Williamson Park, Lancaster
Williamson Park in the historic city of Lancaster covers 54 acres of beautiful and offers children's play areas and stunning views to the Fylde Coast and the Southern Lake District.
The park includes the Ashton Memorial, (pictured right) with its grandiose green copper dome, the memorial was commissioned by James Williamson, Baron Ashton (born 1842) as a tribute to his second wife, Jenny and was built between 1907 and 1909. The memorial cost £87,000 to build, quite a sum in those days. A native of Lancaster, Baron Ashton became a self-made a millionaire through the production of oil cloth and linoleum. Rising to around around 150 feet high, the Ashton Memorial dominates the Lancaster skyline and is visible for many miles around. The Portland stonework of the folly reflects the colour of the sun, and can be seen in hues from pale yellow through pure white to deep orange, depending on the time of day
The tropical The Butterfly House in the park is Lancasterís tropical oasis where exotic butterflies flutter elegantly around their leafy surroundings. The refurbished former Palm House resembles a tropical rain forest with flowers, trees, vines, foliage and colourful butterflies.
Other features include the Lancaster sundial on the site of what was once a bandstand, some sculptures and a small folly known as the Temple. The park is extensively wooded, with many pathways winding among the trees.
The Park is the venue for many exciting events and festivals throughout the year including concerts, art exhibitions, guided walks and the ever popular Dukes Theatre outdoor performance.
Exit the M6 at jct 33 or 34 and follow the signs for Lancaster City Centre. Once in the city follow signs for 'Ashton Memorial' or 'Butterfly House'.