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a grand day out

middleton park

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Middelton Park is a hidden gem. It is one of Leeds’ great parks, but often unvisited by non-locals. We take in a bit of nature and stroll round the park, then check out Middleton Elderly Aid to meet older people who love this area of South Leeds. 

Where to Go                 

Middleton Park
Town Street, Middleton, Leeds, LS10 3SH.


Website         side/major-parks/middleton-park



Free entry



Café, visitor centre, toilet, bowling green, children’s playground.


Getting There                 

There are various entrances to Middleton Park. Get the 12, 13 or 13a from the Corn Exchange to Middelton Park Circus and walk from there. It’s about a 10-minute-walk to the café and lake. Or catch the number 2 that heads up to Beeston Park Ring Road. This bus drops you off on the south side of the park, which is a little further to the café. The bus journey should take 30 mins.


Opening Times

Open to the public all the year round. Facilities open:
Monday to Friday
10.15am - 2.15pm

Saturday to Sunday 9am - 3pm

Middleton Park is one of the great Leeds parks. It’s very large and has bowling green, a café and a lake. It’s well-used by locals but not necessarily a go-to location for people who live further afield. However it is very much worth a visit. We found it quieter and more friendly than similar places like Round- hay Park. Middleton Park is a hidden gem – go and check it out for yourself


The buses to Middleton go from the city centre and are very frequent. We caught the no. 12 bus from outside the Corn Exchange and got off at Middleton Circus. This is a parade of shops and there’s a Texaco garage. The park is a 5 – 10 minute walk from here. Head down St. Philips Avenue to get to the park. We asked a local for directions – everyone was very friendly!

THE basics


Middleton Elderly Aid offers support and activities to older people in the area. It’s a well-loved service, well used by older people in Middleton. Howard says, “It is the most wonderful place that Middleton’s ever had in 60 years.” We are welcomed into MEA at lunchtime and find it packed with older people enjoying a cheap lunch. “Better than cooking at home!” laughs Mavis, 82, who lives on her own. Mavis gets a chance to chat to others and help out with whatever she can.

Linda has been volunteering at MEA for about 9 years. She does a bit of everything - helping out in the charity shop on the access bus and 

doing odd jobs. “Middleton is the best place I’ve ever lived,” she says. “They do a lot for the elderly: day trips, parties, turns. When we visited Linda was painting a fence. “It’s my therapy!” she says. Mavis gets involved with whatever is going on. There are walks twice a week, often to the park. “It’s glorious,” she says.

Contact MEA on 0113 2721050 or

our visit
byAnne Chitty and Tom Bailey

On entering Middleton Park, we were struck by how beautiful it was. It was a glorious, sunny day and we walked down towards the lake, delighted to see swans and other wildlife. The café is run by a very welcoming team. There’s a small visitor centre and accessible toilets. We bought a very reasonably-priced coffee and sat outside to take in the sunshine. Tables were packed with locals of all ages. It’s clearly a go-to spot for the community of Middleton.
Howard, 90, was very enthusiastic about the park. He lives very close by. “It’s wonderful,” he tells us. He is fond of the swans too and tells us how they came to be there. “One day, a swan came from down in Stourton. It came on its own. You could see this lovely swan swimming along with seven or eight little ones behind it. What a beautiful picture that was. People came from all over to see it. It didn’t last long but we all liked it so much we made sure we got some more.”
Howard has been in Middleton for many years and remembers what the park used to be like. “During the war it used to be absolutely packed with children paddling,” he recalls. “At the other end there were paddle boats.” Ronald chips in: “I remember the paddleboats – I went on them!” He is similarly keen on the park. “I like it for its open-ness. I go walking in the woods. There used to be golfing there but it’s gone now.” Howard fills us in on the golf course: “That land has now been incorporated into Middleton Park, so it’s probably twice as big as it used to be.”
There are other attractions in Middleton too. Keith, 80, is fond of Middelton Railway, open at weekends. “I started trainspotting when I was 12,” says Keith. Ronald is a bowls enthusiast: “There’s a bowls club up there that I’ve used in the past.” Howard mentions the galas and brass bands that occur in the park sometimes. Lily has been in the same house since 1959 “I got married in the Middleton Arms,” she tells us. “It only cost us about $25 for the whole do!” The Arms is no longer there - it’s an Aldi now
- but it still looms large in the memories of the older people we met.
None of the Shine team had been to Middleton Park before. We all left with a determination to return, possibly next time taking in a visit to the Railway too.


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