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Visiting Yorkshire Sculpture Park - Bretton Hall


Distance 35 miles from Haworth
Travel time by car/public transport Car; about 1 hour, car park at the sculpture park.
Bus train walking; about 2.5 - 3 hrs, journey planner: http://www.yorkshiretravel.net/JourneyPlanner
Location Bretton Hall, West Bretton, Wakefield WF4 4LG. Tel: 01924 830302. Grid ref: N53° 36. 800 W001°34. 501 Map here...
Elevation Grounds: lowest 355ft - highest 421ft
Date visited 21/08/2004
Length of visit 4hrs
Website www.ysp.co.uk

Yorkshire Sculpture Park Visitor Centre Walk of Life

As of January 2009:

Free entry but if you take a car it costs £4:00 for a days parking. Blue badge holders park free of charge.

Opening Times:

Winter Open daily winter 2009.
Grounds, Centre + shop 10-5
Restaurant 10-4
(Hot food served) 11.30-3
Indoor Galleries 10-4 during exhibitions
Longside Gallery Closed
Car park locked 5.30

Exhibitions The YSP holds many different exhibitions each year, see their website for details.

Yorkshire Sculpture Park Visitor CentreYorkshire Sculpture park is set in the grounds of the Bretton Estate Wakefield which was designed in the 18th and 19th centuries. The park is 500 acres ranging from wooded areas to open spaces providing a landscape for modern and contemporary sculptures by artist's from around the world. Take a 360 degree view by Barbara Hepworth's sculpture family of man, bronze 1970 here...

There is car parking next to the Visitor Centre, parking charges as of April 2007 are £4:00 a day for a car, there is disabled parking and limited access in some areas, tel: 01924 830302 for details.

The Visitor Centre has a shop, restaurant and toilets. Café is good with a nice terrace to walk out on to.
Parts of the grounds are accessible by pushchairs and wheelchairs, if you have mobility difficulties you can book a scooter which is free, tel: 01924 830302 for details.

The park is a great place to see outdoor sculpture in a natural setting anytime of the year, going on a wet day is not advisable as there is not much to do inside. The sculpture park is a good place to take children as they can run about and explore the grounds finding different works.
The sculptures can be tempting for children to play on but the sculpture park code is: "You look and touch, but do not climb or sit on the sculptures."

Antony Gormley: One and OtherAllow plenty of time as you can walk for miles we covered 4.5 miles in the 4 hours we were there. Café and restaurant facilities are good, if you take children it is worth taking food and drinks as it can be some distance to the nearest facility. You can picnic in the grounds the sculpture park code is: "Picnicking is permitted in specific areas only; please use the litter bins provided or take your litter home with you." Other guidelines are: Dogs must be kept on leads at all times and within the designated areas and are not allowed in the buildings, ball games, cycling, horse riding or kite flying are not allowed. Photo left: Antony Gormley: One and Other.

Shaun Pickard "Unnatural" 1999, NeonThere is a good free guide with a map of the park, but we found it nice to wander about as the place took us. Signage could be better, some places we went to we were not sure if we were going in the right direction at times, also some of the exhibits were not labeled. Photo left Shaun Pickard "Unnatural" 1999, Neon.

A Brief History of Modern SculptureRonald Rae: Horse 1994, Granite
August Rodin (1814-1917) is generally accepted as the first modern sculptor, some of his works were criticised for their lack of finish, one of his famous works "the Kiss" 1901 -4 the stone block is left uncarved allowing us to see the figures as "emerging out" while appreciating the quality of the natural stone. Picture right Ronald Rae: Horse 1994, Granite.

Artists such as Constantin Brancusi (1876-1956) began to work directly with the material, his approach was to reduce the "language" of an object such as a bird, fish or head, and abstract to a pure form which was appropriate to the quality of the material he was working with.

Henry Moore: Reclining Mother and Child. 1975 -76 BronzeHenry Moore (1898-1986) and Barbara Hepworth (1903-1976) took the idea of abstracting the form and emphasised it in the organic shapes of their works. They were also interested that the solid mass has a relationship with empty space and expressed this by using empty hollows in their sculptures. Picture left Henry Moore: Reclining Mother and Child. 1975 -76 Bronze. Barbara Hepworth: Square with Two Circles, 1963, Bronze

Picture right Barbara Hepworth: Square with Two Circles, 1963, Bronze.

Artists such as Anthony Caro (born 1924) used materials such as steel to explore scale shape and colour to challenge the notions of the way we look at the work. Picture lower left: Anthony Caro: Promenade, 1996, painted steel.

Anthony Caro: Promenade, 1996, painted steelArtists have continued to explore ideas using different materials. Artists such as Richard Long and Andy Goldsworthy (referred to as land artists) use the environment; mud leaves stones, and arrange into sculpture which can have a limited permanence.

Barry Flanagan: Field Day 2, 1990, Bronze
Barry Flanagan: Field Day 2, 1990, Bronze


Your Reviews:

How many sculptures are there in the park?

What a fantastic place to enjoy the outdoors and a range of interesting art work. Great for walking dogs and breathtaking views. What a shame it was spoilt by the disgraceful attitude and unprofessional manner of the security/park keeper on Chritmas Eve. We were walking our dogs, enjoying the morning when we were approached very aggressively by the 'park keeper' who immediately accused of jumping over a fence to get in the park (when we had actually walked in through a gate along with other walkers). Unknown to us the park was closed. Instead of approaching us in a calm manner, that rude man spoilt the whole beautiful walk.

we have been on a school trip here it was fab it was worth it

i really enjoyed goin to ysp because i love art it helps me to express myself also the sculpture park showed me different artist and their work. its amazing and i would love to go there again.

I enjoy ysp it was the first time i went

it was kwl but we should have been alowed to roam free insead of styin wid teachers!!

i like it there its cool x

it was good tyler class6

I took a model there to do a photoshoot amongst the sculptures. The weather was terrible but we managed some lovely photos. I will definately go again when the weather is better, it was a lovely place.

I went to ysp last week with school.I went around with a group and we had a great time especially at the beginning.Nathan aged 8


I love ysp.I went with my school class.It was great. maisie age 7

I used to work at the 'Culture Spark' as we used to call it,under a gvt scheme in the early eighties. One of my tasks was to wash bird crap of the sculptures with warm soapy water and a sponge. On a sunny day (they all were!)the marble torso in the formal gardens was invitingly warm - it took a good spliffworth of walk to get there from the studio - spliff, warm marble, soapy spongeiness, gorgeous environment - ah, what larks!

i went there it was spectaculer. i realy loved it i went with my school. from michael and jonathan

My broher and I went today, he is 82 and I am 80/ we did the lakesand up Oxley Mount. Pamaramas are briliant, whole areais a joy

hi i cant wait to go me and my year is going to go to it for our art work i though it might be boring but reading your reviwes i think i might like it

i live in wakefield and have been a few times before. i last went with my college for our diploma in graphic design. it was a good day but would have been better if it wasnt raining really bad. this is really a great place to go and learn too.

I went to YSP with my class today and it was brilliant! Thanks!

swillington primary school yr3 are going hear on a school trip and this place looks out sanding!

I love the YSP - have been with adult friends, with my Mum and my two young children (6 months and 2 years at the time) and again with friends and their children more recently (children aged 2 and four years by now) and I've enjoyed it everytime - the adults loved the peace and appreciated the sculptures which are great talking points whether you love or hate them. The kids loved the space to run about in, all the paths and woody areas to hide in and explore and being able to touch and interact with the sculptures. It's a great place for a day out and picnic (good weather helps) and if you want young kids to experience art and sculpture it's more welcoming to them than most art galleries where they have to be quiet and contained and usually can't touch! I've travelled around the park with a buggy, when I was very pregnant and in muddy conditions with small kids in wellies and managed in each case (although being pregnant with a buggy in muddy weather all together could be hard work!) The free shuttle bus to the Longside gallery is a great idea and we usually ride one way and then walk back. All in all - it's always been a great and cheap day out for all the family and is somewhere we'd go again and again. Elisa (HULL)

i have just been to the yorkshire sculpture park it was very good and it was made very well so you should go there i went with mickleover primary school i was talking to my teacher he was telling me all about it so you should go there it is very wellcoming brad x

this is the best trip ever that ive been to.
so all you people out there need to visit this wonderful place.......

i went to ysp with a couple of art groups from college. the sculptures were mad especially them andy goldsworthy ones. i would go again my son would love it. though i would have to rag him off the sculptures every 2 seconds...

at my age this place was truley magical and the garden of men (near the YSP centre) really inspired me into doing my very own sculpture

I my name is lucy i went 2 the yorkshire sculpture park with college i loved every minute of it the sculptors were amazing it was a nice day not 2 cold a long walk but worth it i would go again thank you x

We had a whole school trip out with reception class up to yr 2 we all had a fantastic day out the sculptures were amazing, the children absolutely loved it! They took sketch books with them I think we have some Andy Goldsworthy's in the making.BRILLIANT!!!!!!

well i would av enjoyed it if i didnt get lost with my mate we got lost for 2hours because our teachers left us and we didnt know were we was going otherwise we wouldnt have got LOST!! lol lv fan at 15 xx otherwise i would go again.


im 15 and i went with school for my art GCSE and i thought it was awsum!!!

I thought the park was wonderful, especially the exhibitions by Andy Goldsworthy. His work is fantastic.

I totally agree about the car thing, I am a bit sick of people assuming everyone drives. Please sort it out and do the research YSP so that I don't always have to ring the bus company! On the bright side, enjoyable day, didn't expect that i would be so impressed with the work there....

I love Andy Goldsworthy's work, especially that at the Longside Gallery. The hoof prints on canvas were amazing, particularly following the theme of the holes and windows through.

I believe this perticular scuplture park is amazing we are visiting here on a school trip and everyone in my class carn't wait, its looks really cool!!!

i went with my school its was pritty cool i have now come on this site to do home work to reasurch the fantastic sculputes
not only is it fun its educational aswell!

We went to see all Andy Goldsworthy’s work at Bretton Sculpture Park, some is amazing, but I have a criticism of the stone circle in Hasty Bank Wood. The central space in the wood was once a quiet place with a sketchy path and overgrown with many flowers, people usually went around this wood leaving it peaceful, long tailed tits and many other birds occupied the trees.

An ugly scar, a wide path, and this pointless stone circle now have shattered that peace. Why ? I believed Andy Goldsworthy respected nature, this is hard to understand in this instance.
Whilst there we saw people broadening the path, trampling down bluebells and breaking branches, and climbing dangerously onto the stone circle in an attempt to see what is inside.

I am an art and nature lover, but sadly this installation makes no sense ! It seems to be a shrine to Andy Goldsworthy rather than respecting the quality and atmosphere of the wood itself.

Are the organisers (on their website) incapable of telling visitors how to get there - or have I missed something? And is it just assumed that art lovers must drive there to reach it?

Alright, i enjoyed my day out n would go again. it ws cold n wet n muddy n Class !!!
beasty sculptures.

i am 7 and i thought it was a great day out. I WANT TO GO AGAIN !!!!!!!!!!

the park is wonderfull and gr8 for all ages the art is amazing and i would go again!!!!!!!!

the sculpture park is great i went there on a school trip. it was cool looking at all the art work artisis have done im from lverpool and all that journey goin there i though it was going to be rubbish but it wasentxxx


it was wet. and cold. and muddy. but the sculptures were all really good and it was really interesting, i especially liked henry moore's work.

Visited on Saturday 13.1.07 on bright very windy day. Because I'm disabled I couldn't walk very far but enjoyed what I saw of the craft exhibitions and a few sculptures. Had a pleasant meal in restaurant but sadly couldn't afford to buy anything in the gift shop! Will visit again when I'm in Yorkshire again. Angela, aged 67 from Bristol

i thought it was brilliant and well worth a visit

it seem very nice but not my taste of art. i had to go on a college trip and thought it would be quite good but turned out to be alittle boring to me

it was very fun. the sculptures where magnificant, it will be a day to remember.

i love going to the ysp and i allways go for a birtthday treat xxx

I went here on a school trip for the day. I went today. I thought the exhibitions in the underground gallery were the best. The trip was very interesting and fun. I had a really good time and I will definately visit again. xx Kim xx xage 13x

this is a good website and i really got alot of help from it


Very nice to visit. Liked what we saw, lots of lovely old trees. Sculptures were too spaced out and we missed seeing lots. Family did not enjoy walking through a field of sheep and their poo to see sculptures! Would like to go back sometime.

Very good, enhjoyed making my own scultor their with school.

I found it very good for young children, as they have complete freedom to roam around, but I feel that it would be benificial to have more interactive pieces for them to enjoy (incidently the one that used to play tunes was not working).

I have just visited the the park for the first time and i found the walks and scenery astounding i will going on regular basis now.
By the way i am slightly disabled having suffered polio 51 years but found park and walk easily accessable.

Stan williams

we have been on college trips here several times.Each time we have visited the trip has been well worth visiting!!!! keep up the good work!!!!

An absolutely facinating place to visit. A very peaceful and thought inspiring place. I did feel though that I was going in the wrong direction at times. I do not feel signs are the answer but perhaps an architectural language that is subtle and ties a ribbon (hypothetical) around the park.

Andy age 24 - Architecture Student

As myself being a young 14 year old girl interested in art and taking it for GCSE, i have 2 be honest and say that i thought the sculpture park was going to be one of mum's boring days out but i was pleasantly surprised and enjoyed myself a lot at the park!! Highly recommened to others of my age!

A unique experience, important for personal development, bradlen

Hi i loved the ysp i went with my school st aidans in carlisle i thought it was great i am 14 i loved the way the sculptures clashed with the senery it gives it that added touch, i am doing art gcse and a project onj the ysp hopefully i will get good marks thanxz xx allie louz

I went to the sculpture park for my gcse's most people did not like it but idid my fav pieces was Promenade, and most of Barbara Hepworth's work it was a great experience, when we went through certain paths we got lost and started to scare people i think it is a great place and recommend it for other schools if they haven't already gone. xxx lol Aimy lola kay!! YSP

i went to YSP to look at Barbara Hepworth's sculptures for my art coursework. it was a really interesting experience. love lauren x

My fiance Ed proposed to me in the Sculpture Park and we are planning to have our wedding photos here! A really great place for all.

Jane, Worthing


In preparation for a sculpture project, I visited the park with the other art students. It was great fun, and we got some great info and sketches. There was a huge variety of sculptures there, and I would say that it is definitely worth a visit if you haven't been before!

it was a really interesting experience! i would definatly go again!

i went there with my kids they loved it was an excellent experience for them and me the sculptors there are just facinating. overall its a great place to go


...i went to the YSP wiv brinky college form hartlepool ...were studyin henry moore for our art work the YSP was the perfect place with helping ...would love to go again ...mite need wellies next time!! smilerxox

Very impressive place.
Lots of quality sculptures by quality artists
77, 78, 81, 84, 05
Champions of Europe

i went there on a school trip and it was awesome...really peaceful and quiet, i could have just sat there for hours drawing
even though we didnt get to see all of the park i would recommend this place to anyone.
zoe 16 years

I went here on a school trip with Dukeries collage it wasnt really my thing abit boring if you ask me lv me xxxxxxxxxxxx

I went here on a an art trip with Sherburn High School.
There is a lot of poo, so don't take your best shoes!
It was good, just wish i had more time to look around everything, only got 2hours to look around!
Dale Smtih xxx

i live realy close and i run through here evry week and it neva gets old! great place, very peaceful. leeds city runner

I went here with my school.
It was quite good.
I liked the sheep that were running round the best lol
Me x

I thought that it was an excellent place to go to for a Art school trip. Love to go again but this time just for fun not for work?
signed by the one the only Natalie.


i went here on a school trip not long ago, and even though i dont like art much it was a very nice. i personally didnt find the sculptures interesting, but thats because im not into that sort of thing. you can appreciate all the hard work and effort went into them all though. the landscape was very pretty and relaxing, and it was a very calm day with lots of thinking time. its even better if you go there with friends, there is so much time and space just to talk and be yourself and have fun.

i went to university in the grounds of the sculpture park. its a place i would recomend to anyone - even if you are not into art. there are beautiful walks, fantastic scenery and you learn something on the way... what more can you want? :o)

i've been onto different websites and they all make us feel that we want to go there but luckily we are going on a school trip here and i am really pleased that i have chosen this plave for the school children to learn!!!!

Overall the trip with my college to the Yorkshire Sculpture Park was adequate, however I wouldn’t like to go again as I found it fairly boring after five hours of walking about. I must admit I’m not that interested in sculptures but there was one piece I did quite enjoy. This was the interactive seats and floor. (The ones that play a tune as you walk on the floor and sit down on the chairs) that was fun.

A great place to bring the kids and just have fun!


it seems interesting but i wouldnt want to take take young children there they would get very restless and proberley moan alot!

I have just been to the park on a school trip. I thought it was very interesting. My favourite one was the very big one on the high hill. I will visit again, Peter Age 7

I went here and it was ok, but i didnt give it enough chance and didnt visit, antony gormleys "one or other"! which i regret because im a student and i have to do an essay on it!!! YSP is great, Barney

it seems very nice and plus we are going on a school trip here and i am pleased that we have chosen the best place !!!!


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