Oakwell Hall is furnished as a family home in the 1690s and offers visitors a real insight into a post-English Civil War household. The site also includes over 100 acres of country park, a visitor centre, gift shop, nature trail, picnic sites, playgound and countryside centre.
Oakwell Hall is closed to the public until spring 2017 for a £190,000 investment programme.
The country park, weddings and events programme are not affected by the closure.
Opening times for the other facilities are as normal throughout the upgrade.
Learn more about Oakwell Hall
Opening times and facilities
There are plenty of facilities on offer at Oakwell Hall. From shopping to eating and drinking, countryside and play areas, parties and venue hire.
Located within the historic Visitor Centre courtyard, the new Oakwell Shop is a great place to find wonderful 'not on the high street' items, with an superb range of stock from local artisan suppliers, including many reflecting the history of the Hall and the beauty of the Country Park.
There are stylish and quirky 17th century style ceramics by local potter John Hudson (as displayed in Oakwell Hall) and a range of delicately beautiful wildlife mugs, prints and cards by Holmfirth artist Joanne T Kell. Chic home, kitchen and garden accessories, artists' print cards, stationery and books are also on sale.
Yorkshire foodies will love our range of locally produced delicious Yorkshire goodies including Yorkshire Honey from Stickeys of Wakefield; the best Brandy Snap in the world from Wrights of Brighouse; Proper Nutty's unique 'smunchy' Yorkshire peanut butter made in Dewsbury; delicious hand-made fudge and cinder toffee from Farrah's of Harrogate. There are unusual and rare jams & Jellies from Farmhouse Kitchen in Sowerby Bridge and also some of the best old fashioned retro sweets around!
For children there is a huge range of traditional and contemporary toys and games to choose from for both indoor and outdoor play, as well as children's jewellery, books and gemstones.
Summer (Mar-Oct) opening times: Tues-Fri 11am-5pm and Sat-Sun.12noon-5pm.
Winter (Nov-Feb) opening times: Tues-Fri 11am-4pm & Sat-Sun 12-4pm
Eating and drinking
The Oaktree Café
Located near the Hall and gardens in a restored cottage, the Oaktree Cafe offers a delicious selection of speciality hot drinks, home made soup, freshly made hot and cold sandwiches and a daily special hot meal, as well as ice creams and fresh cakes.
The Oaktree Cafe is run by locally based company "Food 4 Thought" who pride themselves on providing good quality, locally-sourced fresh food. As well as indoor seating, visitors can take full advantage of the lovely country park environment with outdoor tables in the cottage garden and in the adjacent Orchard.
The Oaktree Cafe is open daily between 10am-4pm.
The Countryside Centre
Located at the south-west car park of Oakwell Country Park, the Countryside Centre offers hot and cold drinks, cakes, biscuits and confectionery. This is an ideal base for walking in the country park or enjoying the adjacent chiildren's playground.
The Countryside Centre is open at weekends and school holidays between 12noon-4pm.
The Oakwell Visitor Centre is housed in historic farm building surrounding a courtyard. The complex includes the Courtyard Gift Shop and toilets, together with a 19th century barn and classroom facilities that host events, school visits and exhibitions and can also be hired for private functions.
The large barn was probably built around 1840 and is grade 2 listed. Double doors once allowed carts piled high with produce to pass through while slits in the wall provided ventilation, ideal for winnowing grain. The other farm buildings of the courtyard complex were rebuilt in the 1980s.
Toilets and baby change facilities are located here, with easy access from the courtyard.
Countryside centre and play area
Situated next to the south-western car park, the Countryside Centre offers a selection of warm drinks and snacks and a useful toilet stop.The centre also features 'About Oakwell', an exhibition that tells the story of the history and development of the Country Park.The popular play area, which has been designed with the needs of able bodied and less able bodied children in mind, is located next to the Countryside Centre.
The Countryside Centre is open from 12 noon until 4pm every weekend and daily during school holidays. The Play Area can be used at any time.
Oakwell has an excellent reputation for the education service it provides and holds successive Sandford Heritage Education Awards for the quality of its educational provision.
Schools are welcomed from both within and outside Kirklees. Prices of school visits vary, please enquire for details. We can only accept one class per visit, with a minimum 1:10 ratio of adults to children.
History visits inside the Hall and science visits in the Country Park are available:
To book a visit or arrange a briefing please contact:
- Elaine Jones
- Phone 01924 326246
- Email firstname.lastname@example.org
Oakwell has several great spaces available to hire for meetings, conferences, AGMs, presentations, product launches etc.
The stunning historic stone Barn in the Visitor Centre Courtyard is the jewel in the crown and can seat up to 110 people theatre style, providing a uniquely attractive venue for all types of event. There are three smaller rooms available for hire around the Courtyard too, suitable for meetings, team building days and workshops.
Pre-booked, organised groups are very welcome and we offer a discounted entrance charge for groups of 10+.
Groups can enjoy their own self-guided visit using the guide books and story boards to bring to life the Hall, history and furnishings.
Alternatively groups can book a guided tour at an additional charge. The following tours are available:
- Historic House Tour: Hear stories of the past occupants of Oakwell, discover the Bronte connections and fascinating insights into the collections on display and the history of the Hall.
- Period Gardens Tour: Take a guided tour through the stunning 17th century gardens of Oakwell, including the orchard and arboretum.
- Bronte Tour: Walk in the footsteps of Charlotte Bronte as you discover how Oakwell Hall, together with the local area and people, featured in her novel Shirley.
Each tour lasts approximately 50 minutes. Entrance charges are payable in addition to the separate guided tour charge.
For further information, prices or to book please call:
- Phone 01924 326240
Ranger birthday parties - Excitement, adventure and very, very different!
Book a Ranger led birthday party at Oakwell Country Park. You can choose from bushcraft, outdoor cooking, pond dipping or cooking in the Hall.
For further information and bookings please call:
- Phone 01924 326244
Oakwell Hall and Country Park has two car parks.
The Countryside Centre car park in the south-west of the site is open for parking at all times, though a height restriction barrier prevents access to vehicles of over two metres.
The Visitor Car Park next to the Hall itself is open from 9am until 5pm, when the gates are locked overnight.
We do not operate a call out service should any vehicles be locked in the Hall car park when the park closes at 5pm. Gates will open the following morning at 9am.
Both car parks have spaces for disabled users. For specific needs or a large vehicle, please contact staff. Low gradient tarmac path (1/3 mile) connects the two car parks. RADAR key needed for mobility scooters to pass through a gate (see blue route on Easier Access map).
Due to the historic building, access for wheelchair users and those with mobility issues cannot be provided to upper floor. Stairs, low doorways and uneven surfaces may limit access. Ground floor is accessible. Large-print guide is available.
The Visitor Centre and Barn
Ground floor accessible. Toilet for disabled visitors.
External seating for wheelchair users. Inside accessible, but can get crowded with no reserved seating. Toilets in the Visitor Centre.
Gardens and Country Park
Access to gardens via ramps for mobility scooter and wheelchair users. For access to the Park please see Easier Access Map for low gradient routes without steps. Paths may be muddy.
Countryside Centre and Play Area
Accessible. Two accessible toilets. Tarmac paths to picnic tables and play area. Play facility designed with the needs of able-bodied and disabled children and carers in mind.
Access to Countryside Centre car park is restricted by a barrier to vehicles under 2m (6'6"). Access for minibuses can be arranged upon request.
If you would like any help arranging your visit you can get in contact with the Ranger Team.
- Ranger team
- Phone 01924 326246
Get involved at Oakwell Hall and help the rangers care for the buildings and regenerate the surrounding area.
With your help, the unique heritage of the local area and collections of national and international significance will be preserved for you, your friends, children and grandchildren to enjoy and be inspired by in the future. Your donation will help us to:
- bring exciting stories and collections to life, making them accessible to everyone through exhibitions and events.
- care for the Grade I Listed Building and its fine collections.
- purchase new collections.
- contribute to local tourism and the regeneration of the surrounding area.
- provide a welcoming space with high quality facilities for everyone to enjoy.
- Make a donation
Volunteering with the rangers
- Volunteer Stories from Kirklees Museums and Galleries video
- Rangers run sessions every Thursday doing everything from footpath construction to horticulture.
- They also offer volunteering and team building exercises for corporate clients and other large organisations.
- The Young Rangers scheme for young adults operates through the school holidays.
Friends of Oakwell Hall and Country Park
Founded in 1988, the Friends of Oakwell Hall and Country Park are a voluntary support group for this wonderfully authentic 16th Century manor house in Yorkshire - and for its surrounding 110 acres of country park.