Heaton Park

Orientation & Geography

Europe, United Kingdom, England

Heaton Park, covering an area variously reported as 600 acres (242.8 ha), 247 hectares, 640 acres (259.0 ha), over 640 acres (259.01 hectares) and 650 acres (263.0 ha) is the biggest park in Greater Manchester, England and one of the biggest municipal parks in Europe. The park comprises the grounds of a Grade I listed, neoclassical 18th century country house, Heaton Hall. The hall was remodelled to a design by James Wyatt in 1772, and is now open to the public as a museum and events venue. Heaton Park was sold to Manchester City Council in 1902, by the Earl of Wilton, to be kept for the enjoyment and recreation of the public and so it has remained to this day. It has one of the United Kingdom's few concrete towers, the Heaton Park BT Tower. The park was renovated as part of a millennium project partnership between the Heritage Lottery Fund and Manchester City Council at a cost of over £10 million. Some of the buildings and original vistas from the 18th century landscape design were restored. The restoration of the park was singled out for an award by the British Association of Landscape Artists from 100 entries in November 2005. It contains an 18-hole golf course, tennis courts, a boating lake, an animal farm, a pitch and putt course, a golf driving range, woodlands, ornamental gardens, an observatory, an adventure playground, a Papal Monument and a volunteer-run tramway system and museum (operational every Sunday, and bank holiday, afternoon during the summer months). The park is listed Grade II by English Heritage and contains nine listed buildings. It has the only flat green bowling greens in Manchester, which were built for the 2002 Commonwealth Games.