Burrs Country Park lies on the outskirts of Bury and holds the prestigious Green Flag Award.
The 36 hectare park features a wide variety of landscapes (woodland, wetland, ponds, open space etc.) and offers good opportunities for walking, picnicking and bird watching.
Irwell Sculpture Trail and Public Art
The park is home to 3 sculptures on the Irwell Sculpture Trail; Waterwheel by David Kemp, Stone Cycle by Julie Edwards, and Picnic Area by David Fryer.
Waterwheel at the main entrance signifies the changes that have occurred on the site; the transformation from river to an industrial site, and then to a park.
Picnic Area is a large steel sculpture of a mouse trap. It is supposed to lead the visitor to question whether they are visiting a picnic area or a tourist trap.
Stone Cycle is made from reclaimed stones originally cut for use in a bridge. The broken circular layout symbolises the passage of time.
In 2012 pupils from three local primary schools (Old Hall, Our Lady of Lourdes, and Woodbank) helped design some wonderful oak trolls for the park. They were assisted by sculptor Angela Sidwell. The trolls can be found in the woods at the northern end of park.
Burrs Activity Centre
The privately run Burrs Activity Centre closed at the end of 2017.
Fishing is offered on the lodges. To fish you must be in possession of a valid permit. Day tickets and weekly passes are available from the bailiff and Burrs Activity Centre.
Bury Agricultural Show
Every June the Showground hosts the Bury Agricultural Show, a one-day event featuring livestock competitions plus live music, a vintage car show, children’s funfair, trade stands and more.
Burrs Country Park Caravan Club Site
The caravan site was opened in July 2007 by TV presenter Steve Berry and offers 85 pitches with electric hook-ups.
Facilities include toilets and showers, a laundry, wireless internet access, plus a shop selling gas, milk, eggs, newspapers etc.
The Brown Cow pub is located near the entrance to the caravan site and offers real ale and food. It was originally built as a farmhouse in the mid-18th century. On public holidays they usually have live music and set up a bar and burger stall in the beer garden.
East Lancashire Railway
The East Lancashire Railway runs though the park. In 2009 the East Lancashire Railway Trust announced plans to build a stop at Burrs Country Park as part of its 10 year development plan. The station opened in 2016.
The park was formerly an industrial site with two cotton mills; Burr Mill and Higher Woodhill Mill, both were built at the end of the 18th century. They were originally water powered but later converted to steam.
A shortage of raw cotton caused by the American Civil War (1861 – 1865) brought about the Lancashire Cotton Famine. Lack of raw materials caused many mills in the region, including those here, to go out of business.
They were later converted to paper and bleaching mills but by the time of the Great Depression, both had gone out of business.
Higher Woodhill Mill was demolished in 1930 and by 1982 Burrs Mill, with the exception of the chimney and workers’ cottages, had also been knocked down.
Bury Council purchased the site in 1986 and began transforming it into a country park.
The chimney still stands and the workers’ cottages now house the Burrs Activity Centre and a café.
Burrs Country Park is a stop on our walk from Ramsbottom to Bury. It follows the route of the Irwell Sculpture Trail.
Burrs Country Park lies approximately one mile north of Bury town centre. Owners of satellite navigation systems should use the postcode BL8 1DA. There is free car parking at the main entrance.