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Bandstand in Abington Park with green grass and flowerbeds.
Pathway lined with trees in autumn at Abington Park.
Exterior view of Abington Park Manor at Abington Park.
View of the pigeonry tower at Abington Park.

Abington Park

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Please be aware of government guidelines before setting off.

Government Guidelines
  • Check out the Manor House and Museum, once home to Shakespeare's granddaughter.
  • Wander on the site of the historic medieval village that used to exist on the parkland.
  • Head to one of the family events at Abington Park Museum to make crafts and learn.
  • Hire a pedalo and feed the ducks at one of Abington Park's beautiful lakes.
  • Kids can explore each of the multiple play areas and play all day!

Located in Northampton, Abington Park is the oldest in the area and has a long and fascinating history. With lakes, playgrounds and even a museum, this Northamptonshire park is the perfect place for all members of the family to play, explore and learn.

The area of Abington has been around for centuries and even got a mention in the Domesday book of 1086. Originally a small medieval village, you can still see the outlines of the streets as you wander around Abington Park today, and the old village pond, which is now a garden.

Throughout history, the Park has been central to what is now known as the town of Abington, as well as the surrounding Northamptonshire area. History enthusiasts from across the world know of Abington Park as one of the first places in England to use the famous method of a ducking stool to identify witches. Abington Park was once the location of the Abington Gallows, in which five accused of witchcraft in the Northamptonshire Witch Trials saw their demise in 1612. Today, you can find the site of the gallows at the crossroads in the Park. You can also find a 17th century water house that still stands in the Park, as well as hunting gates that remain from the 1800s.

What we now know as the museum in Abington Park, was once Abington Park Manor House, built around 1500, and was occupied by nobility until 1841. One of the most famous residents was William Shakespeare's granddaughter, Elizabeth Bernard, who lived in the Manor in the mid-1600's. Throughout the years the Manor was expanded, and parklands added, which in the late 17th century led to the original medieval village being depopulated, with only the outlines of the streets now remaining. The Manor building was converted into a psychiatric asylum in 1845 and remained as such until the Park was donated to the Northampton Council at the end of the 19th century. Now, the Park and Manor House have both been restored, with the Manor House now being home to the Abington Park Museum, as well as The Museum of Leathercraft. If you fancy delving back a little deeper in time, head to the nearby church of St Peter and St Paul, which dates back to the 13th century, and is the final resting place of Elizabeth Bernard.

As a Grade I listed building, Abington Park Museum is well worth a visit if you're coming to the Park, and is filled with memorabilia and artefacts that will take you back to the lives of the people who once occupied the house. There are also lots of great Abington Park events on throughout the year at the Museum. From family Easter Egg trails to craft afternoons, there are plenty of things to do as a family when visiting the museum. For those interested in the paranormal, you can even book to attend one of the Ghost Night events at the museum, where you'll experience the spookiest parts of Abington Park Museum after dark.

As well as the fantastic history of the park, there are also lots of great things to do with kids on a visit to this Northampton Park. With over 100-acres of land to explore, you'll find lakes, gardens, an aviary and lots of nature trails. For those who like sports, there are tennis courts and fitness equipment available in the park, for you to test your skills and let out your competitive side. There are also two lakes in the park, including a model boating lake, where kids can adults can race their model boats! In the summer, you'll also find paddle boats and pedalos available to ride on the boating lake. There are multiple play areas in the park with climbing frames, swings, roundabouts and much more for kids to explore. Plus, with all the surrounding green space, there is lots of space to sit and relax afterwards. To take in some of the local sights and nature once the kids have enjoyed the play area, why not check out the Abington Park Walk, which takes you the roughly 3km distance around the Park. Depending on your time frame this walk can take anything from 1 hour to the whole day, if you want to check out the Abington Park Museum and maybe dip into the church, play area and aviary.

Another unique feature of this Park is the 'Garden for the Blind', a sensory garden that is made to include textured plants to feel, and lots of fragrant flowers and herbs to smell. This is also great for kids to aid their sensory development, or for those with sensory needs.

If you're ready for something to eat after all that exploring, head to Abington Park Café for coffees, snacks and hot meals available every day. There are also lots of places to stop for a picnic if you decide to bring your own food. Alternatively, head into Abington town for some great local cafes and restaurants where you can grab a bite to eat.

If you enjoyed your family day out at Abington Park, Northampton and are looking for more brilliant days out in the Northamptonshire areas, make sure to add Sywell Country Park in Ecton on your list, where you'll find a lake built on the site of an old drinking water reservoir. Or, to travel back in time to when William the Conqueror ruled, head to Rockingham Castle in Market Harborough for a royally good day out. 

What to know before you go

  • Abington Park Café is open daily from 9am-5pm. Abington Park Museum is open from Thursday-Sunday a varying times depending on the time of year.
  • Toilets are in the south of the park, near the café. You can also find toilets in the Museum, including accessible toilets and baby changing facilities. Wheelchair access is available in the Museum.

Getting there

  • Abington Park is located in the town of Abington, Northampton, which is easy to get to by car via the A4500 or A5095.
  • There is no designated parking area for the park, but there are lots of free or pay and display street parking options nearby.
  • Buses are running throughout the local area, with Abington Park bus stop located near the entrance of the Park.
  • The nearest train station is Northampton, which is a 50-minute walk from the Park. Alternatively, you can catch the bus or get a taxi from the station.

Please follow the latest government guidelines if travelling by public transport.

Government Guidelines

Location

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