Education & Groups

Our animals provide a fantastic opportunity for hands-on, exciting learning experiences for all ages! Based in our classroom, we offer talks to schools and other organised groups on a variety of topics and themes, each of which is filled to the brim with fun facts and awesome encounters! Each exciting session allows supervised contact with live animals and a range of artefacts and has been designed to meet National curriculum objectives in an engaging and memorable way.

‘Meet the Animals’ Sessions

Choose from the following interesting topics:

  • Hissing, hiding, hunting – what is a ‘predator’? What animals are ‘prey’? A look at how different animals find their food and escape being food themselves!
  • Adaptations – amazing survival adaptations are revealed using a variety of fascinating animals.
  • Classification – understand how to classify mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, fish and invertebrates into different groups.
  • Scales, fur and feathers – this simpler take on the theme of classification looks at one way to sort animals, using an array of scaly, furry and feathery animals and artefacts.
  • Habitats – take a tour of a variety of habitats, meeting some of our animals who call them home.
  • Evolution – we make observations of animals just like Charles Darwin did to understand how animals evolve.
  • Minibeasts – discover the features of creepy crawlies and meet a range of amazing invertebrates in a dynamic workshop.
  • Conservation – what threats do different animals face? What can we do to help protect them?
  • Making sense of the world – How do animals see, smell, hear, taste and touch the world around them? How is this different to us?

We tailor sessions to different ages and abilities accordingly, and can consider more bespoke sessions upon request.

We cannot offer animal encounter sessions for nursery groups due to the risks involved when handling animals.


Crawley schools: £5 per child, adults free

Non-Crawley schools: £8 per child, adults free

This standard charge applies only to groups that book an educational talk. It includes entry to the Nature Centre and Walled Garden, access to play areas, picnic facilities and the coach park.

All payments can be made on the day of your visit at the Nature Centre office, or by invoice.

Self- led visits (visits without an Animal Encounter Session)

Crawley schools: Free

Non-Crawley schools: £5 per child, adults free

Disability groups

Prices for an Animal Encounter Session are £5 per student.  Self-led visits are free for disability groups.

If you any members of your group are particularly sensitive to smells or loud noises, please take a look at our noises and smells map before you visit: The noises and smells of Tilgate Nature Centre

If your group would benefit from a more tactile experience whilst walking around the Nature Centre use our Sensory Map to find out what you can touch.


For more information, to receive one of our education information packs or to book a session please email or call 01293 521168.