When a baby is tiny they learn so quickly. They learn to smile, to roll over, to sit up, to crawl and before long they are standing up and running around all over the place. Children grow so quickly and before long they are wanting to learn new things, get that bit bigger and to experience everything that life has to offer.
I have realised recently, though, that there is one huge milestone in a child’s life. One that is often overlooked and not spoken about very much. The milestone of reaching 90cm.
As a parent of young children this 90cm mark was a long time coming for LP, who is very petite and it felt like her and her brother reached 90cm at the same time. Friends of theirs though were 90cm before they were two – and others are five and not yet 90cm.
But why is 90cm so important? Well, you see, 90cm is where childhood adventures really begin.
Most UK theme parks, and even fun fairs have height restrictions for rides. The lowest of these restrictions is typically 90cm – with any child shorter than this usually getting into the park for free and not being able to experience much at all. However there are some exceptions to this.
At Legoland and Chessington children are free until they are three regardless of height – so you could pay for your three year old to visit but find that they’re under 90cm and so can’t go on everything they would like to. On the other end of the scale, Peppa Pig World at Paulton’s Park is aimed solely at young children and so lets children under 1 metre in completely free! Again, this isn’t great if you have a young child that’s tall for their age.
But most places seem to have 90cm as their magic number. The world of Legoland is so much more exciting when you get to 90cm. Dreamland in Margate is pretty uneventful if you’re under 90cm – as are most of the big theme parks in the country.
Having visited Paulton’s Park, Dreamland, Legoland, Alton Towers and Drayton Manor over the last year or so, as the children have been both under and over that 90cm mark, I know that everything has got just so much more exciting since they have been over 90cm. Yes, in most cases it now costs us more to go to theme parks but it’s such a better value day out – and the children just love it so much more.
90cm for me is where children start to grow up. It’s where they start to be properly brave, where they get more independence and where they can just do so much more. For us, the children reaching 90cm was a bittersweet time – a time where we could go on more days out with them and have such a great time as a family but a time where our little children just weren’t that little any more.
90cm. The time when children can start going on theme park rides – and the time where children really start to grow up.