Sometimes just trying out a new park is entertainment enough to keep the children happy! There are plenty of parks and open spaces on our doorsteps. Here are a few suggestions - now we just need to pray for good weather!
We asked our Facebook followers if they had found a new outdoor space recently - and have added their recommendations below:
Managed by the National Trust, Clent Hills offers the miles of way marked footpaths, bridleways and easy access trails offering breath-taking panoramic views over the Cotswolds, Shropshire Hills and Welsh borders. There's also an enclosed natural play area near the Nimmings Wood car park and a cafe.
Riverside Meadows, Stourport
A beautiful spot by the river Severn. Children's play area, picnic spot, paddling pool and skate park. Nearby Playland in Stourport has a putting green, crazy golf and other amusements by the river (take your purse with you!). Enjoy a boat trip along the river with the Stourport Steamer Company - under 5's are free.
Riverside Meadows, Bewdley
Riverside walks plus enclosed play area and paddling pool (accessed from the Northwood Lane area)
Brinton Park, Kidderminster DY11 6QU
Large park with plenty of open space, plus play ground, tennis courts, skate park and paddling pool. There's also a fabulous Splashpad which is open in the warmer months.
St George's Park, Kidderminster Radford Avenue.
Enclosed play area and paddling pool plus a tennis courts and a five aside area.
Cookley Playing Fields DY10 2RH
This small park, surrounded by countryside, has a BMX track, skate park, a playground and football and cricket pitch. Nice location near the canal.
Springfield Park, Broadwaters
A good all-rounder with a children's playground, teenage area and multi-use games area. Pond with fishing rights for local residents.
Wyre Forest Discovery Centre, DY14 9XQ, near Bewdley
There are walking trails (short routes for youngsters) and a family cycle route, plus visitor centre, cafe and a children's playground. The Discovery Centre sometimes runs craft activities during the school holidays. You need to pay to park.
Trimpley Reservoir, near Bewdley
Trimpley Reservoir is owned and run by Severn Trent Water. Enjoy walks around the beautiful pools (which are used to supply water to the Elan Valley Aquaduct) You can park on the carpark near Eymore Wood and walk down the road and then down the steep path to the reservoir, or walk there from Arley. There’s a sailing club on site if you enjoy watersports. There are no toilet facilities here.
"Never been to Trimpley before but we loved it!" Gemma Calvert
Lido Park Droitwich, WR9 8AA
If we have a hot summer, this is the place to go! This park houses the famous outdoor heated swimming pool. The park is free but you need to pay to use the lido.
Gheluvelt Park, Worcester WR3 7AA
Recently redeveloped this park now has a new play area and a new water play feature. The Splashpad is open from 11:00 - 18:00 every day in the summer months. There's also a cafe too.
Rifle Range SSSI (Site of scientific interest)
Situated in the Wyre Forest district. Park just off the Blackstone Picnic Site near Bewdle, this is a lovely place to walk. See if you can spot a common lizard or a green woodpecker there! It used to be used as a firing range in the 19th century and you can still see evidence there today.
"We have been to Rifle Range Nature Reserve. We had done the pledge plod etc but we didn't realise we could access it within a few minutes’ walk from our house and walk to see the animals at safari park!" Laura-Jo Mcconnell
Severn Valley Country Park
In the peaceful, scenic valley of the River Severn lies the Green Flag award-winning
Severn Valley Country Park. 126 acres of beautiful countryside and wonderful views, spanning both sides of the River Severn. Spot the steam from the engines of the Severn Valley Railway as they chug past. There's a natural play area along with picnic benches. Treat yourself to an ice cream from the tea shop. Follow one of the waymarked trails or enjoy the Ranger-lead activities for children which take place on Wednesdays and Fridays during the school holidays.
Telford Town Park TF3 4HD
A bit further afield, but worth a trip for a day out. There are pedalos, sandpits, cycle trails, a train and fantastic playgrounds for different age groups. In addition, it's home to magical Wonderland (small theme park) where nursery rhymes come to life (NB you have to pay to enter Wonderland).
Mary Steven Park, Stourbridge DY8
Large park with children's playground and new outdoor gym. There's lots of open space for picnics, tennis courts, goal posts, a lake to wander around, plus a water feature for children to play in during the summer months. It's recently been redeveloped, so the lake area is much nicer to walk around. There's also now a Coffee Shop which sells light snacks and drinks.
Saltwells Local Nature Reserve
A site of national geological interest, the reserve is protected by law. You can even hunt for fossils in the banks of scree. Recently redeveloped, there is a walking trail through woodland where children can spot sculptures along the way. Small parking area (free) and it's next to the Saltwells Inn with a beer garden. Park of the UNESCO Geopark.
Corngreaves Nature Reserve is next to Haden Hill Park (another great place to explore, with Haden Hill House ‘museum’ on site ). Rich in flora and fauna, there’s a stream running through the reserve so a great place to spot wildlife.
"We discovered Corngreaves Nature Reserve just down the road from us and also a lovely green space near off the canal near Makro, Halesowen!" Clare Benson
Sandwell Valley Country Park
The Country Park lies in the heart of West Bromwich and can be found just off Junction 1 of the M5 motorway. It is just 10 minutes walk from West Bromwich town centre and is open throughout the year. Nearby Dartmouth Park has a brilliant wooden play area, high ropes course, and bike 'pump' track with bumps to ride over. You can also cycle around the nearby reservoir, or visit the Sandwell Park Farm.
Uffmoor Wood is 4.2 kilometer loop trail located near Halesowen. It's cared for by the Woodland Trust and is brimming with wildlife! There is a car park and way marked trails.
"We love Uffmoor Woods! So beautiful there" Amy Hart
Waseley Hills Country Park B45 9AT
Open hillside, with two waymarked trails. There is a small playground and the Windmill cafe selling hot and cold drinks, ice cream, sausage sandwiches and even dog treats. Try the popular orienteering course; a fun map game for families.
Lickey Hills Rednal B45 8ER
Lovely elevated park with stunning views, surrounded by pine trees. Great adventure playground with a zipslide, 3 walking trails and a visitors centre with a lovely cafe. Ranger led activities are held during the school holidays.
Sanders Park, Bromsgrove Kidderminster Road, Bromsgrove
This is a lovely large park with a great children's playground. It has a skate park, tennis courts, and multi purpose games area. There's a cafe too. Nice place to take the bikes. The council run a programme of events throughout the year in the bandstand area.
Baggeridge Country Park Gospel End DY3 4HB
Great adventure playground with zip slide and sandpits. Large open space, picnic areas, and lake for pond dipping. There's also a miniature railway which runs on selected Sundays and Bank Holidays. Rangers host activities during holidays.
Editor of Raring2go! Kidderminster & Stourbridge since 2008. Local font of knowledge. Mother of two and wife of one.