Parks

Britain, places to visit, attractions, heritage
Find places to visit in Britain by name, location, type of attraction, or other keyword.

This listings directory of over 950 entries is being phased out.
It now excludes places and things of interest in North East England.
These can be found in ABAB’s Places.
Places to visit in Yorkshire will be moved to ABAB’s Places during May.

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Abbey Park, Leicester

Abbey Park is Leicester’s premier park and opened in 1882.  It includes gardens, lakes, a café, sports pitches and facilities for bowling, tennis and boating.  It is a place for families and lies about a mile north of the city centre.  The River Soar divides it into two distinct parts – a Victorian park with shrubberies, boating lake and miniature railway, and the western part which includes the remains of the 12th century Leicester Abbey, where Cardinal Wolsey died and was buried, and the ruins of the 17th century Cavendish House, a mansion which was Charles I’s HQ before the Battle of Naseby.  It was destroyed and plundered by Royalist troops.

Region/Nation
Location/Address
Abbey Park Road
Leicester
County
Leicestershire
Post Code
LE4 5AQ
Main Historic Period
Victorian
Useful Website Address
Primary Management
Local Authority
BOLTON ABBEY

Bolton Abbey is an estate about 6 miles east of Skipton that is owned by the Cavendish family, the Dukes of Devonshire.  Much of it is open to the public (there is a charge for parking), offering the opportunity for a dip in the river in good weather, as well as miles of family-friendly picturesque walks by the riverside and through ancient woodland..  The estate is named for Bolton Priory, which was founded on the banks of the River Wharfe in the 12th century by the Augustinian order, and which was dissolved in 1540.  The ruins of the east end of the abbey church are still there, but the west end is still a functioning church.  The estate includes Bolton Hall (a private residence), Barden Tower (a ruined 16th century hunting lodge), tea rooms and the Devonshire Arms hotel.

Location/Address
Nr Skipton
County
North Yorkshire
Post Code
BD23 6EX
Main Historic Period
Medieval
Useful Website Address
Tip/Nearby
Embsay Steam Railway, Yorkshire Dales
Primary Management
Private - open to the public
CALKE ABBEY

Calke is a mansion and estate on the site of a 12th century Augustinian abbey. The present Palladian style mansion is a consequence of reconstruction work dating from 1701, built around an Elizabethan house. The estate ultimately came into the hands of the Harpur-Crewe family and was acquired by the National Trust in a state of decay. The Trust has preserved the house pretty much in the condition it was found, packed full of artwork and stuffed animals, with an appearance largely unchanged since the late Victorian period - including the children's' nursery. It is a curious and fascinating time capsule. Outside are gardens, outhouses and extensive grounds, including a nature reserve.

Note: Entry to the house is by timed ticket.

Region/Nation
Location/Address
Ticknall
County
Derbyshire
Post Code
DE73 7LE
Main Historic Period
Victorian
Tip/Nearby
Sudbury Hall. Handy for Nottingham.
Primary Management
National Trust
Culzean Castle

Culzean Castle and Country Park is an enormous estate, once the seat of the Kennedy family, which includes woodland and seashore walks, a walled garden, large pond, various structures and follies in the grounds, an astonishing children's' adventure playground and the castle itself, perched on a clifftop. Actually, it's not really a castle, but a large stately house redesigned by Robert Adam and built between 1777 and 1792. The top floor was gifted to the Supreme Head of Allied Forces in Western Europe, later 34th President of the United States of America, Dwight D Eisenhower, to be used in his lifetime. It is now a hotel.

Region/Nation
Location/Address
Maybole
County
South Ayrshire
Post Code
KA19 8LE
Main Historic Period
Georgian
Tip/Nearby
Turnberry Lighthouse & ruined castle, Souter Johnnie's Cottage
Primary Management
National Trust for Scotland
Green Park Memorial Gates

One of the Royal Parks. Green Park is extensively used for sunbathing and picnic in good weather. One of its features are the Memorial Gates, dedicated to five million people from the Indian Sub-Continent, Africa and the Caribbean who served or lost their lives in the two World Wars. Keep your ears peeled for Royal Artillery Gun Salutes. It’s also a nice walk between The Mall and Green Park tube station and fun to walk round the roads surrounding Clarence House and St James’s Palace.

Post code is approximate.

Region/Nation
Location/Address
Westminster
County
London
Post Code
SW1A 1AA
Main Historic Period
Stuart
Useful Website Address
Tip/Nearby
The Ritz, Buckingham Palace
Primary Management
Royal Parks
Greenwich Park

One of the Royal Parks.  You could lose yourself wandering around Greenwich anyway where, in addition to pay-to-visit attractions like the Cutty Sark, there are free places like the Queen’s House and the National Maritime Museum to see.  Greenwich Park, once part of the grounds of Greenwich Palace (birthplace of Henry VIII and Elizabeth I), overlooks the Thames and is packed with things of interest.  There’s a deer park, orchard – and it is home to the Royal Observatory, Greenwich Mean Time and the Prime Meridian (which you need to pay to visit).  Less well known is Elizabeth’s oak, alleged scene of Tudor picnics and what-not, and a Saxon cemetery.

Post code is approximate

Region/Nation
Location/Address
Greenwich
County
London
Post Code
SE10 9NF
Main Historic Period
Stuart
Useful Website Address
Tip/Nearby
National Maritime Museum, Queens House, Cutty Sark
Primary Management
Royal Parks
HAMPSTEAD HEATH

Hampstead Heath is a vast park, a slice of ancient countryside, covering 790 acres in north London. It includes woodland and heathland as well as ponds and leisure facilities. Notable features are Parliament Hill, well-known for its views of London and kit-flying, the Hampstead Heath Barrow, or Tumulus, once thought to be the burial place of Queen Boudicca and Kenwood House, an 18th century mansion famous for its art collection and concerts. The heath was once renowned as a lair of highwaymen; today, it is popular with walkers, runners and families.

Hampstead Heath is managed by the City of London Corporation. It is accessible from a variety of places - the address given is a guide only. Click on the link to the City of London website and download a useful map.

Region/Nation
Location/Address
East Heath Road
Hampstead
County
London
Post Code
NW3 1BN
Link to featured article
Useful Website Address
Primary Management
Local Authority
HEIGHTS of ABRAHAM

The Heights of Abraham is a 60 acre country park on top of Masson Hill, Matlock, accessed either by cable car or a steep zig-zag path. The heights are named after a supposed resemblance to the Plains of Abraham, also known as the Heights of Abraham, in Quebec, Canada, where James Wolfe died in battle. The park has been an attraction since Victorian times and includes two show caves, views over the Derwent and its valley, picnic areas, exhibitions, shops, cafes and a play area. A cable car ticket is relatively expensive, but you can understand why - and it includes tours of the show caves.

Note: To visit by cable car, the station is adjacent to Matlock Bath railway station, where there is a pay and display car park operated by the local council. Post code is for this car park - there are others.

Region/Nation
Location/Address
Matlock Bath
County
Derbyshire
Post Code
DE4 3NT
Main Historic Period
Modern
Useful Website Address
Tip/Nearby
Cromford Mills, Peak District Mining Museum
Primary Management
Private - open to the public
The Kelpies

The Helix is a large community park between Falkirk and Grangemouth, bisected by the Forth and Clyde Canal, formed from regenerated land and including a lake, wetlands, walking and cycle paths, cafes and a visitor centre. But its most famous feature is the Kelpies, two massive steel sculptures of horses heads, inspired by industrial horse power and mythical creatures. The Kelpies can be seen from the M9, but are best viewed from the park.

Region/Nation
Location/Address
The Helix
Falkirk
County
Stirlingshire
Post Code
FK2 7ZT
Main Historic Period
Modern
Link to featured article
Useful Website Address
Tip/Nearby
Falkirk Wheel, Rough Castle
Primary Management
Local Authority
Hyde Park - Speakers' Corner

One of the Royal Parks. Hyde Park borders Mayfair and Park Lane, with the Wellington Arch and Hyde Park Corner in the south and Marble Arch, close to where the Tyburn Tree once stood, to the north. Hyde Park often plays hosts to concerts and is famous for Speakers’ Corner – a traditional place where anyone can spout about anything they like (provided it’s legal); Karl Marx, Vladimir Lenin and George Orwell are all known to have used the area to demonstrate free speech. At its southern end, you’ll find the Diana Princess of Wales Fountain. You can go horse riding in Hyde Park – and you’ll sometimes see the Household Cavalry exercising its horses there.

Post code is approximate.

Region/Nation
Location/Address
Belgravia-ish
County
London
Post Code
W2 2UH
Main Historic Period
Victorian
Useful Website Address
Tip/Nearby
Marble Arch, Apsley House, Harrods
Primary Management
Royal Parks

If your favourite attraction is not listed yet, and you have a good quality digital photograph of it that you are able to freely send, please get in touch

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