Walton Hall Gardens was originally part of a much larger country estate purchased in 1812 by the Greenall family, famous for their success in the brewing industry. The Hall itself was built in Elizabethan style during the 1830s, designed by Edmund Sharpe of Lancaster, who later became famous for the Gothic revival in architecture.
The Estate was bought by Warrington Borough Council in 1941 and has been enjoyed as a park since 1945.
Today it is the ideal place for a family day out with spacious lawns, picnic areas, play area, children's zoo, heritage centre and outdoor games. The mature parkland and ornamental gardens remain beautiful throughout the year with trees and shrubs from all over the world.
Home to much more than just our busy squirrels, you may even be lucky enough to spot a weasel. More easily seen are woodland birds such as nuthatches, tree creepers and woodpeckers. Evening visitors include bats, foxes and owls.
If you enjoy country walks you'll find the gardens an ideal starting point. Footpaths are waymarked to local beauty spots such as Hill Cliffe, Appleton Reservoir and the Bridgewater Canal. Those wishing to explore further will find OS Explorer maps 275 and 276 useful. The rangers lead regular walks throughout the year.
One of the park's most popular attractions, the children's zoo, boasts a colourful array of birds and animals. You can visit any day of the year and entry is free of charge. Christmas Day and New Year's Day open from 10.30am to 12noon only. Feeding time is 2pm in summer and 1pm in winter.
The 'adopt an animal' scheme has recently been launched with a variety of animals including peacocks and pygmy goats waiting to be adopted. The money raised will all be spent on improvements to the zoo helping to provide better facilities for animals, birds and visitors. For more information and an application form please visit the animal adoption scheme page. The rangers are always on hand to answer questions and are happy to give advice on animals. We run "keeper for the day" events if you would like to find out what the children's zoo is all about.
Heritage centre, gift shop & coffee shop
Situated in the old stable yard, the heritage centre contains a fascinating historical exhibition showing life as it used to be on the Walton Estate in the nineteenth and early twentieth century. There is also a small Lewis Carroll exhibition tracing the works of this locally born author and his links to Walton Hall, as well as a natural history room with a bird viewing window overlooking our feeding station. Local guides and maps are also available. Gifts and souvenirs, including Alice in Wonderland merchandise are on sale in the shop.
The coffee shop in the heritage yard area, adjacent to the Bridgewater Canal, serves a selection of hot and cold drinks, snacks and confectionery. There are both indoor and outdoor eating areas.
Assistance dogs only in this area please.
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