From outdoor walks and sports, to history and heritage, these top eight free activities will ensure your spring is packed full to the brim.
Coun Michael Graham, Cabinet Member or Culture. Leisure and Sport at Wakefield Council, said: “Our district is a great place and has lots of free places to visit, which is great for families at weekends and over the holidays.”
1. Anglers Country Park
Located four miles south-east of Wakefield, Anglers Country Park is a perfect place to explore for nature lovers, walkers, dog walkers, cyclists, picnickers – and not forgetting those little adventurers! For an adventure they won’t forget, purchase your Adventure Trail Activity Pack from the Visitor Centre (open 10am – 4pm daily) and follow the Room on the Broom Trail to find the well-known characters from the story. There’s also have an adventure playground for burning off that excess energy! For those who want to take it easy, enjoy a relaxing stroll along the two mile lakeside path. The path around the lake is both wheelchair and pushchair friendly and electric mobility scooters are available free of charge for use within the park. The Woodland Café offers the opportunity for a well-deserved break and the chance to grab some delicious food and a hot or cold drink.
2. The National Coal Mining Museum
Experience the National Coal Mining Museum, the site of two former working coal mines. Explore Caphouse, a modern colliery that witnessed more than two hundred years of coal production. While you’re there, take a journey 140m underground on one of our Underground Tours, where you’ll hear stories from former coal miners about their careers and the industry’s fascinating history. Back above ground, learn about the people and communities at the heart of the industry in the galleries, meet real ponies in the Discovery Centre, take a trip around the Nature Trail, let off some steam in the adventure playground, and top it all off with a stop at the café! On weekends and holidays, hop aboard and ride from Caphouse to Hope (and back again!) on the battery powered Paddy Train, which was once used to ferry miners around t’pit.
3. Castleford Museum
Step back in time and explore the history of Castleford from the Bronze Age to the present day. Young and old alike will find a trove of treasures to investigate, and fascinating stories to uncover. Discover what life was like under Roman rule and marvel at the ancient objects. Celebrate the town’s rich rugby heritage. From the formation of the earliest teams to the superstars of today, allow yourself to get misty-eyed with pride as you delve into the history of this very northern sport. Immerse yourself in the life of local sculptor Henry Moore as you get up close to his stunning works.
Photo: Wakefield Council
4. Pugneys Country Park and Sandal Castle
A haven for wildlife, the country park offers nature lovers the chance to see a variety of natural habitats. Head along the woodland trail to see a glimpse of Pugneys’ second lake, a hive of wildlife activity, take a stroll along the lakeside path, or take a ride on the Pugneys Light Railway (available on selected weekends – www.pugneyslightrailway.co.uk). You can also make the short walk up the hill to Sandal Castle and see how picturesque the country park looks from above. The more adventurous can explore the country park on two wheels, bring your own or hire one for the day. The whole family can get involved with child trailers available for the little ones! After that, treat yourself to a bite to eat in the café or, if the weather is fine, bring your own picnic and enjoy the panoramic views across the lake.
Photo: Wakefield Council