An update about Blackland Farm

16 April 2024

We have an important announcement to make about Blackland Farm, one of Girlguiding’s activity centres which closed on 31 December 2023.  

We are very pleased to confirm that Blackland Farm will open soon under new ownership – an adventure operator led by a local group with well-established links to both Blackland Farm and the area.  

The new adventure operator will run Blackland Farm as an outdoor activity centre, with camping, indoor accommodation and adventurous activities like canoeing, climbing and abseiling. It will be open to Girlguiding and Scout groups, schools, youth groups and more. 

Girlguiding’s trustees used a set of principles for the sale, including continued use for adventure. We are very glad that the spirit and experience of adventure that has existed at Blackland Farm for many years will live on, and the centre will continue to benefit girls and Girlguiding. 

When we made the announcement about the activity centres in 2023, we promised to continue working to make sure more girls can always access adventures in their units and near where they live. The funds from the sale of the activity centres will be placed in a designated fund which will include further investment in our adventure offer as well as for the future of Girlguiding. This year we are giving £400,000 to our countries and regions teams to support tens of thousands of girls in the UK having adventures.  

Adventure is everywhere in Girlguiding. Last year, 61% of girls took part in an adventurous activity and 40% stayed away from home. We want to help make sure even more girls experience adventures big and small: 

  • We are working with our countries and regions teams to maximise adventure for all girls and together we are reaching tens of thousands of girls this year who may not have had the opportunity to go on an adventure.  
  • There’ll be new training and resources to support leaders to provide more opportunities for girls.  
  • And alongside our adventure finder, we recently launched our adventure map with all the different places you can find adventures through Girlguiding.   

Catherine Irwin, Girlguiding’s chair of the board of trustees, said: ‘Girlguiding has a long-term commitment to making sure all girls can access adventure. I’m delighted Blackland Farm will be operated by owners who are local and who know both the site and the area. We cannot afford to own and operate activity centres ourselves and we are very glad that Blackland Farm under local ownership will carry on being used for adventure by young people.’