The 38 acre park donated to the citizens of Dundee by Sir David Baxter and his two sisters Mary Ann and Eleanor and was constructed over two areas of ground, the lower Park being a field and the upper, a disused quarry, which was filled in for use as a part of the construction.
The northern part was laid out as a pleasure garden with walks through open areas of grass and flower beds and the southern part as a parade ground. A large terrace running east-west, in front of the Sandstone Pavilion, linked the two parts.
Officially opened on 9 September 1863, the Park offered a green space to the public in the form of promenades, elaborately planted vistas and the large recreation ground.
The Baxter Park Restoration Plan was formed in 1995 to ensure its considered restoration to a safe and active community green space.
Through this scheme, the Park has seen many improvements with the restoration and upgrading of the Central Sandstone Pavilion, space has been created for a cafe and a beautiful setting for functions and events as well as civil weddings.
The creation of the Park Centre has given the local community a space for local events and activities. A small grassed amphitheatre is located to the rear of the Park Centre. This is used for band concerts in the summer.
The areas to the east and west of the Sandstone Pavilion are laid out with lawns and formal flower beds for hardy annuals and for herbaceous plants and grasses. Semi-circular beds to the north are planted with mainly evergreen shrubs such as Hebes, Prunes and Aruba and provide a backdrop to the lawns.
Formal beds containing roses have a Heuchera edge and beds on the partners have Asters and Geranium in them surrounded with Buxus hedging. These can be found at the main entrances. Topiary hollies are a feature along the terrace in front of the Pavilion.
Baxter Park retains much of the original tree planting and contains some fine old specimens, several of which are recognised as being the best examples in the UK. There are wonderful lime avenues and many other arboreal delights to discover.
There are information boards at the main entrances to the Park which provide up to date information about the Park, facilities and events.
The information boards display:
• Site Plan
• Neighbourhood Services contact number
• Management Rules
• Bus Numbers
• Local Park History
A bronze relief map of Baxter Park containing topographical information and main features with raised-text and Braille labels can be found at the main Arbroath Road entrance next to the triple-panel notice board.
This map was designed with and approved by visually-impaired organisations, including the RNIB. It is mounted within a vandal / theft resistant steel plinth designed to be wheelchair accessible.
A new fenced play area was built during the restoration, in the slope close to the Park Centre. The lower part is designed for younger children and the larger upper part, for slightly older children, features a big rope climbing net.
There are three tennis courts available based on a tarmacadam surface. The courts have open access all year with no cost for participants who wish to use the facility.
A Multi Use Games Area (MUGA) was constructed in the south of the Park on the site of a disused bowling green. This project was completed in 2015 with the facility officially opening in June 2015.
There is a good path network allowing access to all of the main buildings and features of the Park. Core paths cross the Park and provide links to the wider active travel network. This includes a promoted cycle route along Arbroath Road. A 1.5 mile walk circuiting the Park is included in one of the city's packs of Health Walks Cards. The packs feature walks all across Dundee and each card has a map and written directions, along with points of interest.
The Health Walk Cards can be accessed through Dundee City Councils website at www.dundeecity.gov.uk/outaccess/healthcards.
The Park Centre toilets are unisex and one is adapted, direct access to the toilets is through a door in the side of the building. A Toilet Attendant is employed during the Summer Season. At all other times of the year toilets are open to the public when Leisure Attendants are on site and when the Centre is open for an event.
The Main Sandstone Pavilion has male, female and adapted toilets for use by those using the Pavilion. As part of the restoration, a cafe was incorporated in the west wing and a reception area / registry office in the east wing, which allows the Pavilion to be used for many functions and ceremonies, including weddings. The Pavilion cafe has an adapted unisex toilet for the patrons of the cafe.
Enquiries for Wedding and Civil Ceremony Hire to:
Dundee House, 50 North Lindsay Street
Dundee DD1 1QE Map
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org (link sends e-mail)
Tel: 01382 307474
Enquiries for bookings for other events to:
Dundee City Council, 3 City Square
Dundee, DD1 3BA
Email: email@example.com (link sends e-mail)
Tel: 01382 436871