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Fairthorne Manor

For over 50 years, YMCA Fairthorne Manor school and group trips have provided opportunities for children and young people to learn in a safe and rewarding environment.

We use a wide variety of activity programmes to help develop life skills, stimulate learning and improve confidence.  Every year, we welcome, encourage and help develop over 12,000 children and young people at our beautiful 111 acre park and woodland site bordered by the River Hamble in Hampshire.


We are open year round and have some limited availability for spring and summer 2017 for camping and indoor accommodation, so call us now  on 01489 785228 to check availability for your preferred dates.

Keep up to date with our latest news by following us on our social spaces:

Our video shows just part of the experience we offer to school and group trips.

         Radio Solent interview

Alternatively listen above to our Centre Manager, talking to Katie Martin from Radio Solent about the learning experience that outdoor activities offer and the value of school trips.  Don’t just take our word for it, you’ll also hear from North Heath Primary School’s leaders and pupils as they take on our abseiling wall!

Why you should choose Fairthorne Manor for your trip

  • course flexibility – visit for the day or stay residentially
  • our staff – fully qualified, welcoming, approachable, versatile
  • activities – wide range of options to develop team building, problem solving, decision making and personal challenge
  • inclusion – our site, activities and facilities are suitable for children and young people with additional needs
  • single site – all facilities and activities located on a single site
  • accommodation – two comfortable blocks and camping options in YMCA tents
  • catering – healthy and nutritious full board service, catering for all dietary needs
  • value for money – opportunities at affordable prices
  • year round service – we do not close over the winter

Our Fairthorne school and group trip experience means we understand the amount of organisation required on your part, so we are here to assist you in planning your visit.

We are located 3 miles from junctions 7, 8 or 9 on the M27, close to the village of Botley and midway between Southampton and Portsmouth.  Our full address is YMCA Fairthorne Manor, Curdridge, Southampton, Hampshire SO30 2GH.

For all enquiries, call us on 01489 785228 or

Our nearest train station is Botley.

Google Map

Our team of dedicated staff are our greatest resource:

  • friendly, flexible and approachable
  • CRB checked to the enhanced level
  • First Aid trained (appointed person)
  • trained in child protection
  • trained in child and youth engagement skills
  • trained in child behaviour management

We have a core of permanent, high quality delivery staff for our school and group trips which is enhanced each year with the addition of enthusiastic overseas and UK volunteers and apprentices.

YMCA Fairthorne Manor is a Hampshire County Council approved outdoor activity centre with the following accreditation:

  • Adventurous Activities Licensing Authority (AALA)water-sports, including bell boating, raft building, kayaking, open canoeing and sailing.  Licence details can be confirmed by calling The Licensing Service on 029 2075 5715.
  • Royal Yachting Association (RYA)recognised as a training centre  to provide instruction for dinghy and powerboat courses
  • Our instructors are in-house trained for various activities and externally assessed by the relevant bodies. e.g by British Canoe Union assessors to deliver kayaking, canoeing and bell boating.


With over 60 years’ expertise at running adventure programmes for children, our staff are experienced at providing support and assistance for children and young people with additional needs.  The vast majority of our activities can be adapted to provide opportunities and experiences for those children with additional needs as outlined on our support page.

“From enquiring about the booking on the phone to leaving the site on the day we experienced fantastic service. Your staff are friendly, helpful and professional. We were are large group of varying ages and abilities and from the outset your staff were encouraging, reassuring and well organised. ” Roundhouse

“Link person and activities were great, regardless of the poor weather, the children had a lovely week” – Marshfield Primary

“Our link person has been outstanding, we have been coming for 11 years and he’s the best we have ever had.  He has put his heart and soul into it and quickly knew the names of our 45 children.  He has great authority and behaviour management with our group” – St James Primary

“Several instructors showed an awareness of the purpose to the activities and they explained the tasks well, encouraged the children to set themselves personal challenges.  They also reviewed the session at the end.  We felt these were most useful, allowing the children to get more from each activity” – Bishops Waltham Junior School

“The YMCA team all worked very hard to support our group – helpful and dedicated – nothing too much trouble” – Simon Says

“Instructors were engaging, witty, friendly, patient and caring.  They were all fantastic with our children, particularly the level of care shown to our statemented child, nothing was too much trouble, and on occasions, different instructors pulled together to ensure that child achieved everything possible.  Their patience was unwavering and their willingness to help that child went above and beyond.  It was a perfect week.”  Wellstead School

The booking process is simple and we are available to help you every step of the way:

  • Contact us to discuss your trip requirements and we can suggest the best type of visit for your group.  Our price page outlines costs for all types of visits, from day trips to weekend or week-long residentials.  For further information on specific types of visit, visit our residential and day visit pages.
  • We can check if your preferred visit dates are available, discuss the options and arrange a visit to our site if required.  Let us know if you require any help with your parents evening!
  • Make a provisional booking, which we can hold for 14 days without charge.
  • Gather levels of interest from your potential group.
  • Complete a booking form and return with a deposit – we can invoice for deposits if required.
  • We’ll work out and send you your activity programme with further information to ensure your stay is successful.
  • We’ll ask you for your final numbers 8 weeks prior to the visit and expect you to settle the balance 4 weeks before arrival.

***Download our new Fairthorne Manor brochure!***