Haigh Woodland Park

Haigh, Wigan

Country park with extensive adventure playgrounds and a food courtyard


image of haigh-woodland-park

Get there

Public transport: access on busy, pathless country roads


Haigh Country Park is the grounds of an old house, The house is/was a hotel, looks closed—anyway you turn it, you’re not there for the house. Meanwhile the large grounds are on foothills that rise to the South Pennines. Must have been a good place to live, above the churn of Wigan and Bolton, yet low enough not to take moorland weather. But it means the park has no focal points like lakes, or features beyond a slope. This hasn’t stopped development, because this is a model greenbelt area—suburban houses, open fields, violent A‐roads. So Haigh has built it’s own features. They’re bewildering—every grab a park could have short of being an upscale funfair. Not one but many adventure playgrounds, from kid’s swings to a teen‐adult rope‐walk. Golf? A crazy golf course then two short‐hole greens. A three‐section walled garden that sells produce (how did that get there?). For some reason, an ornamental pond. A miniature railway. Not one cafe, but a courtyard of outlets from tea to meals. For unloading the kids, Haigh Country Park is perfect, and Aged‐P will love the courtyard. Downsides? Not much distance, and noisy, for prams and wheelchairs. Also, unless you haul your crew along the History Trail, no grit.