Manston Park is family friendly green space in Manston. The park comes with lots of sport and physical activity options you can do on your own or with others in groups.
Things to Note
Manston Park has the following on-site or nearby:
- Dog Waste Bins
- Nearby Food & Drink
- Nearby Parking
- Nearby Toilets
- Pushchair Access
- Rubbish Bins
- Wheelchair Access
Manston is a tiny suburb next to Cross Gates in the east of Leeds. It’s about 4 clicks from the city centre of Leeds.
Things to Do
There’s always a dog walker in Manston Park. And more often than not they’ve got a big smile on their face. This friendly bunch take around 10-minutes on average to walk around the park with their pooch.
There’s a newly renovated toddlers and children’s playground that includes some high quality play equipment, including: climbing frames, roundabouts, and sports trail.
Manston Park has 3 top notch hard surface tennis courts located next to the bowling green. These recently got a resurface which means the tennis balls got a nice ping when it comes off it. The courts are fully accessible with wheelchair users able to play.
Do I need to book a tennis court?
It’s free to use the tennis court but you will need to book a court space on the LTA clubspark website.
Try Tag Rugby is a mixed men and women’s minimal contact version of rugby. There’s no slide tackles or rucks involved playing this game. Expect some running and weaving, and of course plenty of tagging. Try Tag Rugby at Manston Park.
A series of pull up bars and abs workout stations are available for the public to use.
A junior and adult sized football pitch with fixed goals is useable from dawn to dusk.
Manston Park Bowling club play their games on the well maintained crown bowling green in Manston Park. You don’t need to have any previous experience to have a go at bowls. Just turn up in flat shows and you can and use the bowling green.
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Breeze in the Park
Breeze in the park makes a pit stop at Manston Park. These guys usually bring a wide range of fun activities to take part in. Including arts; inflatables; fun fair games; interactive play systems; and of course some food! Checkout the latest info over at Breeze.
Brass Band Concerts
As part of the Summer Bands in Leeds Park series there is regularly a big band live performance on a Sunday in Manston Park, Crossgates. Expect a programme of jazz favourites from bands like A Stroke of Genius Big Band.
If you didn’t guess already Manston Park is originally named after the suburb of Manston. Original eh! The Barnbow pub (previously the Manston Hotel) is a historically significant building to the east of the park. This building was part of the production line to produce more munitions shells in the First World War after Germany declared war on Britain. It was known as the location of the best shell filling factory!
Barnbow Munitions Factory
After the declaration of war with Germany in August 1914, there was an urgent need for arms and munitions. A governing board was organized to oversee construction on the new site, which was earmarked for Barnbow, situated between Cross Gates and Garforth.
Railway tracks were laid directly into the factory complex to transport materials in and transport goods out. Platforms of over 800 feet were added to the nearby railway station to transport workers to and from work at the site. Massive factory buildings were quickly built, power lines were erected to bring power, and shell filling operations began in December 1915.
The Barnbow site covered 200 acres. And due to its size and workload needed approximately 16,000 employees.
The Barnhow Lasses
As the second world war progressed, the Barnbow shell factory went through a significant staffing change. The number of men on the site dwindled (due to the death rate on the war front), and the workforce ended up with around 93 per cent women and girls (affectionately known as “The Barnbow Lasses”).
Workers earnings averaged £3 per week, though through a bonus scheme women handling the explosives could take home between £10-£12 per week. Thirty-eight trains per day were run, transporting the workers to and from work.
Explosion in Barnbow Munition Factory
Tuesday 5 December 1916, at 10pm several hundred women and girls had just started their shift at the factory. Four and a half inch shells were being filled and packed. There were 170 girls working in Room 42. The role of this room was to take a fully loaded shell and add a fuse by hand and cap it with a machine.
There was an explosion at 10:27pm in room 42 killing 35 women, and maiming and injuring many more. Many of the dead were only identifiable by the identity discs they wore around their necks. Production was stopped only for a short while, and once the bodies were removed other girls were volunteering to work in Room 42.
Play Park Renovation
In 2022 the park received a big makeover with a range of new play equipment, including: state of the art climbing frame and inclusive roundabout; a toddler friendly area with swings.
Parents and community groups in the Crossgates area were fundamental in progressing this wonderful development for children and their play opportunities in the park.
Dog waste and rubbish bins are available in the park.
Food and Drink
With the green space such a good one for families it would be silly if we didn’t recommend bringing a picnic to enjoy in-between the fun things to do in Manston Park.
Food & Drink
Located on the edge of the park is the The Barnbow – a family friendly pub that loves to dish up slow cooked roasts and other pub classics. For those that want to stretch their legs a little more go and discover the Nawaz Indian Restaurant. It’s an Indian that serves up brilliant dishes with excellent service at reasonable prices.
There are 25-car parking spaces on-site in Manston Park.
The park is fully accessible by wheelchair and pushchair.
How to Get To Manston Park
Accessible by bus number 40 and 56 on Penda’s Way and Church Lane. Both bus stops are 5-minutes away from the park.
It’s a 20-minute taxi journey from the centre of Leeds to Manston Park.
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