Top English Heritage family days out near Sheffield
Looking for English Heritage fun family days out near Sheffield? Here’s 6 of the best including castles, lovely playgrounds, history and stunning gardens.
“The imposing ruins of Peveril Castle stand high above the pretty village of Castleton in the heart of Derbyshire’s Peak District. Mentioned in the Domesday survey, Peveril Castle is one of England’s earliest Norman fortresses. The keep was built by Henry II in 1176.
A climb to the castle at the top of the hill to enjoy the breathtaking views over the Hope Valley is a highlight of a family day out in Castleton. Explore the remains of the keep including the garderobe (medieval lavatory)!”.
A visit to this castle really makes a lovely day out in Castleton. We loved the climb up there with lots of rests for photos to take in the views of the beautiful landscape. You really do get to see some fantastic countryside views. Looking inside the castle ruins were fun and Eric enjoyed it, you can easily make it magical and tell a story or two.
- Parking at visitors centre
- Cold drinks & ice creams from visitors centre, but no cafe
- Picnic areas available
- Gift shop
- Toilets with disabled and baby change
- Activity sheets and outdoor games available
Discover the stately ruins of the birthplace of Bess of Hardwick, one of the richest and most remarkable women of Elizabethan England. Ascend through four floors to enjoy spectacular views over the Derbyshire countryside and Hardwick New Hall. Take your time and admire the spectacular decorative plasterwork on your way up. Then learn more in our fascinating exhibition and visit Bess’s New Hall next door.
- There are 2 exhibitions in the Old Hall centre
- Parking is free for NT and EH members or £3
- National Trust stable yard restaurant
- Picnic area, shop, toilets available
- Dogs on leads allowed
- Audio tours available
- Pram and family friendly
With spectacular views over Derbyshire, the fairy-tale Stuart mansion, Bolsover Castle, was designed to entertain and impress. Its reputation for revelry lives on as we now entertain you and your family. Wander the lavish rooms of the Little Castle, explore the romantic ruined terrace range, and delight in the views from the wall walk. Start your visit in the exhibition in the Riding House then run wild in extensive grounds (and fun play area). Plus, at Christmas there’s the fantastic events such as Audience with Father Christmas.
One of our community group members went and said., “the children (3y and 15m) absolutely loved wandering round the grounds and exploring all of the hidden rooms with their nooks and crannies”.
And Debbie had a wonderful day out too… “Lovely wooden castle themed play area with baby swings and springy horses for smalls as well as bigger kid stuff. Majority of the grounds can be done with a pram and the stairs to the castle are easy to get up with a stroller. If you had an umbrella lightweight stroller you could carry it to top folded or stash it at bottom. We used the sling today though.
My only advice is accept the audio guide. We just wanted to pootle round and read about the place but there was no info or plaques in the rooms of the castle everything was explained on the audio guides. I will be going back again to listen next time as we just spent the day making up our own stories about the paintings and rooms”.
- Free parking
- Large cafe and picnic area
- Shop and exhibition
- Toilets, disabled and baby change
- Small, circular sheltered walled garden with seasonal 1630s period planting around the edges and a gentle Venus fountain in the centre
- Children and adult audio tours
- Wooden adventure playground
The best-preserved remains of a Cistercian abbey west cloister range in England, dating mainly from around 1170. Incorporated into part of a 17th century and later mansion, set in Rufford Country Park. The country park also has a lake and a meadow, gardens, woodland, nature trails and a play area for children & a new adventure playground opened 2018.
Entry is FREE for everyone and there is a charge for car parking (EH members, too).
Hayley from our community group loves Rufford abbey and goes often. She said, “There’s so much more to this place and for £3:50 parking its a bargain! Lovely grounds to explore, maze, the Abbey, beautiful courtyard which has more places to eat, kiosk and for the summer a beach area. Then there’s the mill you can walk around which was lovely and shaded as it was really warm when we went.
We love it here and go back again and again and always spent at least 6 hours or more. Top tip- get there early to get a car parking space as I once went around lunch time to meet my parents and we couldn’t get in as car park was full”.
- Car park not managed by NT or EH
- Abbey ruins not accessible
- Country park facilities include toilets, a café, a restaurant, a deli, a craft and gift shop, and an outdoor living shop
- Lake and a meadow, gardens, woodland, nature trails and a play area for children
Coinsbrough Castle, Castle Hill, Conisbrough, Doncaster, South Yorkshire, DN12 3BU
This romantic castle with stunning views over Conisbrough, inspired Sir Walter Scott’s Ivanhoe and still fires the imagination today. With floors and roof restored in the lofty circular keep you can fully appreciate the magnificence of the original 12th century building. Delve into the medieval world of Lord and Lady de Warenne, and enjoy the grassy areas around the castle walls for games and picnics.
- Private car parking
- Train station nearby
- Picnic areas and small shop selling drinks and snacks
- Gift shop, exhibition and gardens
- Activity sheets, a book box, activity sheets, reconstruction drawings and object handling for children
Brodsworth Hall and Gardens, Doncaster, South Yorkshire, follow brown signs
Catch a glimpse of Victorian life at this ‘conserved as found’ country house. Brodsworth Hall was built and the pleasure gardens laid out, in the 1860s, as an up-to-date new home for the The llusson family and their servants. It survived with remarkably few changes until taken on by English Heritage in 1990.
The gardens have been restored, and the faded and worn interiors gently conserved, telling the story of the changing fortunes of the people who lived and worked here. Wander the many rooms of the house, roam the gorgeous gardens, stop for tea in the tearoom, and discover the recently restored game larder.
- Free car park
- Garden Tearooms and tea terrace, picnic areas available
- Museum, visitors shop and exhibition
- Extensive gardens, statue walks, the fern dell grotto and the beautiful wild rose dell
More fun English Heritage family days out in Yorkshire to consider:
- Roche Abbey, Maltby, Rotherham, South Yorkshire, S66 8NW. Gardens, historical gatehouse and ruins.
- Clifford’s Tower, York. Tours, wall walks and views.
- Whitby Abbey, North Yorkshire, YO22 4JT. Ruins, cliff top views, audio tour, Dracula history and more.
- Scarborough Castle, North Yorkshire, YO11 1HY. Dramatic coastline views, gatehouse walk, ruins, wildlife in 16 acres, coffee shop and exhibition.