People’s Park, Halifax Review for Families

Discovering hidden gems for family outings is a joy, and People’s Park in Halifax is one such delightful find. As a family, we recently explored this historical park, and the experience was nothing short of enchanting. Sir Francis Crossley, inspired by the scenic beauty of New England, envisioned a haven for the hardworking folks of Halifax. 

As we strolled through, we discovered a treasure trove of history, diverse attractions, and plenty of opportunities for family fun. It offered us a delightful experience and plenty of family-friendly activities to enjoy. 

Whether you’re planning a day out with your loved ones or simply looking for a peaceful retreat, People’s Park has something for everyone.

Where is it located?

People’s Park is situated at King Cross Street, Halifax, HX1 2TS. Its central location makes it easily accessible, drawing families from the bustling town and surrounding areas. It also holds a special place in the hearts of the local community and has been designated as a park for the people of Halifax to enjoy forever.

History of People’s Park, Halifax

The park holds a rich history, having been built by Sir Francis Crossley and opened in 1857. Its creation was inspired by Crossley’s visit to New England, where he witnessed the beauty of park spaces designed for the enjoyment of workers. He wanted to replicate this concept in Halifax, ensuring that every hardworking individual had a place to relax and rejuvenate themselves

The park stands as a fine example of a “Joseph Paxton” park. It was designed at the cost of $50,000. Today, it is maintained by Calderdale Council and holds a special place in the hearts of the local community.

As time marched on, People’s Park witnessed a restoration project in 1995. Funded by English Heritage, the Heritage Lottery Fund, Calderdale Council, and West Central Halifax Partnership, this endeavour breathed new life into the park. The Crossley Pavilion, fences, gates, bandstand, play area, water features, statues, and more – all received the loving touch of restoration.

The park proudly boasts a Green Flag status, a mark of its excellence. Adding a touch of history, two large cannons captured during the Crimean War found their place in People’s Park, reminding visitors of historical events.

What is there to do for families?

People’s Park offers a wide range of activities for families to enjoy. Our visit to the park was filled with excitement and adventure. Here are some of our favourite experiences:

Exploring Nature’s Beauty

Upon entering the park, we were greeted by impeccably manicured lawns and vibrant flower beds. The park’s natural beauty is simply breathtaking, with an abundance of trees and flowers. It is the perfect setting for a peaceful and rejuvenating family outing. The well-managed gardens reflect the dedication of the park’s gardeners who work tirelessly to maintain its beauty. Matilda and Barney loved running around on the lush green lawns and taking in the scenic views.

Children’s Play Area

The park features a fantastic children’s play area that kept Matilda and Barney entertained for hours. With swings, slides, and climbing frames, there was no shortage of fun-filled activities for them. It was heartwarming to witness their joy as they explored the various play structures. 

The area is spacious, and there is something to suit children of all ages. They had a blast playing and making new friends while we sat back and enjoyed watching their excitement. It provided hours of entertainment and outdoor fun for our little ones.

Serene Strolls around the Lake

One of the park’s highlights is its serpentine pond or lake. We took our time to admire its tranquil beauty and observe the ducks gliding across the water. The park even has charming cast iron bridges that cross the lake, providing scenic views that our family truly enjoyed.

Ponds and Bridges

As we strolled further into the park, we discovered a peaceful pond teeming with ducks. The presence of beautifully crafted bridges adds to the park’s aesthetic appeal. Walking over the bridges and observing the tranquil water was a highlight for our family. It was a serene and picturesque spot, perfect for capturing family memories.

Cycling and Bike-Friendly Paths

For those who enjoy cycling, People’s Park offers plenty of bike-friendly paths. Being an avid cycling family, we were thrilled to discover the bike-friendly paths within People’s Park.  We brought our own bikes and had a fantastic time exploring the park on wheels. The serpentine pond, crossed by charming Grade II cast iron bridges, added a picturesque touch to our cycling adventure. The 175-metre-long lake to the eastern edge was a serene backdrop for our family escapade. Matilda absolutely loved cycling here, and the paths allowed her to showcase her skills. It’s also a great place to teach your kids how to ride a bike.

Marvellous Statues and Fountain

As we wandered through the park, we encountered various statues and historical features. The Crossley and Saville fountain, beautifully constructed in 1864, stood proudly at the centre of the park. It served as a focal point, capturing our attention with its intricate design and historical significance. 

Additionally, the statues along the terrace, including Apollo, Hercules, and Venus, added a touch of elegance and artistic charm to the park.

Facilities At Park

The People’s Park boasts several amenities that ensure visitors have a comfortable and enjoyable experience. These include:

Restrooms: There are restroom facilities conveniently located within the park, making it convenient for families with young children..

Seating Areas: The park provides ample seating areas with benches, where visitors can take a moment to rest and soak in the beauty of their surroundings.

Cafe: Adjacent to the park, there is a cosy cafe where you can grab a snack or a warm beverage during your visit.

Parking: If you’re planning to arrive by car, there are parking options available on Park Road HX1, Hopwood Lane, and the surrounding streets. Just make sure to check any parking restrictions before leaving your vehicle.

Areas For Improvement

While the overall experience at People’s Park was delightful, we noticed a few areas that could benefit from some attention. Some of the water features, such as ponds, needed cleaning. The presence of rubbish in these areas detracted from the park’s natural beauty.

Additionally, broken play equipment and fenced-off areas, including the boarded-up bandstand, gave a slightly neglected impression. We hope these aspects can be addressed to maintain the park’s appeal.

Would you recommend it?

Absolutely! Despite the minor areas for improvement, People’s Park in Halifax has something for everyone in the family. The park offers a perfect blend of history, natural beauty, and recreational activities. It provides an opportunity for children to play, explore, and connect with nature. 

Families can enjoy a peaceful day out, immersing themselves in the serene surroundings. Whether you’re looking for a peaceful stroll, a place for your children to play, or simply some quality outdoor time, People’s Park is the perfect choice. We highly recommend a visit to People’s Park in Halifax for a few hours of entertainment and outdoor fun.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is there a café?

Yes, there is a lovely cafe located near the park where you can enjoy a snack or beverage during your visit. It offers a cosy atmosphere and is a great place to recharge before or after exploring the park.

What is your favourite part?

While we enjoyed every aspect of People’s Park, our favourite part was the serene serpentine pond. The tranquil atmosphere, the cast-iron bridges, and the wildlife added a touch of magic to our visit. It was a delightful experience for the whole family.

Is it suitable for Dog walkers?

Yes, dogs are allowed in People’s Park. However, dog owners need to clean up after their pets. There are designated bins throughout the park for proper waste disposal.

Can we bring our bikes?

Absolutely! People’s Park has bike-friendly paths, allowing visitors to bring their own bikes and enjoy cycling within the park. We brought our bikes and enjoyed a couple of hours cycling through the park’s pathways. It’s a family-friendly activity that adds an extra layer of enjoyment.

Is there parking available?

Yes, there are parking options available. We found on-street parking on Park Road HX1 and Hopwood Lane, providing convenient access to the park. However, we recommend checking the parking restrictions on Park Road for a hassle-free experience.

Is there any entrance fee for visiting the park?

No, there are no entrance fees for visiting the People’s Park. It’s a public space open to everyone, making it an accessible destination for families on a budget.

Pros & Cons


  • Great walking routes
  • Nice cycle paths
  • Nice Play Park


  • A little dirty
  • Litter

Park enjoyment rating

Photo by Ashley Groom on Unsplash

Last Updated on December 11, 2023 by Ryan

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