Days Out | Graves Park, Sheffield

Image of a young girl and her father stood at the side of a large blue bear statue that is decorated with painted flowers and is part of the charity Sheffield bear hunt. Alongside the image is a title that reads 'Days Out, Graves Park, Sheffield, S8 8LL, www.chatterfox.co.uk'

Graves Park was our first destination on our mission to complete the Sheffield Bear Hunt. The bear hunt is a charity event in which individually designed bears are placed around the city. You can sign up on the website to track your progress or collect a paper trail map from various places. We chose Graves Park as our first stop as it has so much more to offer than just bears.

Graves Park Animal Farm

One of the key things that attracted me to Graves Park was the Animal Farm that is located there. It's a small farm with large animals such as goats, llamas, donkeys, horses and pigs as well as smaller animals like rabbits, hens, owls, guinea pigs and ferrets. There is a small shop onsite selling refreshments and you can purchase bags of animal feed for £1. You aren't able to feed all of animals but there are clear signs indicating if you cannot feed an animal. The animals are very sociable and love to get close enough for you to stroke them- a word of warning though- the goats are very feisty and one of them ripped the bag of food right from my hand! 

Image of a young girl hand feeding a black llama/alpaca some green food pellets at Graves Park Animal Farm

The Farm is free to visit though there are some paid for rides within the farm. I recommend the mini quad bikes, Iris loved zooming around the small track. There are some small play houses dotted around the farm that children are free to play in and there is a huge tractor that children can sit in and pretend to drive. 

Image of a young girl playing on a large red farm tractor that is stationery and used as play equipment atat Graves Park Animal Farm.

The farm runs on donations so throwing your spare change into one of the donation boxes can make a big difference to a place like this.

From a Covid 19 perspective it's a very hands on place but there are plenty of hand sanitising stations around the animal enclosures and a hand washing station with plenty of sinks, soap and drying facilities in the main barn. It is the only place that I've seen using disinfecting spray in public areas such as benches.  At present you don't need to book in advance to visit the farm though they are still monitoring visitors numbers and advise that you maybe asked to wait outside if the farm is at capacity. There aren't any toilets within the farm but there are public toilets located near the Rose Garden Café.

Attractions at Graves Park

On the day we visited Graves Park there was a funfair set up just outside the Farm Park. We didn't enter the funfair but noticed it was ran in a very clever and affordable way. The day was divided into 3, 3 hourly sessions and you chose a timeslot, paid £10 for a wristband and then could ride as much as you want for 3 hours! This seems like fantastic value for money and explains why the queue was so large. I think the funfair tours local outdoor venues offering the wristband system, search Thunder Theme Park for more information. 

Image of a young girl wearing a tie dye t shirt and black leggings sliding down a bright pink and yellow inflatable slide.

Outside the funfair was a small land train that did a small circle around some of the park. It didn't go very far but it only cost £2 per person and it was a jolly little trip. Next to where you embark/disembark from the land train is an inflatable slide. This cost £3 for 10 minutes and it was really good. Iris got a little frightened when she was at the top as some of the bigger kids were being over zealous and doing front flips onto the slide. The staff member was brilliant at enforcing safety and making sure that all the children had a go. Once she'd helped Iris go down the first time there was no stopping her. 

The Play Area at Graves Park

After finishing on the inflatable slide we headed to the playground. The playground here has equipment for all ages. There are plenty of large and small climbing frames of various difficulties, zip lines, swings, slides and roundabouts. Iris's favourite piece of equipment was the sunken trampoline. There were lots of kids wanting to play on this and they all did brilliantly taking turns. There is a sand play area but there wasn't any buckets to use on the pulleys, I'm assuming that's a Covid precaution, despite this we were really impressed with the play area. 

Image of a sunken trampoline in Graves Park Play area. A young girl is mid-jump suspended in the air above the trampoline.

The Rose Garden Cafe at Graves Park 


Having Coeliac disease has made eating out an anxiety inducing nightmare. It's hard to trust someone with your health and I've come across people that talk about gluten free but it's clear they have no knowledge about it in relation to coeliac disease. Thankfully the staff at the Rose Garden café were knowledgeable about what food was gluten free and they double checked with the kitchen though they cannot guarantee there will be no cross contamination. 

I enjoyed a lovely jacket potato with tuna. My meal came with salad and a honey and mustard dressing- I avoided the salad as I was unsure whether the dressing was gluten free. I'm still new to dining out gluten free and this will serve as a reminder to always ask about dressing. 

The gluten containing meal that my partner ordered looked amazing and by his account tasted amazing too. For a park café it has a large menu and the food is home cooked, fresh and reasonably priced. The portions sizes were good and the staff were friendly.

Image of the interior of the Rose Garden café in Sheffield's Graves Park. Image shows a nestle ice cream freezer, a Kelly's ice cream, the counter with a cake display and chalk boards along the walls listing the daily specials available in the café.

I can't talk about the Rose Garden café without mentioning the cakes. They have the most amazing display of freshly baked cakes at amazingly reasonable prices. The Victoria Sponge looked divine, soft sponge with layers of fresh cream and it stood about 8 inches tall! Sadly the cakes on display weren't gluten free but they did have some pre-packaged gluten free treats available so you don't have to miss out. There are various pre-packaged ice creams available as well as a variety of flavours of Kelly's ice cream for cones. 

As you can see there's plenty to do at Graves Park. The fun fair isn't a permanent attraction but I imagine the space is used for other things throughout the year. I'm unsure how regularly the land train and inflatable slide will be there but even without these things there is still plenty to do. The play area is brilliant, the café is a lovely place to stop to refuel and I feel there's a lot of woodland and nature to explore as you move away from the main area. The Farm Park is a real highlight and a reason to visit in itself. We discovered Graves Park purely from the Bear Hunt but we'll definitely be visiting again.

 Thanks For Reading 

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