Parks and play areas

Cartledge Close Play Area, Dereham NR19 1PW

A small play area surrounded by housing, accessed down a footpath near to the bottom of Cartledge Close. Has some good quality wooden climbing and balancing equipment and a picnic table. Parking is on street or in the residents’ car park at the end of Cartledge Close.

Dereham Recreation Ground, off Station Road, Dereham NR19 1AE

Conveniently situated between Station Road and London Road, this playing field has a large range of facilities. In addition to four tennis courts, there is a skate park, a basketball goalpost, mini goal posts and an enclosed playground. The playground is well equipped and well maintained. Access by car is from the London Road and there is off-road parking. On foot, the recreation ground is easily accessed from Station Road, Commercial Road, London Road and within easy walking distance of the town centre and other local attractions.

Ellenor Fenn Garden

This garden was created in the centre of Dereham on a piece of formerly derelict land and opened in September 2021. It was designed to be a space for community use – and features several benches as well as grassed areas, footpaths and flower beds. The garden has a children’s area at one end, with a blackboard and bug hotels, bird houses and a hedgehog house! The new garden is named after the 18th century teacher, writer, artist and philanthropist, Ellenor Fenn, who not only lived in Dereham but also started a Sunday School here. Ellenor also published more than 50 books and designed educational toys to help parents when they are teaching their children. The new space can be booked for community events and has already seen a Christmas Fair, craft markets, choirs and a day of buskers for the Dereham Blues Festival in July. CLICK HERE TO MAKE A BOOKING. See also:

Girling Road Play Area, off Sandy Lane, Dereham NR129 2NP

The playground is set in a enclosed area at one end of a pleasant landscaped playing field. Although small, the play equipment is in good condition and includes swings, a slide and various climbing equipment. If arriving by car, parking is nearby on street.

Hillcrest Avenue, Dereham NR19 1XU

This play area has been completely upgraded and now features a range of ‘adventure’ apparatus suitable for older children and teenagers. It still has the original enclosed play equipment for younger children, but now also boasts wooden climbing and balancing frames, a zip wire, swings and slides and mini soccer and basketball nets. The equipment is very substantial and good quality, set out over a wide area on all three sides of the Toftwood Community Fishing Pond in a very attractive setting with several footpaths. Parking is on street.

Moorgate Play Area, off Moorgate Road, NR19 1QB

Set in a huge playing field which it shares with Dereham Rugby Football Club and next to the Moorgate Allotments, this is an extensively equipped play area for children of all ages. It can be accessed on foot via a pathway from Moorgate Road, near the junction with Southend and South Green, a walk of approximately 5 minutes. Alternatively, there is a footpath to the adjacent allotments which leads through lovely landscaped gardens from Russet Way. The nearest parking is at the end of South Green Gardens where you can access the play area directly via a flight of steps, or, at the other end of the playing field there is a large car park behind the rugby club at the very end of Moorgate Road.

Neatherd Moor Play Area, Neatherd Road, Dereham NR20 4AQ

Neatherd Moor is a large area of moorland on the NNE side of Dereham town, but not far from the town centre. It is criss-crossed with small streams and footpaths and gradually gives way to farmland. At the intersection of Neatherd Road and Crown Road is a parking area. This is right next to the playground and the attractive duck pond. The playground is very well equipped with a large range of equipment for climbing, swinging, balancing and even a zip wire.

Neatherd Moor now extends almost as far as Etling Green and the town council will ensure it is conserved as a green lung for Dereham, with its numerous footpaths and ephemeral ponds in order to protect and increase the diversity of wildlife on the site.

Old Hall Road Play Area, off Shipdham Road, Dereham NR19 1JL

Although situated right next to Toftwood Village Hall, this playground is not accessible from the Village Hall, but can be accessed via a footpath a little further along the Shipdham Road. If approaching by car, it is best to park on Old Hall Road (at approx NR191SE) and walk across the field that is bounded on two sides by a stream. You must cross the bridge to reach the play area and then on looking back you can see how beautiful the setting is. The play area itself is small.

Queen Mother’s Garden

Queen Mother's Garden

The Queen Mother’s Garden was dedicated to the mother of Queen Elizabeth II and was opened by the Queen Mum in person in 1983. At the time it was a walled garden and it was laid out for recreational use and a quiet spot to sit and reflect.

In 2022 the town and district councils agreed it was time to update the garden and replace some of the benches. A newly designed layout now includes new seating and picnic tables, a book exchange, a quiet corner for reflection and new information panels which commemorate the terrible Zeppelin raid on Dereham in September 1915 when five people lost their lives. See more at

Sandy Lane Play Area, Sandy Lane, Dereham, NR19 2EA

A small but tidy playground set in a larger field at the side of Sandy Lane and adjacent to the Gemini public House. Although there is no restriction on parking on Sandy Lane itself, the road is quite narrow and it would be better to walk or to park in the car park of the public house next door.

In January 2023 Breckland Council reopened the play area after a successful refurbishment with brand new equipment. The newly installed play equipment is very good quality and enclosed in a safe, fenced area.

School Lane and corner of Westfield Road, Dereham NR19 1HZ

This is a small enclosed playground next to the Toftwood Junior School on Westfield Road and set in a larger playing field at the corner with School Lane. There is some climbing and balancing equipment in the field as well as goal posts. Parking is on street.

Toftwood Recreation Ground and Play Area, Dereham NR19 1TB

Toftwood Recreation Ground can be found at the end of Recreation Road, Toftwood. It is the home of Toftwood United Youth Football Club and has two grass pitches, one mini, one full size, without floodlights. At one end of the playing field is a fenced playground with a limited range of play equipment. The ground can be accessed by car, via Recreation Road – but there is little on street parking. The edge of pitch parking is not opened except on match days. It is better approached on foot.