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In the centre of Buxton you might stumble upon the pavilion gardens - you can find them near the opera house.... they are a beautiful spot in the centre of Buxton - an area of peace and tranquillity. I don't know much about the history of the gardens but I do know that they were restored in 1997 - the purpose of the restoration was to return them to their former Victorian glory!
The park and conservatory is free to visit, so even if you only have 15 minutes to spare then it is worth a visit!
There is a beautiful lake in the centre of the gardens and a river running through them. The flower beds are amazing, colourful and beautiful. However, when we visited it was raining so we didn't loiter too long in the gardens and chose instead to wander around the conservatory and the art gallery sale area above the cafe. The conservatory area is stunning, there are so many gorgeous plants in there. They also have lots of information boards on the walls. The cafe area is fairly big and spacious, prices are not too bad, so if it is only a shower then why not pop inside for a coffee and a look at the artwork which is available to purchase. The artwork is displayed above the cafe, and they have a range of paintings, sculptures, pottery and jewellery. All artwork is at reasonable prices and I believe they are done by local artists.
To keep the kids amused there is a miniature railway and play park area - we didn't use this as at only 6 months our little girl was a little young to appreciate either!
We parked in a multi-storey car park just close by. If you are in Buxton shopping, visiting or working then make time for an hour of tranquillity!
Buxton is a Spa town in Derbyshire, right on the edge of the Peak District National Park. People have come here since medieval times to enjoy the healing properties of the towns natural springs, and even before then it was a Roman Spa town. It is however probably true to say that it was during the Victorian era that Buxton was really transformed into a league of its own, and the resort began to flourish.
The Victorian period saw the arrival of the super rich businessmen and entrepreneurs and it was these people that began to flock here in their droves for recreational purposes. Prior to this, the wealthy citizens that had enjoyed Buxton had been largely restricted to the aristocracy.
In 1863 the railway arrived in Buxton and the 7th Duke of Devonshire, who owned the land on which the town was built, saw this as an ideal opportunity to develop the town further. He donated nine acres of his Estate to the town for recreational purposes and he set up a private fund, which Buxtons elite could contribute to. A Company was eventually created in the December of 1869 called the Buxton Improvement Company.
The development of the initial area of land in the centre of the town was to become known as the Pavilion Gardens, although the pavilion itself, which would become one of the focal points of the area, did not open until a couple of years after the Park was built, in August 1872. Following on from this The Concert Hall, now known as the Octagon, opened in 1875 and the Buxton Opera House opened in 1903.
The Park was designed by a well known landscape gardener called Edward Milner and opened the public on the 11th May 1871. This was a remarkably short time since work had only began on landscaping the area in December 1869. Further Ducal gifts had extended the final area of the Park to 23 acres.
The Gardens were designed in a typical Victorian style with an ornamental lake in the centre, and vast areas of neatly cut grassy areas interspersed with eye-catching flowerbeds. The river Wye flows the Park and feeds the lake and three different bridges were erected to cross this stream at various points.
Today, the Pavilion Gardens attracts over half a million visitors every year and the Gardens could truly be described as an oasis in the town centre. In 1997 a restoration projection began to return these Gardens back to their original Victorian style. This project was supported, and partly financed by, money from the National Lottery Heritage Fund.
During this restoration project all of the existing flowerbeds were carefully restored and pathways were cleared. A miniature railway was installed around the Park and a Childrens Adventure Playground was also created.
Each year the Pavilion Park plays hosts to over a hundred different events. These include fairs, festivals and exhibitions. There is also a farmers market that takes place here every month.
The Pavilion Park is a popular destination for newlyweds to have their photographs taken. There is a Victorian Bandstand in the Park and every Sunday during the Summer there is a brass band that plays here.
There is a large multi-storey pay and display car park located next to the park which has 270 spaces, 8 of these on the lower level are suitable for disabled parking. There are toilets within the multi-storey car park and further toilets within the Park, both of these are equipped with facilities for the disabled.
Entry to the Park is free and it is open every day, except Christmas Day. Opening times vary but the Park is generally open from 10am until 5pm.
I always try and make a point of visiting the Pavilion Gardens whenever I am in Buxton. It is a good place to get away from the hustle and bustle of the town, although if the weather is good then the Park can get very crowded. The lake is currently full of Ducks and there is a resident pair of Swans. When I was here during the summer there were also quite a few baby Ducklings too.
One problem that I have found here however is that if the weather is not so good then there are very few places to shelter and all of the seating is out in the open.
If you are ever in Buxton you cannot fail to find the Pavilion Gardens, they are located directly behind the Buxton Opera House which dominates the centre of the town.
Tranquil gardens surround the beautiful historic venue which hosts a variety of fairs and events.