[AD] I can’t believe the kids are back to school next week – the summer holidays have gone by so quickly! With school uniform and stationery shopping lists in mind, we were kindly invited by The Oracle in Reading to finish off our back to school shopping. I always leave school shoe shopping towards the end of the holiday in case Tyler’s feet grow over August! We also had to get plimsoles and some stationery. Getting to Reading is very easy from Slough, we hopped on a GWR train and it’s only a 20 minute journey. The shopping centre is a short walk from the station. If you are going by car, you just drive straight down the M4 and there is plenty of parking at The Oracle.
After having some lunch by the Riverside (they are are a lot of restaurants to choose from there – McDonalds, Nandos, Pizza Express, Franco Manca and more), we headed to Debenhams. The childrens department is on the lowest level and handily the toys are there, so the kids got to look at toys before we browsed the back to school offering. They have an offer of 30% off schoolwear and school shoes at the moment. School uniform and coats were out, and in the general shoe section were the school shoes. There were dinosaur designs for boys as well as plain shoes. Tyler prefers shoes with velcro straps, so he tried this pair on.
I thought they were nice and sturdy but he wanted to keep looking. We did buy plimsoles from Debenhams. They were priced at £8, and with 30% off it came to £5.60 at the till.
Next we headed to Smiggle for some stationery. We were after a pencil case and a sharpener. The kids found a table set up for testing out pens and they had great fun here. I love this shop because it is so colourful – I wish Smiggle was around when I was at school! For Tyler we chose a scented ‘planets’ pencil case and a blue sharpener, plus we bought two packs of scented HB pencils. That’s right, SCENTED HB pencils!! There are 4 pencils in a pack and Tyler chose the chocolate scent, whilst Lily wanted salted caramel donut flavour. The pencils come with an eraser at the top and cost £3.75 each or 2 packs for £5.
We then went to House of Fraser to look at shoes and we found their Back to School area on the Lower Floor. They had a large selection of sportswear for PE and shoes along the walls featuring different brands. There were Kickers and Kangol for school shoes as well as Lonsdale and Nike black trainers. I remember every girl in my class at secondary school had Kickers shoes back in the 1990s! Tyler really liked the Kangol shoes, so we asked the lady for a Size 12. She found a pair in the stock room that had three velcro straps and a good chunky sole, and it was down from £40 to £20. Tyler tried them one and he loved them!
The kids were quite tired after all our shopping so we stopped off for a Krispy Kreme doughnut – you know how much Lily loves a chocolate sprinkles doughnut! And there was a Krispy Kreme cafe in the shopping centre, just outside House of Fraser – perfect.
The other shops I would have looked at for school stuff in The Oracle is H&M and Next, but it was good that we had found what we were looking for already. With our school shopping done we headed back to the train station – where you should look out for this rainbow staircase. How cool does it look?!
Here are the school items we bought from The Oracle that day:
Black Plimsoles – Debenhams, £5.60 (on 30% off offer)
Scented ‘Planets’ Pencil Case – Smiggle, £7.50 (on 25% off offer)
Sharpener – Smiggle, £3
Scented HB Pencils – Smiggle 2 packs for £5 (£3.75 each)
Kangol School Shoes – House of Fraser, £20 (Half price)
If you have some Back to School shopping left to do, I can definitely recommend visiting The Oracle in Reading. We found some really good offers, and all the places to eat by the river make it a lovely day out.
Disclosure: We were kindly given a giftcard to do our Back to School shopping at The Oracle. These are my honest thoughts and opinions as usual.