BBC South Yorkshire
contributor Rory Dollard
summer is here, mad dogs and pasty Englishmen are heading for the
midday sun - and what better place to find it than one of Sheffield's
very own parks?
afternoon in the park is as essential to an English summer as 'unseasonal
rain' and ill-advised shorts teamed with milky-white legs.
the unbeatable price of absolutely nothing, one can enjoy the rays,
the views and, most importantly, the fact that other people may
here's an introduction to three of Sheffield's best parks.
is undeniably the unofficial sporting home of the Steel City greenbelt.
some parks can only boast a half-hearted game of 3 and in with a
cheap plastic ball, Endcliffe is certainly for those who want to
make the most of the weather.
a ball in Endcliffe Park!
always seem to be at least three fully fledged but unofficial sixteen-a-side
football games going on, alongside the other summery pursuits of
Frisbee throwing and cricket played with £2.99 junior sets.
is not merely for the active park-goer though - it's an equally
rewarding pastime watching these games unfolding.
eye will usually yield at least two of the following characters
The sickeningly talented 10 year old with a David Beckham haircut
The competitive Dad
The once sickeningly talented student who is now trying to work
off a beer belly while playing with a can of Carling in his hand.
you are one of the above or if amateur (and unwanted) refereeing
is your thing then Endcliffe is the place for you.
Players, spectators, anyone with a piece of sporting equipment that
can be used outside
BRING: Shorts, trainers and a battery operated CD player
- everybody will thank you!
is the park for the leisurely walkers amongst us. It has the Mappin
art gallery and the City
Museum in its grounds and these impressive buildings could
provide the perfect focal point for those who find the higher things
in life more desirable than practising free kicks or cover drives.
Park: Easy on the eye
park itself is also rather classy. No muddy goalmouths or roughshod
greenery here, instead there are beautifully maintained flower arrangements
and a series of statues and monuments (including an understated
perfect setting for a romantic stroll or a family trip (kids with
a love for questions, facts or big stuffed animals will devour the
Those who like their parks to be easy on the eye
BRING: A camera
is a little out of the city centre but is worth the trip for those
interested in playing a little mini golf, trying their hand at bowls
or even attempting a spot of orienteering.
park is situated just a couple of yards off the main road but once
you are there you are immediately in its thrall. It covers much
more ground than the other parks in the area and as such is much
more visually entertaining.
Graves Park - the biggest of the Sheffield parks
top of the usual welcome expanses of greenery there are also a couple
of wilder areas in Graves Park and a woodland area with a number
of little streams, bridges and other such fairytale garnishes.
are a number of activities to partake in too, from the well-kept
mini golf course to a hedge-bordered bowling green.
is the best venue for those who wish to make a visit to the park
more of an activity in itself as opposed to a piece of scenery to
eat ice cream in. The Graves
Park animal farm is also nearby.
Those who have a few hours on their hands
BRING: A couple of quid and a car full of eager kids
a favourite activity or pastime that costs less than a tenner? Tell
us about it!
In Endcliffe Park, there is a walk up to the ponts further up the
park, inhabited by several species of Ducks, Geese and swans. When
you reach the opposite end of the park, you just need to cross a
road to find yet another park (forgotten what itis called).
park is beautifully laden with flowerbed either side of the walkway.
Walking further brings you to a woodland walk which is often frequented
by Walkers, joggers and cyclists.
you continue walking for approximately 30 min, crossing only 2 or
3 roads, you come to a woody park known as Forge-Dam. This is a
wooded park wich a play area for the kids (including a relly long
Slide, swings etc.) and a Cafe for the aduls which makes you feel
you've traveled back through time to the 1940's with it's painted
wooden panneling, old coffee boiler and the style of customer service.
worth making an afternoon out and costs very little.
comment though, if you reach Forge-Dam, be prepared to walk back,
or a possible 30min wait for a bus back to town.