Greenhead Park is a great place to visit, especially now it has been restored to its former glory. Below is some information about what’s available and when, which we hope will be useful for vistors.
The park opens daily at 7am.
Closing times are seasonal: January & February 6pm; March & April 8pm; May, June July & August 10pm; September & October 8pm; November & December 6pm
There are plenty of play opportunities in the park for children of all ages. An exciting new playground, near the Cafe in the Park and sports courts, was created during the restoration of the park and includes a zip wire, playtower, swings and more… A fenced area for younger children houses smaller equipment and a sand play area, and there’s also a climbing wall nearby and picnic tables for families to enjoy.
A second play area between the lake and the war memorial was originally intended to be temporary until the new playground was ready. Due to popular demand this was kept for five years, but drainage issues and deterioration of some of the equipment meant its time had run out. Following pleas from parents not to remove a popular and well-used facility, it was agreed to install a new permanent play area in the same spot with improved drainage and landscaping. Part of the new play area, aimed at younger children, is now open and it should be fully completed in time for the 2016 summer holidays.
The paddling pool has provided summer fun for children since the 1930’s and is still a big attraction on sunny days.
The pool is normally open from late May to September, depending on the weather. The water is treated daily to keep it clean and leaves, debris and litter are also removed on a daily basis by Parks staff.
Please note that children using the paddling pool must be under adult supervision at all times.
Run by volunteers from the Huddersfield Society of Model Engineers, the current miniature railway opened in Greenhead Park in August 2000. Live steam locomotives run along the 1/3 mile track, starting and finishing at the station behind the Refreshment Rooms building.
The railway operates at weekends (starting in March) and Bank holidays from 1pm to 4pm – weather permitting – and on Tuesday and Thursday afternoons in the school summer holidays. There are extra themed rides at Easter, Halloween and Christmas. See our events listings for more details of special events.
Tickets: £1.30 a ride, family (up to 5 people) £3.50
Othe family attractions
A variety of children’s rides, and sometimes a bouncy castle, are operated by the Hamer family near the railway and playground at weekends and daily during the school summer holidays (weather permitting). This family run business has been operating rides in Greenhead Park since 1946 and has now passed down to the third generation!
Horse and carriage rides are a new attraction in the park. Provided by Rising Sun Farm in Holmfirth, the carriage rides are on offer on the belvedere below the War Memorial at weekends, on bank holidays and daily during the school summer holidays, weather permitting.
The largest of the park’s five original lakes was filled in in the 1950’s but was reinstated as part of the recent restoration. The restored lake has been designed to attract wildlife.
As soon as the lake was filled, a pair of mallard ducks arrived and a brood of ducklings soon followed! The lake is now home to wildlife of all kinds and surveys have identified a wide variety of species both in and on the water. Feeding the ducks is a popular activity but over-feeding with bread does bring problems, especially in the summer. Too much bread is not good for ducks or other local wildlife (apart from the rats!). Better alternatives recommended by the Canal and River Trust include corn, oats, bird seed and even defrosted peas.
The restored bandstand is a great venue for music of all kinds including brass bands, jazz bands and choirs. Check our events listings for details of what’s on. The council and the Friends of Greenhead Park are keen to encourage more groups to perform on the bandstand and help keep the park’s musical heritage alive. Interested groups are welcome to contact us and there’s also an information leaflet with details of how to put on an event on the bandstand.
Heritage information boards
A series of 10 information boards tells visitors about the history of the Park and its main features. A leaflet showing the locations of the boards is available at both Park cafes or you can go to our Park history page and download it.
The conservatory was added to the park in 1930 to provide ‘beautiful foliage and flowering plants’ for all to enjoy as well as educating school children in the story of ‘economic’ plants such as tea, coffee, pineapple and tobacco. There was even a banana plant that was much admired! Although no longer suitable for tropical plants, the recently restored conservatory is still an attractive addition to the park with its flowered-bordered pond and brightly coloured exotic plants. The light and airy space is heated by eco-friendly underfloor heating powered by a ground-source heat pump.
The conservatory is open to visitors when The Park cafe is open (see below) and is also used for exhibitions and special events.
Food and Drink
Visitors to Greenhead Park have a choice of two excellent eateries both with disabled access and toilets.
The long established Cafe in the Park, in the newly refurbished Refreshment Rooms building by the tennis courts, is open from 9am to 3pm in winter and 9am to 4pm in summer for hot and cold food and drinks, ice creams and lollies. Outdoor seating is available on the verandah overlooking the tennis courts. For more details telephone 01484 532561 or e-mail email@example.com.
In August 2011, a new establishment, The Park, opened for business in newly built premises behind the Conservatory. Customers can choose to sit in the new building or the conservatory itself, and there’s outdoor seating available too. The Park is open from 10am (9am at weekends) to 4pm, with extended hours of 9am to 4.30pm on summer weekends and school holidays. There’s a good choice of locally sourced food and drink on the menu plus a special children’s menu. Breakfast is served up to 11.30am, lunch from 11.30am to 2.30pm, and drinks and cakes are available all day. As well as the usual selection of hot and cold drinks, The Park now offers a range of delicious iced drinks.
The Park is also able to cater for daytime and evening functions and now has a licence for weddings in the conservatory too (limited to 3 per year). E-mail GHPark.firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 01484 221515 for more details or to discuss your requirements.
There’s a Pay and Display car park (including disabled parking spaces) behind The Park which costs £1 per hour for up to 3 hours – customers of The Park get one hour’s parking refunded.
The restored Refreshment Rooms building offers a bookable inside space for community events and activities, and the room can also be booked for private functions. The Friends of Greenhead Park hold open meetings and our popular History Hour sessions there – see our events listings for details of these and other events in the Community Room.
For more information about hiring the Community Room, call in or contact the Cafe in the Park (see above), or e-mail email@example.com.
Greenhead Park Pavilion
A recent addition to the park facilities is the attractive modern pavilion by the bowling greens. This provides a much-needed base for the Greenhead Park Bowling Club and the Friends of Greenhead Park.
Thanks to support from the Kirklees Environment Grant Scheme, the pavilion is topped by an attractive and environmentally-friendly sedum roof which we hope will also encourage others to consider installing this form of roofing. Our record of Changes in the Park includes some pictures of the construction of the pavilion and installation of the green roof.
The building is used by the Bowling Club for a social/games session on Tuesdays out of season as well as providing the facilities for matches during the bowling season. The Friends use the pavilion for our weekly drop-in session on Wednesday afternoons and for smaller meetings and events. We are open to ideas for other uses – contact us to find out more.
As well as the facilities available to customers of the two cafes, there are public toilets situated at the opposite end of the Refreshment Rooms building to the Cafe in the Park. These include a wheelchair accessible toilet and baby changing facilities. Unfortunately, the council is not currently able to keep the toilets open all the time the park is open, and in winter they can only be guaranteed to be open from 9am to 3pm. During the summer, the toilets are normally open from 9am until 6.30pm.
Tennis and multi-sports courts
The Park has 9 tennis courts and 2 Multi-Use Games Areas for public use. The courts are free to use, and there’s now an online reservation system for the tennis courts, so you can book to play at a time that suits you. There are tennis coaching sessions on Tuesday evenings and a new Greenhead Park Tennis League starts in September 2016.
Greenhead Park’s bowling greens opened in June 1927, and the Bowling Club formed that year has been going ever since, so there’s a long tradition of bowling in the park.
Anyone is welcome to bowl on the greens during the bowling season, when they are not in use by Greenhead Park Bowling Club (who currently play in the Huddersfield & District Veterans League). There is almost always at least one green free for the public to use, even when the Club is playing at home.
If you don’t have your own, you can borrow bowls free of charge from the Friends of Greenhead Park on Wednesdays from 1.30pm to 2.30pm – and other times by arrangement. Contact us for more details.
For more information about Greenhead Park Bowling Club, contact Geoff on 07445 994791 or Richard on 07813 738162.
Since May 2016, the lower bowling green is also being used by Huddersfield Croquet Club for some of their Sunday matches, as well as weekly practice sessions on Tuesday evenings and Friday mornings. Newcomers are welcome to come along and find out more about the game. For more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Completed in autumn 2013 is another sports facility – for those who like bowling with a French twist. Petanque – or boules – has proved popular in Firth Park, Heckmondwike and Honley, and the new Greenhead Park terrain is now attracting people of all ages. Huddersfield Petanque Club runs regular sessions at the terrain and newcomers are always welcome. You can find out more about the Club and its activities at Huddersfield Petanque.
Orienteering and running routes
A new permanent orienteering course, installed in summer 2015, provides a fun way to navigate round the park. There are four options to choose from – two short courses (A & B) which can be completed by wheelchair users or people with buggies, scooters etc; one medium length (C); and one which takes in all the controls (D). Just download the map, which includes guidance on how to complete the course, and get orientated!
Another new addition (August 2015) is a measured route for running, jogging or walking 1, 2 or 3 miles. Greenhead Park’s 3-2-1 route caters for everyone including pushchair and wheelchair users, as it is all on pathways and there are no steps involved. There’s a map showing the route, or you can just follow the colour coded signs.
Opened in summer 2013 is a Trim Trail for fitness fans of all ages who’d like a workout in the fresh air rather than the gym. You’ll find a variety of equipment at four points around the outer edge of the main events field including stride jumps, ladder and abs bench.
The Greenhead Park skatepark is a great attraction for young people who want to hone their skateboarding skills. The site welcomes BMX bikers and rollerbladers as well as skateboarders, and there’s free and open access during park opening hours.