Lofthouse Colliery Nature Park

Wakefield Countryside Events

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Lofthouse colliery memorial wheel

Lofthouse Colliery Nature Park has woodland, heathland, playing fields, and a pond. It is located 3 miles north of Wakefield.

  • Location:

    WF3 3SJ

    Open every day.

Facilities and services

  • Great place for a walk or a run on surfaced and muddy paths - please wear appropriate footwear
  • Cyclists and horse-riders welcome, but please keep to the surfaced tracks
  • Playing fields are great for football - they are used at weekends by Wrenthorpe Rangers FC
  • The pond is leased by Wakefield Angling Club and members can fish on one bank only
  • The opposite bank is left undisturbed as a refuge area for wildlife

Historical interest

Lofthouse Colliery was the lifeblood of the local community for over a hundred years. The two shafts were sunk between 1873 and 1877, and by 1895 the colliery was producing over 1000 tons of coal per day. Being so close to the GNR Railway, it was originally called Lofthouse Station Colliery.

Most of the paths around the site are named after the various coal seams that were worked at Lofthouse Colliery. The Lofco path was named after the famous Lofco system of minecar handling equipment that was invented at Lofthouse Colliery in 1945. This system was a great success and was used in pits throughout Britain.

On 21 March 1973, a disaster occurred at Lofthouse that was to change British mining dramatically. A coalface collapsed and flooded when the coal-cutting machine sheared into old mine workings. Sadly, seven men died. The disaster led to sweeping changes in mining legislation.

Adults and children in front of a winding wheel

Nature conservation

This former pit site was restored in the late 1980s and is now a growing deciduous woodland of native species, mainly birch and oak trees. The woodland supports a range of birds, including:

  • Woodpeckers, 
  • Bullfinches,
  • Blackcaps
  • Chiffchaffs 
  • Cuckoos (during the summer)

Lofthouse Colliery marsh

The heather-rich area of lowland heathland by the railway line is unusual for the area. A heathy grassland on the highest part of the park also contains heather as well as a variety of wildflowers such as:

  • Common Centaury
  • Yellow-Wort
  • Bird's-Foot Trefoil 

There is a colourful display of Lupins in the early summer.


The Lofthouse Colliery Action Group helps the Countryside Officers to improve and maintain the park. They meet regularly to undertake practical improvements to the site. Activities include clearing scrub from the heathland, planting wildflowers, clearing vegetation from around the pond and picking litter. New volunteers are always welcome.

Visit the Lofthouse Colliery Action Group Facebook page for further details about the Friends group.

If you are interested in local volunteering opportunities on this and other sites, please get in touch.

Contact Us

Waterton Countryside Discovery Centre Anglers Country Park Haw Park Lane Wintersett Wakefield WF4 2EB

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