The War Memorial Park

This historic Georgian park, has an attractive parkland landscape of mature trees and garden features, to walk and relax in (see below for further information on the park's history and development). It also has a bandstand, play area, BMX/skate park, sports pitches and all weather tennis courts run by Totally Tennis.

Following an award from the National Lottery Fund, the park was refurbished in 2001 to include a woodland walk and aviary.  Due to its high standards, War Memorial Park has been awarded the Green Flag Award for 2014-2015.  A management plan is being produced which guides the future management of the park.

For more information about the history of The War Memorial Park, please take a look at The War Memorial Park - A History webpage.


Bandstand

Bandstand

Location and access

The park is a short walk from the town area or from a bus stop in Hackwood Road. Alternatively, there are subways to the park from the residential areas of Cranborne and Black Dam, with pathways from Riverdene and Eastrop estates.

Free parking is available at Crossborough Hill, which also has disabled parking bays. There is a disabled toilet on site at the John Arlott Pavilion and pathways throughout the park are suitable for buggies and wheelchair users.

Click on this link for a copy of the location map.

Conservation in the park

The bank between the Costello School boundary and the playing fields will be left to flower and cut once in late summer to encourage wider biodiversity, to provide a useful habitat for butterflies and moths, food for birds and cover for small mammals.

The Basingstoke Field Society has kindly agreed to carry out wildflower surveys of the area and compile records on behalf of the council. This data will be used to monitor and enhance the site's biodiversity value.

Art in the park

Ring of Light by Peter Freeman
To commemorate Queen Elizabeth II's Golden Jubilee, lighting artist, Peter Freeman, was commissioned to create a 'ring of light' in the War Memorial Park in 2002. This takes the form of a series of custom-made lights, which highlight the canopies of a selection of trees.

Six Stone Plaques – Alec Peever
Installed in 1995, these sandstone wedges were produced by Oxfordshire-based stonecutter, Alec Peever. Set into the walkways of the park, each is inscribed with a phrase from a poem. The artist was inspired by the 17th Century passion for viewing the landscape through a hand-held looking glass, known as a Claude Glass.

War Memorial Park tree trail

The park is a wonderful area to walk and take in the pleasant surroundings. There are three self-guided walks which can be downloaded from the walking section on this website. Each guide includes a walk summary, step by step directions and interesting information about the features that you will pass along the way.

Pick up a leaflet from the council offices or the Discovery Centre and follow the trail or please see our section on self guided walks for this and other trails and walks in the borough.

Events in the park

The park hosts a variety of events throughout the year, some are organised by the council, or community organisations. Other events are jointly organised between the council and charitable organisations such as the Thornycroft Society.

Indeed the event year starts in May with the popular Transport Festival which is organised by volunteers from the Thornycroft Society and with assistance from Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council.

The season ends in November with the Mayor's Charity Firework Fiesta. This annual event, hosted by the council, includes fireworks, a fun fair and food and beverage tents. All proceeds from entrance and pitch fees are given to the Mayor's chosen local charities.

The size and layout of the park is ideal for the staging of large scale events.  If you would like information on using the park for your own events, please contact a member of the events team by emailing events@basingstoke.gov.uk or by phoning 01256 845676.

Sport and recreation

Sports Pitches - there are three football pitches available for hire.  For booking information please see our
Totally Tennis - from novices to world-ranked players, for both juniors and adults,Totally Tennis offers programmes to suit individual needs and budgets.  The coaches are qualified with the Lawn Tennis Association and hold full licences. Between them, they have coached from beginner to national standard and above.  Following investment from the Lawn Tennis Association and Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council, the facilities are among the best in the area.  The four indoor courts at the War Memorial Park are of a revolutionary design, providing an unrivalled level of natural light quality and superb acoustics. The four outdoor courts at this site are floodlit for year-round use.  A further six outdoor courts are run at Stratton Park in the western area of Basingstoke.

Outdoor gym equipment - with the help of developer contributions, the council has been able to install three pieces of outdoor gym equipment; a bike, cross trainer and resistance equipment for the upper body, offering cardiovascular, tonal and wellbeing exercises.  The equipment can be found near the children's play area and is free to use!

National cycle network - route 23 of the National Cycle Network runs through the park along with other off road routes. Find out more about cycling in the borough.