community Interest Company

A year ago today since our mini-fundraiser event Cocktails in the Wild 😭 with the fabulous @theswordmaker_bar doing the mixing. Who's up for doing this again in August or September as soon as we can get 30 people together in an outdoor space? #boutiquecocktails #cocktails #outdoorevents #socialenterprise #almostwildcamping @ Birkheads Wild Community Interest Company ... See MoreSee Less

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If you want to learn more please get in touch...

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