Last weekend we got to experience Wicksteed Park and all that it offers. It was a #gifted experience but all reviews and opinions are my own.
Situated in Northamptonshire, I couldn’t decline taking a visit to this underrated park.
History & origin
Wicksteed Park opened in 1921, making it the oldest theme park on UK mainland. Its founder, Charles Wicksteed purchased the land in 1913. His initial goal was to create a model village for the local community, however following World War One and housing reforms, Charles looked to develop a park for people to spend their leisure time.
Wicksteed Park is based in Kettering, Northamptonshire and the large 147 acre ground is a wonderful mix of rides, attractions, beautiful countryside and wildlife. During our weekend I saw many happy faces having family bbqs, a kickabout, cricket playing, picnics, the atmosphere was just great.
There is a family camp site which boasts a modern loo and shower block, and beautiful views over the lake. We tried a night of camping which was a first for and with the Toddler. He really embraced it, a lot of open field for the children to run around in, the showers and toilets were the deal breaker for me so I’m glad they were as described.
Easily accessed, well maintained and a warm shower after a night of camping was lovely.
Aside from the standard rides, a play area and the usual park expectations, there are other options such as Clip n Climb, a bag jump, and a Zip wire on site. We had a brilliant time trying to compete with each other, I lost my nerve a couple of times when it came to letting go but it had been a while! The safety briefing and induction ensured a smooth start and the 55mins of climbing was more than enough. Staff are always on hand throughout the sessions, I found them to be very pleasant.
The Zip Wire was my favourite part of the day. Not having done that for years, it was great to be able to experience the adrenaline again. The staff manning this were again so good, patient and informative with easy instructions.
Alongside those, other activities such Paddle Boarding and Archery are available too. There really is something for everyone.
There are a variety of rides but also a playground with swings, slides, climbing frames etc, which would keep any child happy long after the rides are done.
There is an indoor play area (Wicky’s Play Factory) that charges £1 to wristband holders, it has a an eatery attached too.
Ride tickets are available from £1.25 for a single (most rides require 2/3 tickets)
Wristbands can be purchased online and allow you unlimited access to all rides;
£17 per child, £13.60 per adult or child between 0.9m and 1m. (My only issue was this height requirement, seemed a lot stricter than other theme parks but a minor point)
So if you have a ride junky, wristbands will always work out better especially if you want multiple log flume rides which we did in the scorching heat!
Wicksteed have plenty of places to fill empty tummies and quench thirsty mouths. Cafe, Fastfood, Streetfood, breakfast and an ice cream parlour.
We of course had to have the Fish n Chips from The Oaktree and the Toddler loved the pizza from Wicky’s play factory, it was a generous size.
If you’re looking for ideas this Summer, keep Wicksteed in mind. It makes a good family day out that can cost as little or as lot as you wish. If you want to go on a budget, take a picnic and although there are chargeable rides & activities, there is also a very large play park that is free just like entry. Lovely walks around the lake that cost nothing, easily accessible for pushchairs and wheelchairs.
Overall, definitely worth a visit and no doubt we’ll be returning in the future.