Visiting Waters’ Edge
Next to the Humber Bridge, on the waterfront at Barton upon Humber, you will find Waters’ Edge Country Park and Visitor Centre.
Our park is home to rich and varied wildlife including many rare and migratory birds.
Whether you are feeding the friendly ducks that live in the Visitor Centre Pond or spotting the wading birds that visit the larger ponds and the Humber bank, you’ll find something of interest.
You can follow a series of walks around the ponds, taking you through reed beds, woodlands and wild-flower meadows. Children will love the two adventure playgrounds and there is plenty of free parking.
The Visitor Centre is open seven days a week and admission is free. Designed to be one of England’s greenest buildings, it has interactive displays and games to educate families about caring for their environment and nature.
Waters’ Edge Country Park is set in 110 acres of picturesque woodland, wetland and wildflower meadows, split over two sites.
The first 86-acre site is home to the Visitor Centre. There are two Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI), 10 ponds, native woodlands, seven walks around the park and two adventure play grounds.
The second site is located across the Haven, at the Humber Bridge Viewing Area and is home to our Humber Bridge Walk route, two adventure play grounds, the Humber Bridge Viewing Area, wildflower meadows and woodland.
The Humber, one of Britain’s largest estuaries, supports abundant wildlife. Wildfowl occur in great numbers, while wading birds inhabit the mud of the foreshore and offshore.
In winter, Dunlin, Ringed and Grey Plover, Redshank, Knot and Bar-tailed Godwit all feed on the mud flats at low tide. In May and August, passage waders such as Curlew, Sandpiper and Whimbrel occur, whilst Black-tailed Godwit and Oystercatcher have been frequent visitors in recent winters.
The upper shore is clothed in salt marsh with cord-grass, sea plantain, scurvy grass and sea aster, there are also areas of common reed. Kingfishers are frequent here in winter and mixed flocks of finches may be seen feeding on the seeds of the salt marsh plants.
Freshwater lakes are important for wildlife and the clay pits provide some substitute for the great wetlands of Lincolnshire lost through drainage. The water at Far Ings is rich in microscopic life that provides food for many invertebrates, which in turn support fish such as eel, roach, rudd and perch. Heron, Grebes and Kingfisher then prey on the fish.
Many types of duck – including Mallard, Pochard and Tufted Duck – nest on the islands and margins. In winter many more wildfowl live here, including Wigeon, Teal, Goldeneye and Gadwall, Goosander and occasionally Smew. Great Crested Grebe, Little Grebe and Water Rail also nest here.
The Humber Estuary is important for nature conservation, with significant parts of the estuary designated as a Special Protection Area (SPA) under the Birds Directive. It is also an internationally important wetland site under the Ramsar Convention with the intertidal foreshore and some of the adjacent North Sea coastline identified as a potential SPA and proposed as a Ramsar site.
The estuary itself has been identified as a possible Special Area of Conservation (pSAC) under the Habitats Directive.
Sites designated under the Birds and Habitats Directives are collectively termed ‘Natura 2000’ sites. The directives, which are implemented in the UK principally through the Conservation (Natural Habitats etc) Regulations 1994, impose legal obligations on the UK government to protect the integrity and overall coherence of Natura 2000 sites.
Maintaining flood defences beside an estuary or the open coast can result in the loss of inter-tidal habitat. This can be either directly through the impact of maintenance or improvement works or indirectly due to the ‘coastal squeeze’ that will occur as sea levels rise if the defences are kept on their present alignment. To compensate for these losses large areas of the estuary have been identified for coastal realignment. This is a process by which the flood defences are removed from their present position and the estuary is allowed to reclaim the land.
Our well-stocked gift shop sells a range of handmade gifts, local interest books, ‘pocket money’ children’s toys and everything you need to spot wildlife. There’s a great selection of quirky gifts that you won’t find on the high street.
Waters’ Edge Country Park and Visitor Centre is less than a mile from the historic town centre of Barton upon Humber.
From the south: take the A15 to Barton upon Humber.
From the north: take the first exit after the Humber Bridge (A15), signposted Barton upon Humber.
Brown signs will direct you through the town to Waters’ Edge.
The country park is at the very end of Maltkiln Road and there is a large free car park immediately to the left as you enter the park.
If you are using a satnav, enter the postcode DN18 5JR into your device to navigate your way to Waters’ Edge.
There are regular services running to Barton upon Humber from Scunthorpe and Hull. Call Traveline on 08712 002233 or visit the Traveline website for details of bus services in the area. The nearest bus stop to Waters’ Edge is at Barton Railway Station, which is a short walk away along Maltkiln Road.
The P&O Ferries terminal at Hull is half an hour’s drive from Waters’ Edge. There are daily sailings from Zeebrugge and Rotterdam, please visit the P&O Ferries website for more information.
By cycle or on foot
From the Humber Bridge, leave the bridge and follow Far Ings Road towards Barton. Turn left at the Sloop Public House and follow Waterside Road until you reach the footbridge. Cross here and follow the path to the building. The centre can also be reached from the riverbank by following the paths to Barton Haven and crossing the footbridge.
A cycle rack is located next to the main entrance.
We hold a number of craft fairs during the year where you can take a table. We also have retail space available for hire in the building on a regular or occasional basis.
We hold themed craft fairs three times a year: a Valentine’s and Mother’s Day fair every February, an Easter Fair during Easter bank holiday weekend and a Christmas Fair in November. Crafters come from all over Lincolnshire and Yorkshire to exhibit at our fairs, so if you are looking for a unique gift or are even a crafter yourself, get in touch!
Waters’ Edge Visitor Centre and County Park is situated on the south bank of the River Humber. It showcases the wildlife and habitats of the Humber and includes two Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSIs). The visitor centre is located in 110 acres of country park. The main pathways are gravel or wooden walkways; all are at least 1.8m wide and designed to be suitable for push and wheelchairs.
The country park has a number of walks running through it, at differing lengths suitable for visitors of all ages and abilities. These are signposted around the park with coloured way markers and are also highlighted in the visitor leaflet which can be collected from reception. There are a number of lakes throughout the country park; some of which have deep water.
The visitor centre displays and facilities are based on the ground floor, although there is a lift to the first floor to allow business visitors access to the offices.
You can enjoy a rest at The Honey Pot Café and there is a shop selling a range of souvenirs. Both are located on the ground floor with step free access.
Members of staff are on hand at reception should you require any assistance. We look forward to welcoming you to the visitor centre and country park. If you have any queries or require any assistance please telephone 01652 631500 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
How to find us:
From the south; take the M180 (junction 5) on to the A15, north to Barton upon Humber, follow the A15 until you see the signpost ‘last exit before toll’. Take the slip road off the A15 onto the A1077 Ferriby Road into Barton. Follow the brown signs to Waters’ Edge, which is identified with the Country Park Symbol.
From the north: come south across the Humber Bridge (A15). Take the turning to Barton upon Humber. Follow the Brown signs to Waters’ Edge, which is identified with the Country Park Symbol.
On entering the park via the main gates, immediately to the left is the visitor car park, for disabled car parking spaces, continue to the visitor centre where reserved parking spaces can be found directly outside.
By ‘Sat Nav’:
Enter DN18 5JR. This will take you part way down Maltkiln Road, simply carry on to the end of the road. Enter the park and immediately to the left is the visitor car park, for disabled car parking spaces, continue to the visitor centre where reserved parking spaces can be found.
The nearest bus station is half a mile (20 min walk) from the visitor centre, located next to the Railway Station on Waterside Road. Call Traveline on 08712 002233 for details or visit www.traveline.info. Buses are accessible and can accommodate wheel and pushchairs.
The railway station is half a mile (20 min walk) from the visitor centre, Enquires 08457 484950 or visit www.nationalrail.co.uk.
P&O Ferries terminal at Hull is 45 minutes drive from Waters’ Edge. There are daily sailings to Zeebrugge and Rotterdam. Enquires 07805 202020, or visit www.poferries.com for more information.
By cycle or on foot:
From Barton town centre it’s about a mile to Waters’ Edge Visitor Centre, up Waterside Road and on to Maltkiln Road.
From the southern end of Humber Bridge, leave the bridge by the walk and cycle path slip way. Go along Far Ings Road towards Barton, turn left at ‘The Sloop’ public house and continue along Waterside Road until you reach the footbridge on your right hand side, cross there and take the steps down to the footpath. There is a cycle rack beside the main entrance for your convenience while you are visiting us.
From the Nev Cole Way walk along the riverbank from the west and follow the footpath up the Barton Haven until you reach the footbridge, cross there and take the steps down to the footpath.
Car parking and arrival
- There are four designated disabled parking bays directly outside the visitor centre. The car park surface is tarmac and there is a drop kerb for ease of access to the main entrance
- There is a large gravel car park on site, which can take 100 cars, approximately five minutes walk from the main entrance, leading to a paved pathway which leads to the main entrance
- There is a drop off point at the main entrance with a drop kerb
- The main entrance door is automatic and opens two metres wide
- There is a bus drop off and collection point for coaches with a raised access point only a minutes walk from the entrance to the visitor centre
Main entrance and reception area
- The main entrance is situated on the ground floor with level access throughout
- There is a hearing loop system installed at the counter
- The area is well lit from both natural light and from overhead fluorescent lighting
- The counter and reception desk area is clear from obstruction to aid lip reading and visitors with a visual impairment
- A pen and paper is available
- The shop is level throughout. There is ample room for a wheel or pushchairs to manoeuvre
Attraction (displays, exhibits)
- There are interactive displays throughout the visitor centre; all can be accessed from a sitting or standing position
- Interpretation boards are in large text, with some pictorial representation where applicable. All are at a maximum top height of 1.8 metres
- There is a range of hands-on and family activities
- There are camera feeds played on our video bank displays, and live cameras that visitors can use to look around the country park
- There are some wooden benches placed around the visitor centre
- The centre is well lit from natural light coming in from the large glass frontage, and from overhead fluorescent lighting
- Visitor toilets are located on the ground floor with level access from the display area
- There are both male and female toilets, a changing places toilet and an accessible toilet/baby changing facility with a light, easy open door to 90cms wide
- The toilets are well lit with fluorescent tube overhead lighting which operate automatically when someone enters
- The accessible toilet has an emergency alarm pull cord
- In the disabled toilet there is a one metre transfer point to the left of the toilet
- The toilet is 40cms high
- There is also colour contrast with critical surfaces; walls are red and the toilet and washbasins are white
- There are vertical rails either side of the toilet and wash basin and a horizontal rail on the side wall adjacent to the toilet
- All wash basins in the toilets are fitted with a lever tap for ease of use
- The flooring is non-slip tile
- Changing Places toilet installed January 2017 meeting the standards set at the time of installation
- A height adjustable, adult sized changing bench
- A track hoist system providing access to the toilet, washbasin, changing bench and open space to transfer
- Adequate space in the changing area for the disabled person and up to two carers
- A toilet placed in a peninsular arrangement, at least one metre away from the wall on either side.
- Wide tear off paper roll to cover the bench
- A height adjustable washbasin with a clear knee space below the bowl.
- Shower facility with floor drain and non-slip wet room floor
- The Honey Pot Café is situated on the ground floor and has a direct and level access from the display area and the rear entrance to the visitor centre via a sliding door
- The tables are well spaced, and the chairs are upright with no arms
- The flooring is resin based
- The café area is well lit from both natural light and overhead lighting
- The café takes orders via the counter and then the food is delivered to your table. Staff can assist on request
- The Honey Pot Café does its best to cater for all dietary requirements and where possible uses locally sourced foods. Please contact the café in advance to check any specific requests you may have on 01652 635 252
- Large print menus are available and staff can help by running through it with you
- Crockery is colour contrasted with the table where possible
- The nearest public toilet with an accessible WC is located within approximately 20 metres of the café
- There is a shop with a range of souvenirs and books, which can be accessed directly from the main entrance
- The shop is level throughout
- There is ample of room for both push and wheelchairs to manoeuvre
- Most displays are accessible from a seated position although one or two are at a higher level. Staff can offer assistance
- The counter has a hearing loop system installed
- Staff can offer assistance if required
- The country park is set in 110 acres overall and has a number of walks, at differing lengths suitable for visitors of all ages and abilities
- There are a number of lakes throughout the country park; some of which have deep water
- Walks are marked by coloured way markers, and these are also shown in the park leaflet, which is available from reception
- The main pathways are gravelled (and can be uneven underfoot in some places) or wooden walkways. All are at least 1.8 metres wide and designed to be suitable for both push and wheelchairs
- There are two wooden seating areas located at either end of the wooden boardwalk which crosses part of the main lake close to the visitor centre
- Areas to the side of the pathways are often left natural to encourage insects such as butterflies and unusual plants
- There are two children’s play areas located near to the main visitor car park
- There are large interpretation boards located around the park
- All of our staff receive regular training which includes disability awareness training
- In case of an emergency evacuation, we have set procedures. In the case of a fire you will be asked to leave the visitor centre by a fire warden. If you need assistance they will help you leave the centre and direct you to the nearest assembly point
- We do allow dogs in the country park, but they must be kept on a lead. Only assistance dogs can enter the visitor centre. We provide a water bowl at the main entrance for all dogs
- We can offer information on nearby accommodation if you need it
Waters’ Edge Visitor Centre
Barton upon Humber
Opening hours: The main park gates will be locked at dusk
Weekdays: 9am to 5pm
Weekends summer (April to September) 10am to 5pm
Weekends winter (October to March) 10am to 4am
Summer 10am to 4pm
Winter 10am to 3.30pm Food service stops at 3pm
April to September:
Monday to Friday: 9am to 5pm
Saturday and Sunday: 10am to 5pm
October to March:
Monday to Friday: 9am to 5pm
Saturday and Sunday: 10am to 4pm
Summer 10am to 4pm
Winter 10am to 3.30pm
Food service stops at 3pm