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Shopping with dinosaurs

Shopping with kids is a Jurassic pain in the bum. But we discovered that A 8m high T Rex and a hunt for her pre-historic pals was a roarsome hit for us all.

Shopping with kids during the summer holidays can be a Jurassic pain in the bum. They have the attention span of a Stegasaurus (not the brightest of dinos) and you end up losing patience and roaring like a T Rex trying to get through the to-do list. It’s a jungle out there and don’t we know it.

Fortunately, dinosaurs are always a winner with my 5-year-old and we managed to hunt some down in the Berkshire ‘hood and buy the last few holiday essentials without everyone losing the plot. Where is this mecca of happiness? Er, Bracknell.

I’m always slightly puzzled as to why kids are always so crazy about these pre-historic lizards, but hey ho, they can get their fix at The Lexicon Bracknell as its dedicating August to T-Rex, Triceratopses and the like.


Dinos have been hidden around the town centre, there are special screenings of all four Jurassic Park films, plus an 8m tall, 18m long animatronic T Rex, tethered to H&M… and she’s not very happy about it.

So on a mission to finish our holiday shopping we hit The Lexicon’s Dinosaur Hunt and timed how long it would take for my mini Mudlet to be begging to go home. The great thing about the trail, if you’re new to The Lexicon Bracknell, is that it gives your the opportunity to find your bearings.

blonde 5 year oldboy drinking apple juice dino hunt The Lexicon Bracknell

The dinosaurs are lurking in shop windows, giving you the chance to dash in and browse or pick up what you need as you make your way round. But watch out! Lexisaurus is on the loose. Ok, so it has a keeper, but seriously not much use if this baby dinosaur makes a run for it. Keep your eyes peeled around Princess Square, Union Square and The Avenue.


There’s also Dino School with lessons featuring demonstrations of dino sounds, movements and mannerisms, as well as the chance to find out all about the fascinating lifestyle and eating habits of dinosaurs, Lexisaurus Rex the town centre’s very own baby dinosaur, Dino Tales interactive storytelling bringing best-selling children’s book, The Dinosaur that Pooped the Planet, to life; face painting and more.

Baby dinosaur Lexisaurus The Lexicon Bracknell

What a babe? Spot the baby dinosaur prowling round The Lexicon Bracknell.

What got my little man excited? The roarsome T Rex with its thrashing tail, obvs. But the lure of a Brontasaurus Burger in Bill’s caused much excitement. Just to be clear it was a regular beef burger – and, just for fun, Dino menus are available at Nandos, Bill’s, TG Fridays (Bucket of T Rex Bones, anyone?) and The Bull (kids eat FREE). Decorate a chocolate dino egg (£10 charge) at Carluccio’s or nibble on choccy fossil from Hotel Chocolat.

Basically, if you’ve got younger kids, they’ll love it. If you’re shopping for uniform, holidays or just needing to get a fashion fix, you’ll love it. Granted it’s a harder sell for older kids, but bung them a few quid and pack them off to Cineworld.

The Lexicon Bracknell T Rex Encounter Still life of holiday buys on beach

Pre-historic pain free shopping: Gold earrings, M&S; Dinosaur book, WHSmith; This Is Going To Hurt by Adam Kay, Waterstones; Ambre Solaire spray sunlotion, Boots.

Good for: entertaining younger kids – especially if you need to get some shopping down. Also handy for a stress free lunch. Dull but essential, it’s super-easy to park and get around.

Not good for: older kids will not be digging the dino hunt, but wIll appreciate the food, cinema and spanking cash in the sales.

The Lexicon Bracknell‘s T Rex Encounter runs until Mon 26 Aug.

Find more ideas here

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