I didn’t really discover the genius of Bluewater until after I had Jack. There’s no denying it has a certain reputation garnered through stories like the one about banning hoodies, which doesn’t exactly work in its favour. After a one off visit in my pre-baby days, I have to admit I couldn’t really see the attraction since the majority of the outlets are standard high street offerings. Why would a girl-about-town head to Bluewater when she could go to Oxford Street, Bond Street or Knightsbridge for a retail fix?
Of course, I had completely missed the point. Bluewater has what all those other places don’t. Clean, well equiped, baby changing and feeding rooms every few hundred yards. When you’re a new mum, just getting to grips with breast feeding, nappy changing or simply knowing what to do when your baby cries, it is an absolute haven. I’m not ashamed to admit it’s where I gained my confidence dealing with all those things while out and about. And I even managed to get in a bit of shopping while Jack slept or charmed the shop assistants.
Whilst I can’t claim to have tried all the eateries, Carluccio’s (which is always good with children) is great and during the week when it’s fairly quiet almost all the Starbucks and other coffee outlets are great places to sit down with a baby. If you’re anywhere in SouthEast London and drive, it is easy and quick to get to and a whole lot less stressful than heading into town (until you are a fully fledged Super New Mum, naturally).
Feeding Facilities: 5/5
Changing Facilities: 5/5
Overall rating: 17/25 £