A Visit To Funky Warehouse
As soon as I heard about the plans for the brand new Funky Warehouse in Cheltenham I couldn’t wait to pop along to take look. It's the first centre of its kind in the area, with trampolines, bouldering, ninja warrior and parkour in one huge arena, with users having the freedom to move from one activity to another whenever they wish.
In addition to the activities there’s also large soft play frame, making Funky Warehouse a great destination for families with kids of all ages. In fact, the unique ability to entertain 2 year olds and 16 year olds under one roof was part of the inspiration behind the idea.
When you walk in to the main arena it’s hard not to feel energised. The music adds a party-feel to sessions and there’s a real electric atmosphere in the air. The activities are well-staffed for safety reasons and I spotted 2 members of staff overseeing the soft play too.
There’s a great selection of food on sale. Create your own pizzas start at £3 for 9”, hot dogs are £3, and loaded nachos are £4. Kids’ lunch boxes are £3.50 and gluten free options are available for adults and kids. There are no fryers in the kitchen and (almost) zero chocolate on sale.
Drinks-wise, the coffees are reasonably-priced and the Polar Krush starts at £2 (which you might need after 60 minutes of bouldering).
How does it work?
Activities and equipment are suitable for ages 5 and up (with the exception of parkour which is 7+). Sessions run hourly and customers are encouraged to arrive 10 minutes early to ensure they get a full hour on the equipment.
For safety reasons specialist socks are essential and these are available from reception for £1 (which is cost price). Lockers for shoes, phones, keys etc. are available free of charge.
The soft play is for children 5 and under and, as well as a large 3-storey frame with slides, there is also a 2-and-under section for really little ones. (Socks are required on the soft play but these can be the child’s own).
Specialist sessions take place in the evening, with a teenage disco from 7 til 9 (including laser lighting) and adult sessions from 9 til 11.
Use of the activities starts at £5.95 for a session, soft play starts at £2.95 a session. Accompanying adults are free.
There’s lots of exciting things planned for the future, with mother and toddler sessions, sibling sessions, trampoline classes and bouldering and parkour lessons expected from autumn.
Last night I met with Helen Fletcher, general manager, who said that they have had over 2000 people through the doors since they began a ‘soft launch’ on 18th July. The official opening of all the activities and soft play was Saturday 30th July and the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive.
Funky Warehouse is as real labour of love for the owners who have combined their interest in fitness and health (Steve and Caroline run Trojan Fit) with their professional expertise in building sport equipment such as boxing rings (James runs Inta Construction), to create something that has addressed a real need for Cheltenham.
Walking around the arena you can see the result of lots of hard work, from people who really know their stuff. From the quality of the trampolines right down to the baby changing facilities, you can tell the management team know fitness, fun and perhaps most-importantly, family-life, inside out.