Mary Stevens was the wife of Ernest Stevens. She died aged just 55 and he wanted to leave a long lasting memorial in her honour. What a wonderful memorial it is. His vision was that it would enrich the lives of all, providing “a place of rest for the weary, of happiness for the children and of beauty for everyone”.
I would say that it does just that even though it is now nearly 100 years old. It was actually opened in 1931. The council has recently spent over three pounds million restoring it. The main entrance gates off Heath Road and the War Memorial at the north end of Queen’s Drive are both listed.
Things to do
There is lots and lots to do there for families of all ages. When we were there we saw many of the older children whizzing round the bandstand on roller skates. There were lots of younger ones playing on the swings and roundabouts. Children of all shapes and sizes were feeding the ducks or cycling through the park.
More things to do
There is an action packed programme of events running throughout the year. During the summer and half terms activities take place every day. There is also a big outdoor gym area but even though we were there on two separate occasions we didn’t see anyone using the equipment!
Both times we were in the park there was an ice cream van and I suspect that is probably normal. But we had a delicious lunch in the Coffee Lounge the first time and coffee and cake the second time. Good value and delicious, there is plenty of seating both inside and out. The parking was free too although I guess it will be harder to park in the summer holidays than it was on a dull day in March!
Amanda Ingham 10th April 2019