This is the third post in an occasional series featuring smaller local parks and playgrounds which you may have passed by, but never visited. So far, we’ve covered Rounton Park, Bow and Victory Park, Stratford.
If you live nearby, these are the places you go to once, twice, three times a day sometimes when you need to get your toddler out into the fresh air – to use up some energy or get a change in mood. You really depend on them.
This time, we’re obeying the urge we’ve had for some time to investigate the rather fantastic slide that can be glimpsed to the right, near the Greenway, from the upper deck of the bus on the way to Stratford shortly after Bow Flyover.
A quick look at a map tells us this is Abbey Lane Park, and we set off to investigate. We visit after an unfortunate combination of rain through the night (bringing mud) and a period of hot weather during the daytime (meaning there’s quite a lot of litter), but that wasn’t enough to put us off.
You can access the park from the road or from the greenway (there’s even a ramp down for pushchairs). The slide is just as exciting as we’d hoped – this one is probably for older children although more adventurous toddlers might enjoy it with a little help. If not, there’s a smaller version for smaller people.
Another exciting feature is this slide that runs from the bank of the greenway down. You might not be able to see them that well but there are climbing hand/foot holds and a rope to climb up. There’s also a few pieces of fitness equipment that my toddler enjoyed just as much as the playground equipment.
While we were there, a little game of cricket was being played, and we got exactly what we wanted – an hour or so outdoors in new, but close, surroundings.
This local park is handy for…
Well, I’m not sure really, but you can extend the adventure and visit two playgrounds in the process, stopping for refreshments on the way. To do this:
- Return to the Greenway (stopping to pick blackberries as per Rachel’s advice).
- Head along the Greenway in a south-easterly direction (away from Stratford High Street).
- Take the new path to the right just before Abbey Creek when you see the large metal piece of machinery, spray-painted in bright colours. We thought this looked like a snail.
- Follow the path which runs alongside Channelsea River – you won’t feel like you’re only ten minutes from Tesco!
- Follow the path into Three Mills to the cafe, where there are hearty home-made sandwiches and, on the day we visited, a lovely bread and butter pudding available to buy.
- Go back on yourselves to the Wild Kingdom play area which the last time we visited had a trampoline, table tennis tables as well as other climbing equipment up over the grassy bank.