Bradgate Park, in Newtown Linford, is the ancestral deer park of the Grey family, of Lady Jane Grey fame, that has been given to the people of Leicester.
On warm days in the summer, it does, indeed, feel very much like a park, rather than open country, particularly along the course of the Lin stream, where children still fish and families still picnic. Get away from the stream, however, and you are on your own with the bracken, the deer, and the skylark.
The main route through is easily accessible, from the car park at Newtown Linford, by the church, along the course of the stream, to the ruins of Lady Jane Grey’s house, and then on to the far side of the park at Cropston Reservoir.
If you want to just do this lower routr, go outside of holidays and week-ends.
If you are more adventurous, and have a powerful scooter or strong pusher, you can turn up any of the routes up to the left, but be prepared to turn back, as not all routes are passable. If you can, get to the summit of the Park, at the Victorian folly tower o9f Old John, where there are superb views of most of Leicestershire.
The rock outcrops in the Park are pre-cambrian volcanic, and are amongst the oldest rocks in the country.
The oak trees you see along the lower path are also extremely ancient. They were here when Jane was executed in 1554. Her gamekeepers beheaded the oaks in the Park, to commemorate her death, and this is why they have grown so twisted.