25th January 2012

Roundhay Park, Leeds

An interesting morning exploring Roundhay Park, a very large urban park of about 700 acres on the north side of Leeds. Originally a medieval deer park, it passed through a succession of owners including the Duke of Norfolk until acquired by one Thomas Nicholson, a successful merchant and banker. His investment in the early part of the 19th century created the lakes and other features that still exist in the present. From the visitor safety perspective, it appears that the whole park, using the Visitor Safety in the Countryside Group guiding principles, would be classed as heavily visited and under the old VSCG risk control matrix, as "urban". Significant hazards such as weirs and spillways are dealt with by fencing to a high standard, there are lifebuoys at regular and frequent intervals round the main Waterloo Lake, and there is copious signage - yet from distance, the signage and lifebuoys are not that visually intrusive.

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Waterloo Lake, view across the lake to the boathouse

Railings preventing falls from height into the main outflow

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Water safety precautions and signage

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