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We welcome all visitors to Nene Park and our team will do all they can to ensure that you enjoy your visit. The Trust works with a range of organisations and individuals including our own Nene Park Access Forum to improve and promote access for all at the Park.

The information below provides an overview of the accessibility at Ferry Meadows, Thorpe Meadows, Orton Mere and Woodston Reach.

If you have any questions or feedback about access or the Park’s facilities contact us and the team will be happy to help. Staff in the Visitor Centre or Nene Outdoors can also answer queries and update visitors about conditions on a given day.

Ferry Meadows accessibility

Key information / access highlights:

  • Accessible parking
  • Many firm, surfaced paths
  • Mobility scooter hire
  • Accessible toilets
  • Braille and large print guides
  • Induction loop at all counters
  • Listening devices available for guided walks
  • Staff available on site
Planning your visit

Assistance dogs are welcome throughout the Park including inside the Visitor Centre. Dog drinking bowls are provided outside the Visitor Centre, Ferry Meadows Café and Lakeside Kitchen and Bar.

Mobility scooters are welcome on all surfaced paths throughout the Park. The Park has three mobility scooters available for free loan from the Visitor Centre. Pre-booking is recommended. A short induction will be carried out by a member of staff for first time users of our equipment. For more information or to book a mobility scooter please contact us.

Guides to the Park have been produced for loan in braille and large print formats. Our regular newsletter Parklife is available in standard, large print or audio formats. All are freely available in advance of your visit either electronically or by post. Please contact us with details of your requirements.

Getting here

Please visit our where we are page for details of the different ways to get to Ferry Meadows Country Park.

Parking

Accessible parking bays are available in all of the permanent tarmac car parks. On busy days overflow parking is provided on grass fields.

Parking charges apply all day, every day. Please visit our parking page for details of charges.

Please be aware that there is a height restriction barrier of 2.1 metres and alligator teeth across the access roads at Ferry Meadows. Oversized vehicles displaying a blue badge are permitted access to Ferry Meadows. For details of how to arrange access please visit our parking pages or contact us in advance of your visit.

Welcome

Visitor Centre

Our friendly staff in the Ferry Meadows Visitor Centre can provide you with all the information you will need to make the most of your day. Entrance to the building is via a short ramp to automatic sliding doors at the front or a small slope through a push button operated door from the Ferry Meadows Café side.

Guides to the Park, including large print and braille versions, are available from the centre.

Please visit our Visitor Centre page for details of the opening times.

Nene Outdoors

If you choose to start your visit at the Lakeside area our team have a small base at Nene Outdoors activity centre. The Lakeside building has stepped and ramped access from the pathways opposite the car park.

The staff here have guides to the Park, including large print and braille versions and are able to help with any general Park enquiries you may have. Please visit our Nene Outdoors page for details of the opening times.

Ranger assistance

If you require assistance whilst exploring the Park our Rangers are contactable via 07860 308081 from 08:00 – 18:30 March – September and 08:00 – 16:00 October – February. Please note our Ranger team is not available on Christmas Day or Boxing Day.

Nene Park Trust is a member of the Peterborough Dementia Action Alliance who work towards making Peterborough a Dementia Friendly City where people living with Dementia and their carers are able to live well, get the help they need in everyday life and continue to do things they enjoy doing. A number of Nene Park Trust staff have undertaken Dementia awareness sessions and will be happy to assist anyone living with Dementia and their carers. For more information about the Dementia Action Alliance please visit the Dementia Action Alliance site.

Getting around

Path gradients and surfaces

Ferry Meadows Country Park is a natural landscape and paths are made up of various surfaces which may be uneven in places.

Paths around the main areas of the Park are hard surfaced (a mixture of tarmac, bound gravel, crushed limestone and compacted stone), generally of a minimum width of two meters, with a good contrast to the surroundings, reasonably level and at a safe distance from open water. They are shared routes for pedestrians and cyclists, and in some circumstances horse riders.

There are a few steep sections along the pathways within the Park notably at Ham Bridge, Milton Ferry Bridge, Lynch Farm Bridge and within Bluebell Wood.

Please note the paths in Bluebell Wood are particularly uneven being made up of compacted stone and has steep sections. The Riverside Walk is a section of footpath adjacent to the River Nene on the lower edge of Bluebell Wood and is an uneven, unsurfaced footpath with sections of boardwalk, steps and muddy areas which regularly floods in winter. This path is also linked to the rest of Bluebell Wood by two flights of steps.

Please refer to the Ferry Meadows map for more detail of the path network including steep and unsurfaced sections or contact us for more information.

Seating

There are many benches and picnic tables spaced out around all of the lakes, between the car park and Lynch Lake, near the Visitor Centre and Ferry Meadows Café and along the River Nene near the wildlife hides. Benches and picnic tables are mostly situated on grassy areas a short distance away from the paths.

Information

To help with navigation whilst at the Park, an RNIB Map for All (a map designed to be read by sight and touch) is located outside the Discovery Den Education Centre and Lakeside.

Guides of the Park are available in standard, braille and large print formats, although these braille and large print formats are currently being reviewed and updated. Our regular newsletter Parklife is available in standard, large print or audio formats. All are freely available from the Visitor Centre or Nene Outdoors reception.

Facilities and services

Toilets

There are two public toilet blocks within the Park, one next to the Discovery Den and one alongside the car park at Lakeside. There is an accessible toilet at each block which includes the baby changing facility. These toilets are opened and locked with the opening hours of the Park.

Toilets are also provided for customers at Lakeside Kitchen and Bar, Nene Outdoors, and Ferry Meadows Café. Each has separate accessible toilets and at Lakeside Kitchen and Bar there is also a dedicated accessible baby changing facility.

Please note that the accessible toilet at Ferry Meadows Café is smaller than the current standards for accessible toilets and includes a baby changing facility.

Food & drink

The Park has a range of options for food and drink during your visit. Contact details, opening times and other information can be found on our where to eat pages.

Lakeside Kitchen & Bar

The Lakeside building has stepped and ramped access from the pathways opposite the car park to the main entrance which has automatic sliding doors.

The main counter is at a lower level and hearing loops are available at the main and bar counters as shown by the T and ear symbol sign. There is also a room loop within the furthest section of the seating area which can be seperated off for functions.

Covered outdoor seating, heated with a woodburner, is provided welcoming all dogs, however assistance dogs are welcome throughout.

Lakeside Kitchen & Bar offers vegetarian, vegan and gluten free options. If you have any dietary requirements please speak to the café staff.

Ferry Meadows Café

The main entrance is set back from the main pathway at the rear of the covered seating area. This is a paved area that includes fixed picnic tables with a slight slope up to the manual opening access doors. On warmer, still days the doors are held open but may be closed on colder, windier days.

The main counter is at a lower level and a hearing loop is available at the till as shown by the T and ear symbol sign.

Ferry Meadows café offers vegetarian, vegan and gluten free options. If you have any dietary requirements please speak to the café staff.

BBQs

Fixed BBQ stands are available on the grass bank on the opposite side of the path to the public moorings on Overton Lake, along the edge of the Coach Car Park and next to the play area at Lakeside on a first come, first served basis. A number of picnic tables in the Park also have pull out trays on the end for holding disposable BBQs.

Picnics

With a vast area of meadow land and good numbers of accessible picnic tables Ferry Meadows is the perfect place to bring a picnic.

Play Areas

Ferry Meadows has three play areas providing a range of equipment and surfacing creating different experiences for a variety of ages, abilities and interests:

Otter Play Area

Located next to Ferry Meadows Café and designed with younger children in mind. This fenced play area incorporates natural features such as sand, water, rocks and trees. A small wide slide, cradle seat swings and small raised platform with log tunnel underneath are all set into sand. A concrete path with self closing access gates from the paved seating area next to Ferry Medows Café takes visitors through the play area and rejoins the main path opposite the boat trip and duck feeding platforms via large flat paving stones set in the grass. Seating is provided in the sand area set slight back from the concrete path.

Badger Play Area

Located along the pathway between the Visitor Centre and Ham Bridge this unfenced play area utilises the neighbouring wooded area for den building and exploration along with created swales (a series of mounds and ditches designed to collect water) with accessible crossing points to bring nature into play. The built play structures include climbing towers, raised tunnels to tube slide, swings including basket swing, in ground trampoline. These are situated in areas of bark chippings with a limestone path through the built play area linking to the main footpath.

Lakeside Play Area

Located in the grass area near to the Lakeside car park and set back at a distance from the pathways. This is a fenced play area with traditional play structures including cradle swings, multi activity unit with slide, rope net climber, balance beam and standing spinner set in bark chip surface. Seating and picnic tables are provided on the inside edge of the play area which is paved.

Please visit our play areas page for details.

Nene Outdoors

Nene Outdoors runs various water and land based events for a range of ages and abilities from the Lakeside centre. The Lakeside building has stepped and ramped access from the pathways opposite the car park. Please visit our Nene Outdoors page for details of activities and contacts to discuss any specific access requirements.

Duck feeding

The duck feeding platform is located near to the Visitor Centre. A sloped path leads down to the platform which is a wooden decked, metal framed platform on floats to enable it to move with the water level. Wooden handrails surround the platform which forms a T shape over the water. The duck feeding area is on the right hand side of the T and boat trips operate from the left. A gate is locked across this section when the boat is out on the water or when trips are not operating.

We encourage the safe and healthy feeding of birds in the Park so please only feed the ducks and geese pellets available from the Visitor Centre. General information on how visitors can help us keep the ducks and geese healthy can be found on our feed the ducks page.

Educational facilties

From the Discovery Den Education Centre at Ferry Meadows we offer a range of educational activities. The room is level access and has an accessible toilet. This facility is also used to host a range of family friendly events and activities. See our schools pages for details of the offer for schools and groups.

Events

Ferry Meadows hosts many events throughout the year covering a range of activities, interests and ages. The events pages contain information about the broad accessibility of an event, which organisation is running the event and the contact details if you have any special requirements or queries regarding the accessibility of a particular event.

Neckloop listening devices for use by those with hearing aids or non hearing aid users are available to visitors on Nene Park Trust guided walks and led events to pick up and amplify sound, making it clearer and easier to understand. If you feel this equipment may be of use to you on one of our events please contact us for more details.

Volunteer opportunities

Nene Park Trust offers a range volunteer opportunities. Our volunteer pages contain information about current vacanices and the contact details to discuss any specific access requirements.

Things to do

Please note the following activities are run by partner organisation and do not operate at the Park full time. Please contact them in advance of a visit if you wish specifically to see or take part in this activity.

Cycling

Many of the pathways around Ferry Meadows are shared with cyclists and some waymarking is provided for suggested cycle routes. General details about cycling at Ferry Meadows can be found on our cycling page.

There are two cycle hire facilities at Ferry Meadows:

  • Vivacity’s Adapted Cycling Scheme providing a range of adapted cycles to suit most ages and abilities. For further details and contact information visit our cycling page.
  • Rutland Cycling with a wide fleet of bikes for all the family. For further details and contact information visit our cycling page.

Dementia Cafe

A monthly Dementia Café for people with Dementia and their carers, family and friends is held in the Nene Outdoors training room at Lakeside, Ferry Meadows by the Alzheimer's Society. For more details visit Alzheimers Site.

Ferry Meadows Miniature Railway

The miniature railway provides a coach designed to take wheelchairs. For further details and contact information visit our Ferry Meadows Railway page.

Fishing

There are two designated accessible fishing stands on the east side of Gunwade Lake, near to the Lakeside car park. There is a concrete ramp with metal handrails either side, leading from the main path via a sign, to the concrete stands which are designed to accommodate one wheelchair user each.

Fishing rights at Ferry Meadows are operated by Peterborough and District Angling Assocation with day tickets and annual membership available. For further details and contact information visit our fishing page.

Horse riding

There are horse routes throughout the Park which are marked on posts with blue horse shoe signs.

Horse riding lessons and short breaks for adults and children at the Park are provided by Lynch Farm Riding.

For further details about riding in Nene Park and contact information visit our ride a horse page.

Nene Bowmen

As a long established archery club that uses an area on Oak Meadow near to the Lakeside car park for their outdoor shooting, Nene Bowmen offers archers of all abilities, including those brand new to the sport, the opportunity to shoot in a friendly environment. For further details and contact information visit our clubs and activities page.

Packers Canoe Club

Peterborough’s canoe club meet at Lakeside throughout the summer months. For further details and contact information visit our clubs and activities page.

Peterborough Model Flying Club

Peterborough Model Flying Club is a multi discipline club with flying sites for free flight, control line and radio control. The club make use of Coney Meadow which just off of the main car park. For further details and contact information visit our clubs and activities page.

Peterborough Sailability

Providing sailing opportunities for disabled people from the Lakeside. For further details and contact information visit our clubs and activities page.

After your visit

Newsletter

Our regular newsletter Parklife is available in standard, large print or audio formats. All are freely available from the Visitor Centre, can be downloaded through our website or sent by post by contacting us.

Nene Park Access Forum

Do you have an interest in improving access at Nene Park? Nene Park Trust holds holds a twice yearly access forum to update park users about access improvement works and to hear directly from visitors about their experiences of using the Park. We welcome anyone with an interest or an experience to share.

Feedback

We are always keen to hear visitors’ experiences of the Park to continue to improve our services and you can provide this in a number of ways:

  • Contact us directly
  • Complete a comment card or visitor survey with staff at the Visitor Centre
  • Provide feedback online through TripAdvisor
  • Join our Access Forum or Volunteers to become more involved in the development of the Park. For more details of these groups please contact us.

Thorpe Meadows accessibility

Key information / access highlights:

  • Accessible
  • Some firm, surfaced paths
Planning your visit

Assistance dogs are welcome throughout the Park.

Mobility scooters are welcome on all surfaced paths throughout the Park.

Our regular newsletter Parklife is available in standard, large print or audio formats. All are freely available in advance of your visit either electronically or by post. Please contact us with details of your requirements.

Getting here

Please visit our where we are page for details of the different ways to get to Thorpe Meadows.

Parking

Accessible parking bays are available in the car park. There is a drop kerb with a slight lip from the car park in this area for access to the path network.

Please be aware there is a 2.1 metre height barrier across the entrance to the car park.

It is free to park for one hour and then £2.50 for 24 hours. There are solar powered pay and display payment machines in the car park. Payment can be made in cash at the machine or by card with the new mobile app. All instructions are on the payment machines in the car park.

Getting around

Path gradients and surfaces

Thorpe Meadows is a natural landscape and paths are made up of various surfaces which may be uneven in places.

The main pathway alongside the edge of the rowing lake at Thorpe Meadows is tarmac and relatively flat. The rest of the pathways are uneven limestone and compacted stone surfaces with grass paths mown alongside the river and between some of the sculptures on the south side of the rowing lake. There is a particularly steep section on the north west corner of the horse route and at the narrow red footbridge on the path that takes visitors from Thorpe Meadows in The Boardwalks Nature Reserve and towards the City Centre.

The nearby Orton Mere and Woodston Reach can be accessed by crossing the Nene Valley Railway and the footbridge over the lock. Please note there is a short ramp with self closing gates to access the railway crossing and a steep section on the path into Thorpe Meadows after the lock on the North side of the River.

The path network are shared routes for pedestrians and cyclists, and in some circumstances horse riders.

Please refer to the Thorpe Meadows map showing more detail of the path network including steep and unsurfaced sections or contact us.

Seating

There are a number of benches located along the north path of the rowing lake. They are set back from the main path with hard surfaced bases. A couple of picnic tables are located in the grass area between Orton Mere and Thorpe Meadows on the opposite side of the path to the river moorings.

Information

A Thorpe Meadows map is available at the car park and available on our website via our Thorpe Meadows page.

Our regular newsletter Parklife is available in standard, large print or audio formats. All are freely available in advance of your visit either electronically, by post. Please contact us with details of your requirements.

Ranger assistance

Thorpe Meadows is an unmanned site.

If you require assistance whilst exploring the Park our Rangers are contactable via 07860 308081 from 08:00 – 18:30 March – September and 08:00 – 16:00 October – February. Please note our Ranger team is not available on Christmas Day or Boxing Day.

Facilities and services

Food & drink

Thorpe Meadows is the perfect place for a picnic or barbeque. A couple of picnic tables are located in the grass area between Orton Mere and Thorpe Meadows on the opposite side of the path to the river moorings.

Whilst there is no café facility directly on the site the neighbouring Dragonfly Hotel and Boathouse pub are situated at the eastern end of the rowing lake. Both offer outdoor seating and views of the lake.

Details on how to picnic and BBQ in Nene Park as well as contact information for local catering outlets can be found on our where to eat pages.

Events

Nene Park hosts many events throughout the year covering a range of activities, interests and ages. The events pages contain information about the broad accessibility of an event, which organisation is running the event and the contact details if you have any special requirements or queries regarding the accessibility of a particular event.

Neckloop listening devices for use by those with hearing aids or non hearing aid users are available to visitors on Nene Park Trust guided walks and led events to pick up and amplify sound, making it clearer and easier to understand. If you feel this equipment may be of use to you on one of the Trusts events please contact us for more details.

Volunteer opportunities

Nene Park Trust offers a range of volunteer opportunities. Our volunteer pages contain information about current vacanices and the contact details to discuss any specific access requirements.

Things to do

Please note the following activities are run by partner organisations and do not operate at the Park full time. Please contact them in advance of a visit if you wish specifically to see or take part in this activity.

Fishing

Fishing rights at Thorpe Meadows are operated by Peterborough and District Angling Assocation with day tickets and annual membership available. For further details and contact information visit our fishing page.

Horse riding

There are horse routes throughout the Park which are marked on posts with blue horse shoe signs.

Horse riding lessons and short breaks for adults and children at the Park are provided by Lynch Farm Riding.

For further details about riding in Nene Park and contact information visit our ride a horse page.

Peterborough Model Flying Club

Peterborough Model Flying Club is a multi discipline club with flying sites for free flight, control line and radio control. The club make use of a meadow area located on the north side of the rowing lake at the end farthest from the rowing club building. For further details and contact information visit our clubs and activities page.

Peterborough City Rowing Club

Thorpe Meadows purpose built rowing lake and club house is home to the Peterborough City Rowing Club. The club is associated with Rowability and does all it can to make the sport accessible to all. For further details and contact information visit our clubs and activities page.

After your visit

Newsletter

Our regular newsletter Parklife is available in standard, large print or audio formats. All are freely available from the Ferry Meadows Visitor Centre, can be downloaded through our website or sent by post by contacting us contact us.

Nene Park Access Forum

Do you have an interest in improving access at Nene Park? Nene Park Trust holds holds a twice yearly access forum to update park users about access improvement works and to hear directly from visitors about their experiences of using the park. We welcome anyone with an interest or an experience to share.

Feedback

We are always keen to hear visitors’ experiences of the Park to continue to improve our services and you can provide this in a number of ways:

  • Contact us directly
  • Complete a comment card or visitor survey with staff at the Ferry Meadows Visitor Centre
  • Provide feedback online through TripAdvisor
  • Join our Access Forum or Volunteers to become more involved in the development of the Park. For more details of these groups please contact us

Orton Mere and Woodston Reach accessibility

Key information / access highlights:

  • Accessible, free parking
  • Some firm, surfaced paths
Planning your visit

Assistance dogs are welcome throughout the Park.

Mobility scooters are welcome on all surfaced paths throughout the Park.

Our regular newsletter Parklife is available in standard, large print or audio formats. All are freely available in advance of your visit either electronically or by post. Please contact us with details of your requirements.

Getting here

Please visit our where we are page for details of the different ways to get to Orton Mere and Woodston Reach.

Parking

Accessible parking bays are available at Orton Mere in the main car park and near the model boat powerboat landing stage on Osier Lake alongside the access road.

A second overflow car park alongside the Nene Valley Railway station at Orton Mere is opened on occasions. There are no designated accessible bays in this area and there is a gradient from the parking area to the main path. Parking is free for all vehicles.

Getting around

Path gradients and surfaces

Orton Mere and Woodston Reach are natural landscapes and paths are made up of various surfaces which may be uneven in places.

The main pathways at Orton Mere are tarmac and relatively flat. Mown grass routes are created around Orton Mere pond. The nearby Thorpe Meadows can be accessed by crossing the Nene Valley Railway and the footbridge over the lock. Please note there is a short ramp with self closing gates to access the railway crossing and a steep section on the path into Thorpe Meadows after the lock on the north side of the River.

The paths at Woodston Reach are mostly tarmac but also include firm but muddy sections, a couple of narrow footbridges and significant gradients on the routes between Woodston Reach and Orton Mere and the neighbouring housing estate.

The path network are shared routes for pedestrians and cyclists, and in some circumstances horse riders.

A map of Orton Mere and Woodston Reach is at the main Orton Mere car park.

Seating

There is one bench at Orton Mere overlooking Osier Lake near to the vehicle entrance. The bench is sited in a grass area away from the tarmac path.

Information

A map of Orton Mere and Woodston Reach is at the main Orton Mere car park.

Our regular newsletter Parklife is available in standard, large print or audio formats. All are freely available in advance of your visit either electronically, by post. Please contact us with details of your requirements.

Ranger assistance

Orton Mere and Woodston Reach are unmanned sites. If you require assistance whilst exploring the Park our Rangers are contactable via 07860 308081 from 08:00 – 18:30 March – September and 08:00 – 16:00 October – February. Please note our Ranger team is not available on Christmas Day or Boxing Day.

Facilities and services

Food & drink

Orton Mere and Woodston Reach is the perfect place for a picnic or barbeque. Details on how to picnic and BBQ in Nene Park can be found on our where to eat pages.

Duck feeding

We encourage the safe and healthy feeding of birds in the Park so please only feed the ducks and geese pellets available from Ferry Meadows Visitor Centre. General information on how visitors can help us keep the ducks and geese healthy can be found on our feed the ducks page.

Events

Nene Park hosts many events throughout the year covering a range of activities, interests and ages. The events pages contain information about the broad accessibility of an event, which organisation is running the event and the contact details if you have any special requirements or queries regarding the accessibility of a particular event.

Neckloop listening devices for use by those with hearing aids or non hearing aid users are available to visitors on Nene Park Trust guided walks and led events to pick up and amplify sound, making it clearer and easier to understand. If you feel this equipment may be of use to you on one of the Trusts events please contact us for more details.

Volunteer opportunities

Nene Park Trust offers a range of volunteer opportunities. Our volunteer pages contain information about current vacanices and the contact details to discuss any specific access requirements.

Things to do

Please note the following activities are run by partner organisations and do not operate at the Park full time. Please contact them in advance of a visit if you wish specifically to see or take part in this activity.

Fishing

Fishing rights at Orton Mere and Woodston Reach are operated by Peterborough and District Angling Assocation with day tickets and annual membership available. For further details and contact information visit our fishing page.

Horse riding

There are horse routes throughout the Park which are marked on posts with blue horse shoe signs.

Horse riding lessons and short breaks for adults and children at the Park are provided by Lynch Farm Riding Ltd.

For further details about riding in Nene Park and contact information visit our ride a horse page.

Nene Valley Railway

The Nene Valley Railway is one of the best known standard gauge steam preservation railways in the country and home to that very special engine, Thomas. The railway runs between Wansford and Peterborough with two stations in Nene Park at Ferry Meadows (Overton) and Orton Mere. For further details and contact information visit our Nene Valley Railway page.

Peterborough Model Power Boat Club

The Peterborough Model Power Boat Club use Osier Lake at Orton Mere for their club activities. A tarmac path leads down to a gravel topped platform from where boats are operated. For further details and contact information visit our clubs and activities page.

Proteus Canoe Club

The club based at Orton Mere has direct access to the river and promotes all forms of paddle sports but specialises in Slalom. For further details and contact information visit our clubs and activities page.

After your visit

Newsletter

Our regular newsletter Parklife is available in standard, large print or audio formats. All are freely available from the Ferry Meadows Visitor Centre, can be downloaded through our website or sent by post by contacting us.

Nene Park Access Forum

Do you have an interest in improving access at Nene Park? Nene Park Trust holds holds a twice yearly access forum to update park users about access improvement works and to hear directly from visitors about their experiences of using the park. We welcome anyone with an interest or an experience to share.

Feedback

We are always keen to hear visitors’ experiences of the Park to continue to improve our services and you can provide this in a number of ways:

  • Contact us directly
  • Complete a comment card or visitor survey with staff at the Ferry Meadows Visitor Centre
  • Provide feedback online through TripAdvisor
  • Join our Access Forum or Volunteers to become more involved in the development of the Park. For more details of these groups please contact us
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