Bit chillier now but we’re still getting plenty of sunshine so a great time to catch some lovely Autumn colours. Rowntree Park in York is starting to look good and I know
OK, so sunshine would have been great but it was so atmospheric with the abbey ruins looming out of the murk!
Park at the West Gate entrance and this is where you may need someone to help, go to the lodge at the gates and they will show you what to do: they open the gates so you can drive in and park and they bring the scooter to you. (Presumably you could also leave your car in the car park which has blue Badge spaces).
The paths are lovely and smooth and the setting is magnificent. We would have explored further if the weather had been better as the grounds are extensive. Following the main path, you eventually come to the lake at the Studley Royal end – I was looking forward to going along by the lake but at the lodge house here they said you can’t take the scooters along there as they aren’t insured.
You can go through the gates and visit the tea-rooms just outside them which also have outside seating. There are various accessible loos in the grounds but I’m not sure if any are big enough to take the scooter so that could be slightly problematic.
They are really fabulous scooters – substantial without being too huge and really easy to use (this is compared to the ones at Roundhay Park).
To book or enquire ring: 01765 608888.
I definitely fancy going back in warmer weather!
Rowntree Park is always lovely but particularly so in Autumn and just fabulous right now! In Spring it has daffodils and ducklings; there is a ‘reading-café’ which is accessible, a children’s play area and tennis club and you can access the river walkways with their viewing points and the Millennium footbridge over the River Ouse. Parking is reached via Terry Avenue.
The paths are smooth so the whole place is eminently scootable as are the paths by the river. Look out for the flood levels on the dove cote (itself a memorial to Rowntree’s workers who died in WW1) – the one from 2000 is way above your head!
The drawback is that the park does flood so is sometimes closed while levels recede and the place dries out a bit. Also the large amount of geese (or rather their droppings) do mean you can’t just sit anywhere on the grass but there are plenty of benches.
For more information see the council’s page on the park: https://www.york.gov.uk/directory_record/376/rowntree_park and DisabledGo has their usual rather unuser-friendly entry on the café: http://www.disabledgo.com/access-guide/city-of-york-council/rowntree-park-reading-cafe-2
The autumn colours seem to be particularly fabulous this year and our determination to get out and see them took us to Roundhay Park.
We had borrowed scooters here before but they have changed where you collect them – now it is from the shop at Tropical World. They take your details and show you how the scooter works. There is a slight snag though if you were visiting on your own – how would you get into Tropical World to collect your scooter? At Temple Newsham, for example, they bring the scooter to your car. I suppose not everywhere can do that but it’s something to bear in mind – you need to be able to get to the collection point or have someone with you who can collect the scooter for you.
Anyway, once on the scooter (and they are very high – more so than last time, it was a struggle to get on!) we visited the Alhambra Gardens over the road then headed for the park proper and the colours were absolutely magnificent! So glad we went!
The scooters cope with uneven terrain really well but go rather fast when you’re heading downhill and I found it a little awkward keeping the lever in the ‘on’ position but we were out for a good hour and a half, so it can’t have been that bad! According to the council website you need a Radar key for the toilets and beware when looking up the number to ring for booking – the one on the park’s own website is wrong, it’s the one on the council website that is right: 0113 2370754. There is a café at Tropical World and at The Mansion and another by the Waterloo Lake. The booking process was easy once I had the right number, staff were pleasant, the park is wonderful and I thoroughly recommend a visit!