Exeter playground in Kidlington is not on the scale of its nearby rival, Cutteslow park, but it has its own advantages and I actually quite liked it- its smaller, so it is much easier to keep an eye on children and the sand pit has so many cool amenities.. We spent most of the time there, though it was really cold and wet. There are some fossils and dinosaur stuff hidden in the pit for digging- certainly unique to this park (WATCH OUR VIDEO ON INSTAGRAM HERE)
There are swings for all ages too. The older kids swings were arranged in a big circle facing each other-which looked awesome- I can visualise kids sitting around, gossiping and swinging at the same time
There is also a variety of climbing frames and slides to suit different ages. The climbing frame has a climbing net, climbing wall, ladder, wobbly bridge, tunnel slide and a vertical slide. Ay (just turned 3 at the time) was being adventurous and actually climbed the one for older kids (which I am surprised about but he’s certainly getting more confident with his wobbly bridges).
In addition, there are trampolines, standing see saw, round about, spider web, small mound with a slide and sensory equipment for toddlers.
The toddler area and the landing of the bigger climbing frame has protective flooring but the spider web does not, which in my opinion should always have one. The width of the spider web ropes meant Ay could climb to the top, which he was really chuffed about
Outside, the fenced area is a double zip wire (two side by side to one another), and older children were racing each other down, which seemed a lot of fun. The zip wire is slightly higher than the usual ones, so it is not suitable for very young children.
The surrounding park looked ideal for ball games. There was also a table tennis table, basket ball and tennis court.
🗺 Crown Road, Kidlington, OX5 1AG
🚘 Free parking
🚻 No toilets on site
🍕 No refreshments
🧺 Picnics possible
🐕 Dogs not allowed in the play area
UPDATE 10/2/2021): They have recently introduced the “the zoo trail”, which starts from here. Essentially these are five circular trails , each being given an animal theme, reflecting Kidlington’s history as being home to Oxford Zoo in the 1930s.
The green monkey trail takes in Kidlington High Street, The Moors and Park Hill Recreation Ground; The orange lion route roars through Orchard Recreation Ground and does a circuit of Gosford before returning to Exeter Hall; The blue elephant trail stomps past Kidlington Football Club, around Garden City and through Ron Groves Park; The final pink bear trail is a two-in-one, passing through Chorefields and visiting the canal, while providing a shorter bear cub route for little legs.
Each path is easy to follow, with animal paw prints painted on the ground and signposts provided to help people find their way. The trails vary in length from 1.7km to 5km, offering a slightly different experience for the walker. People can join the circuits at any point but central signage at Exeter Hall marks the official start and end points.
Features, including child-friendly games painted on the ground, bug houses, scramble boulders and balancing logs, each adding interest on the way, while benches are being provided as a point for rest and relaxation. The routes have been designed to be accessible and user friendly, including the provision of short-cuts, so that all ages and abilities can enjoy them.
For more information about the trails and to take a guided walk, take a look at the child-friendly map.
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