About Bretton Country Park
Bretton Estate includes the adjoining Yorkshire Sculpture Park, Bretton Hall and Bretton Lakes Nature Reserve.
The stunning landscape, which is home to the Yorkshire Sculpture Park (YSP), was designed over 200 years ago as a private pleasure ground. Much thought was given to the planting of thousands of imported exotic trees, to the modeling of hills and valleys and the use of water and architectural features. Split up in the late 1940s, the estate has in recent years, been brought together by YSP, providing open access and an integrated landscape management plan..
The Grade II listed Bretton Hall is a stately home within the park. The Hall was designed and built around 1720 by its owner, Sir William Wentworth. In 1949 the Hall became the site of Bretton Hall College, a teacher training college and later, an affiliated college of the University of Leeds. After a decision by Leeds University to close the Bretton Campus, Wakefield Council purchased the hall in 2007 with the hope that the building would be developed in the future to attract more visitors. In November 2007 it was announced that a Hotel and Spa development proposal, along with a proposed Centre for Creativity and Imagination, would undergo a consultation period in association with Rushbond Developers and the Yorkshire Sculpture Park.
The Hall and surrounding buildings, with the exception of the 200 year old Camellia plant House, are not open to the public. Visitors can explore the County Park and formal gardens which are home to some of the Yorkshire Sculpture Parks finest works.