Having raced around to get CJ and myself ready to go to playgroup this morning, the empty carpark and lack of lighting in the church hall served as a reminder that playgroup was taking a 2 week summer break. However, all was not lost as we were about a minute’s walk from Whitefield Park, my favourite of our locals. CJ was on big bike as the sun was out, so a quick freewheel down the road and we were there – as were several other Mums and toddlers from playgroup who presumably have memories as good as mine!
This park is beautifully kept and handily located. It has plentiful carparking and is right next to Whitefield Metrolink Station. The 135 bus also goes along Bury New Road and stop outside Morrison’s and Natwest if you’re coming from Bury/Hamilton Road Park if you’re coming from Manchester. I can confirm they are frequent – 2 went past in the time it took the traffic lights to change!
There’s a well surfaced path around the edge of the playground area with some slopes, great for scooters and bikes. There’s a good selection of equipment for all ages – although I would say that the smaller slide is quite difficult to access for real littl’uns – there’s kind of a tube to climb, with the aid of ropes, which are not there anymore. CJ can now get up it on her own, as she can reach the sides of the tube to pull herself up – she’s nearly 2 1/2, any younger and you’ll probably have to give your toddler a lift up there. There’s a basketball/football court popular with local teenagers after school – this place caters for all age ranges, it also has a couple of immaculate bowling greens.
There’s a toilet in the ranger’s base, but you can only get in if the ranger’s there – if you ask he’ll unlock it for you. There’s no cafe or any such, BUT – this park is surrounded by amenities. There’s a newsagent attached to metrolink station (Mon-Sat) and a large Morrison’s opposite with an attractive cafe overlooking the park – handy too, if you’ve forgotten suncream, wipes or whatever.
Even better, go to the far side of Morrison’s and you’ll find Roma delicatessen attached (open Mon-Sat) an Italian deli serving delicious and reasonably priced food – they also do takeaway sandwiches/pizza. Their pizzas start at £3 to eat in – bargain! They don’t have a children’s menu, but we eat there loads and CJ just shares our food, as the portions are big. I recommend the lot, pizza, pasta – oh and the pasta dishes come with their own bread. They also make their own ice cream. Love this place.
If you’re feeling fancy, Slattery’s is a short walk the opposite way along Bury New Road. It’s a good idea to book if you want to go in their cafe, as it’s always packed, but if you turn up and can’t get a table, buy some cake from downstairs and go and stuff your faces in the park! The chocolate flake cake is a favourite in our house.
Neither of these foodie delights open on Sundays – my tip then would be the “all you can eat buffet” at Forts of India a bit further down Bury New Road from Morrison’s, going towards Bury – still walkable from the Metro/bus stops. The food is heaven and it’s recently had a very flashy refit.
I seem to have spent more time writing about food than parks today – but why not combine both!