Welcome to the Friends of Rowntree Park!

The Friends of Rowntree Park is a charity which seeks to promote the well-being of the Park and its users. The Friends work to support increased and diverse uses of the park, by all sections of the community. The Friends are consulted by the council on developments and changes within the park and suggest improvements ourselves. We do not manage the park overall, but we do work very closely with council staff (including the Environment and Community Officers). We also run our own activities, which currently include events for our Younger Friends and a volunteer gardeners group (for information gardening@rowntreepark.org.uk).

Previous projects  are many and have included the Ark in the Park, ParkActive, oral history project, the Lost Words Poetry Project and many more.

We have regular Friends’ meetings which include Council staff.

Help us in our work to keep Rowntree Park beautiful and thriving, by joining the Friends of Rowntree Park. Membership is available for a small annual subscription of £5 per household. You can pay online, via our Membership page  or pick up a leaflet, from the Reading Cafe.

As a member, we will send you our updates and newsletters, preferably by email (to save money and trees), or alternatively by post. This will keep you up to date with all developments and activities in the park, and as a Friend, you are part of a local community group that can affect what will happen in your park. Your membership also offers 10% discount on food and drink, at the Reading Cafe, when you produce your membership card. We offer gift memberships for the same price, or a 10-year membership (so you don’t have to remember your subscriptions each year!) for a bargain £40. For any membership queries, contact us on membership@rowntreepark.org.uk

For other information, contact us via email, info@rowntreepark.org.uk Twitter, Instagram or Facebook.

About Rowntree Park

Rowntree Park has a river-side location to the south of the city centre. It was given to the people of York by Rowntree and Company at the close of the First World War as a memorial to all those members of the Company’s staff who lost their lives or suffered during the War. The wrought iron gates at the Terry Avenue entrance were given by the Company in 1954 as a Second World War memorial.

The Park was especially designed to be a public park as well as a recreation ground and was essentially York’s first municipal park. Since it was first laid out, many alterations have been carried out, but the Park survives still in much the same form as it was first conceived. Its facilities are widely used by York residents and visitors to the City alike and it is the setting from time to time for special events. The park is maintained by City of York Council, which has a web page dedicated to Rowntree Park.

The 10-hectare site combines a historical background with a high-quality, multi-functional recreational space. In 2003, a £1.8 million Heritage Lottery funded refurbishment of the park was completed with many historical features returned to their original condition. New features including a performance space and sculpture play trail were also added. The Friends have been working with council staff and volunteers to establish and enhance areas with wildlife potential.

The park also offers a great Reading Cafe, children’s play areas and sporting facilities such as tennis courts, basketball court and skateboarding area.

Because of the low-lying nature of the land, when the Ouse floods, Rowntree Park fills up with water, and Park users have to wait for the Park to drain, partly by gravity (through one-way valves in the flood walls) and partly by pumps. The Friends aim to keep the public aware of this, as much as possible, via their Facebook page.

For information on current events, opening hours etc, see our What’s On page.


12 Comments on “Home”

  1. Harry Evans says:

    Sorry but on the website there is no way to contact anyone
    Please could you tell me an address so I can either ring or talk to you
    I have some questions about things I have been told
    Many thanks

    • cathmortimer says:

      Hi Harry,
      On the website, there are email addresses for the various elements of the Friends’ activities, eg for Young Friends, ParkActive and membership, and contacts for the yarnbombing project, for the Park Rangers etc. If none of these apply to your query, you can try the info@ email address. Hope this helps

  2. Louise Maule says:

    Hi who would I need to contact in regards to the summer fayre?

  3. Gill says:

    Are dogs allowed at Rowntree park ?

  4. stuaert says:

    hello, i am trying to get in contact regards the badminton courts? kind regards staurt

    • cathmortimer says:

      Hi Stuart

      There are no formal badminton courts at the park, although there is plenty of space to mark your own out – assuming that the flood waters go down in the near future!

  5. Tania Beatty says:

    Now then missus Mortimer 😁 is there any information within this website about the crochet & knitting group, like a telephone number or meeting dates? I’ve had a look myself but can’t find any

    • cathmortimer says:

      Hello there! The Crochet Collective runs from a FB site https://www.facebook.com/groups/1575269356067184/about/ which says 2pm the second Sunday of the month. I will nudge the 2x Admins that I know, to see if it is happening – will be the weekend after the bank hol one, in theory.
      A knitting group meets on a Wednesday afternoon in the cafe: we don’t have a contact and the Reading Cafe doesn’t have a “What’s on” page – yet (we are making encouraging noises)

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