As summer rapidly approaches many of us are searching desperately for some normalcy in these abnormal days. With many places still closed to the public, the search for summer hotspots has been a difficult one. Parks have been the top choice of many with them being the backbone of pandemic getaways since it began, providing an open space where you can safely meet friends and family while adhering to government guidelines. Here are a few of our favourite parks in Manchester City Centre…

Enjoy a green getaway in the centre of town at Angel Meadow Park

In the ‘Green Quarter’, residing between the River Irk and Rochdale Road sits the ironically named Angel Meadow Park, a park whose chilling history juxtaposes the tranquillity of the place it is today. During the mid-19th century, Angel Meadow was one of the most notorious Manchester slums, conditions there were so dire that it became a mass burial ground for 40,000 paupers. You can still walk through that area of the park known as St Michael’s Flags, exploring this tragic history through the information boards and booklets. For history-buffs that are missing museums, Angel Meadow Park might be the spot for you – whilst also providing a nice green haven in the middle of town.

Old Mount Street, Manchester, M4 4TF
Grab lunch in the sunshine at St John's Gardens

For those looking to escape the hustle and bustle of the city centre while still being in it, St John’s Gardens is the place for you. Located between Lower Byrom Street and Quay Street, this small green space provides the perfect lunch spot for those who crave a little quiet. There are many benches, so the garden is perfect for city workers and students who are on their breaks.

Lower Byrom Street, Manchester, M3 4AP
Take a stroll down Oxford Road and around Whitworth Park

Alongside Oxford Road and across from the Manchester Royal Infirmary sits Whitworth Park, a green space that is used by students and families for shorter park visits. The park displays a bronze statue of King Edward VII that was made to commemorate his visit for the opening of the Royal Infirmary. The park is a simple but charming open space for those looking for a momentary escape from the city.

Oxford Road, Manchester, M14 4PW
Explore the calming canal getaway of New Islington Marina

Hidden among the old cotton mills of Ancoats resides a serene waterway haven. New Islington Marina draws in crowds because of grassy areas that sit along the waterfront, allowing people to dip their toes in on those sweltering summer days. While sitting on the grass, the smell of baked goods might get your stomach rumbling as it is also the new home of artisan bakery Pollen. Grab your picnic blankets and hurry, as this is an assured summer hotspot.

Ancoats, Manchester City Centre, M4 6BX
Visit the memorial of an LGBTQ icon at Sackville Gardens

Bounded by Manchester’s gay village and university and residential areas, Sackville Gardens has become known for its association with Manchester’s LGBTQ community. The park is also home to some LGBTQ memorials, such as the Beacon of Hope, a steel column memorial made for those who have fought or lost their battle with HIV/AIDS. Many visitors stop to see this and the statue of ‘father of modern computing’ Alan Turning who took his life after being prosecuted for homosexual acts. For anyone interested in Mancunian LGBTQ history, this is the park for you.

Whitworth Street, Sackville Street, Manchester, M1 3WA
Discover a city centre hidden gem at Parsonage Gardens

Tucked behind Deansgate, Parsonage Gardens is the perfect spot for those looking for some calm after tackling a shopping trip. The park is a refuge for those evading the commotion of Deansgate or the office blocks that surround it. Though a small space, it is an ideal lunch location for those in need of a quick escape.

Manchester City Centre, M3 2LF
Head to a hidden haven at New Islington Green

New Islington Green is a favourite among those who live locally. The grassy piece of land by the New Islington tram stop is a beloved space for residents of the recently regenerated area. If you are to visit New Islington Green, then it had better be fast as there are plans to build an office building there, despite opposition for the residents. Over 5,000 people have signed the petition trying to stop development, so drop by before it is too late.

New Islington, Manchester City Centre, M4 7BN
Tue 6 Apr
Dior Marie Edwin
Published on:
Sat 10 Apr 2021