Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council Health and Recreation Department

Gosford Forest Park

Markethill
Gosford Forest Park

Armagh City, Banbridge & Craigavon Borough Council is taking over the management of Gosford Forest Park on 1st January 2019. We look forward to meeting our customers, providing excellent services and developing a further range of activities in the Forest Park. More info to follow. If you would like to join our mailing list please click here.

Online bookings campsite coming soon

Please select a section below to find out more about facilities at Gosford Forest Park

Accessibility

There are car parking facilities at this site. There is also toilet facilities, disabled facilities and a baby change facility.

Forest

Gosford Forest Park, previously Gosford Demesne, was acquired by the Department of Agriculture in 1958 and comprises some 240 hectares of diverse woodland and open parkland.

Keep your eyes peeled for the woodland animals, birds and insects that live here; red squirrels, woodpeckers and butterflies to name a few.

Event Fields

The Forest offers two unique spaces for hire.

  • Event Field

The field covers an area of approximately 22.6 hectors of open grassland, divided into several smaller fenced off areas. The fields are an ideal location for larger scale events including music festivals, International scout or guide camps, jamboree’s and much more. We are delighted to host the annual Armagh County Agricultural Show and its 20,000 visitors.

  • ‘L’ shaped field 

This field is an ideal location for small events including charity runs, community festivals and outdoor activities. This field is located adjacent to the function hall and education room providing both indoor and outdoor spaces so whatever the weather you will be able to run your event.

Rooms for hire

  • The Function Hall

Situated in the heart of the forest, this large hall caters for large and small groups. It is an ideal location for event briefings, lunch breaks or a base to run team building sessions. Facilities include a small kitchen with a hot water boiler, tables and chairs. The hall opens out onto the ‘L’ shaped field where events and games can be played.

  • The Education room

The Education room is a small room in the same location. The room is a perfect space for educational sessions, training courses and informal meetings. Facilities include tables and chairs.

Deer

Visit the Deer Park to get up close to Gosford’s resident Red Deer herd.

  • Red Deer

Originally a species of tree margins they can adapt to life in a wide range of habitats. These can vary from exposed treeless hills and glens to sheltered broadleaved woodland to fields. They are browsers and grazers feeding on leaves, twigs, grasses and heather depending on the area in which they live in. Native to British Isles and the largest wild animal in Ireland. Descendants of the old pure strain of Irish Red Deer still exist in Co.Kerry.

As there are now no natural predators on deer, their numbers need to be controlled by man in order to prevent serious damage to agricultural and forestry crops. Since the late 1960’s the Forest Service has  implemented a professional and humane deer management policy. The objectives are to achieve efficient crop protection while always considering the welfare of the deer. Other management considerations such as sport stalking and venison production are secondary.

 

Play Park

The play park in Gosford was installed in 2015 and is designated as a District play park. The equipment offers and supports a range of play opportunities for children and young people between the ages of 2 – 14 (children should always be accompanied by an adult).

Within the park there are swings, springers along with junior and senior climbing units. This quality play park facilitates interesting and stimulating play experiences for children in the natural setting of Gosford Forest Park.

The play park is adjacent to the main carpark and the public toilets are less than 25 metre away.

BBQ & Picnic facilities

There is space provided for visitors to have a BBQ as well as lots of room for families to have picnics, perfect for warm summer evenings.

DSNI All out Trekking - Bike Hub

Mountain Biking

Discover the wider forest by following the Green or Blue graded family mountain bike trails, including optional technical sections, a Skills Loop and a Pump track.

biking

Walking & Running

Choose from 4 unique trails exploring the Arboteum, Deer Park, Castle and woodland over a range of distance and terrain. Follow Gosford’s 5km waymarked running loop around the woodland.

Ti (2)

Horse Riding

Saddle up to enjoy a 6km route around the forest boundary starting at the Horse Trail Car Park beside the Forest Office.

horseriding

Pump Track

Whether a beginner or an experienced rider, the pump track is a fun way to improve your riding skills.

IMG_1635
Walking Trail

Walking Trail

Mountain Bike Trails

Mountain Bike Trails

Horse Riding Trails

Horse Riding Trails

Play Park

Gosford Play Area

Gosford Play Area

District Play Area

Enjoy the Outdoors Responsibly

All mountain bikers should also be responsible towards other users of the forest and the surrounding environment.

The Leave No Trace programme is designed to help outdoor enthusiasts value the natural environment and to understand the impact of our activities.

The Green Dog Walkers Pledge is a friendly way to tackle dog fouling issues in the Armagh City, Banbridge & Craigavon Borough Council area.

Mountain bike trails are graded by difficulty, allowing riders to choose which trail is most suited to their own ability.

trail grade

Situated in the heart of the forest, some 240 hectares of diverse woodland and open parkland, the caravan and camping park offers a place to relax, socialise and enjoy Mother Nature. Open 365 days a year, this family friendly site has something for everyone, children’s play park, walking, pony and mountain bike trails, a pump track, or simply enjoy the wildlife or learn about the history of Gosford Castle and its historical features.

gosford

Site A and B

The Forest has two caravan sites:

Site A – is the main park with 40 hard standing pitches with electricity hook-ups and access to the amenity block.

Site B – is located on the edge of the forest and away from the hustle and bustle of the main forest. This area hosts 11 hard standing pitches and chemical disposal unit but no amenities. There is no electricity at Site B.

Camp Sites

  • Main Campsite 

The main campsite accommodates 11 pitches. They are not marked out so please be mindful when pitching your tent and parking your car. Close to the amenity block and function hall, the site is ideal if you are hosting or taking part in an event.

  • Youth Campsite

The youth site is located a short distance from the main campsite and overlooks the main event field. This area is available for youth organisation whose leaders have been AccessNI checked www.nidirect.gov.uk/campaigns/accessni-criminal-record-checks. To book this location please contact the Forest Office. You may wish to consider hiring in a portaloo for the duration of your stay.

Facilities

  • Online Booking
  • Open all year round
  • Car Parking facilities
  • Electricity Supply to pitch (Site A)
  • No awning charge
  • Disability Access
  • Credit/Debit Card
  • Pets Accepted (on a leash)
  • Chemical disposal unit
  • Toilets and showers onsite
  • Free access to the Forest
  • Full use of the Multi-purpose trails and children’s play area

Caravanning

Caravan

Caravan + Electricity (Site A Peak) – £20.00

Caravan + Electricity (Site A Off Peak) – £15.00

Caravan No Electricity (Site B Peak) – £16.00

Caravan No Electricity (Site B Off Peak) – £12.00

Caravan and Camping Club

Caravan + Electricity (Site A Peak) – £18.00

Caravan + Electricity (Site A Off Peak) – £13.50

Caravan No Electricity (Site B Peak) – £14.40

Caravan No Electricity (Site B Off Peak) – £10.80

Camping

Individual

Main Area – £7.50

‘L’ Shaped Area – £7.50

Youth Camp Site – £4.00

Tent x2/Family

Main Area – £12.00

‘L’ Shaped Area – £12.00

Tent x4/family

Main Area – £7.50

‘L’ Shaped Area – £16.00

Additonal Adult

Main Area – £6.50

‘L’ Shaped Area – £6.50

Site A & Site B

How to make a Booking

A booking can be made by contacting the Forest Office on +44 (0)28 755 1277 or email Gosfordforest@armaghbanbridgecraigavon.gov.uk

Events/Room Hire

Bank Holidays will be charged at double the normal rate.

Additional staff will be charged at £15.00ph.

One off large scale events £800.00

Commercial

Full Forest & Event Field – £600.00

Half Forest & Event Field – £300.00

‘L’ Shaped field per event – £65.00

Function Hall (per hour) – £20.00

Education Room (per hour) – £12.00

Boot Camp (April – Sept) – £230.00

Boot Camp (Oct – March) – £170.00

Wedding Photo – £30.00

Non-Commercial

Full Forest & Event Field – £300.00

Half Forest & Event Field – £150.00

‘L’ Shaped field per event – £65.00

Function Hall (per hour) – £20.00

Education Room (per hour) – £12.00

Event Fields

The Forest offers two unique spaces for hire.

  • Event Field

The field covers an area of approximately 22.6 hectors of open grassland, divided into several smaller fenced off areas. The fields are an ideal location for larger scale events including music festivals, International scout or guide camps, jamboree’s and much more. We are delighted to host the annual Armagh County Agricultural Show and its 20,000 visitors.

  • ‘L’ shaped field 

This field is an ideal location for small events including charity runs, community festivals and outdoor activities. This field is located adjacent to the function hall and education room providing both indoor and outdoor spaces so whatever the weather you will be able to run your event.

Rooms for hire

  •  The Function Hall

Situated in the heart of the forest, this large hall caters for large and small groups. It is an ideal location for event briefings, lunch breaks or a base to run team building sessions. Facilities include a small kitchen with a hot water boiler, tables and chairs. The hall opens out onto the ‘L’ shaped field where events and games can be played.

  • The Education room

The Education room is a small room in the same location. The room is a perfect space for educational sessions, training courses and informal meetings. Facilities include tables and chairs.

Gosford Pricing Structure

Car

  • 15 Minutes Drop Off/Collect – Free
  • All day  – £5.00
  • Annual Pass – £25.00
  • Annual Pass (Concess.) – £16.25
  • Gold Pass (Gosford and Loughgall) – £33.00
  • Gold Pass Concess (Gosford and Loughgall) – £21.45
  • Replacement Pass – £7.50

Motor Cycle

  • 15 Minutes Drop Off/Collect – Free
  • All day  – £2.50
  • Annual Pass – £12.50
  • Annual Pass (Concess.) – £8.50
  • Replacement Pass – £7.50

Mini Bus

  • 15 Minutes Drop Off/Collect – Free
  • All day  – £10.00
  • Annual Pass – £50.00
  • Annual Pass (Concess.) – £32.50

Coach

  • 15 Minutes Drop Off/Collect – Free
  • All day  – £15.00
  • Annual Pass – £55.00
  • Replacement Pass – £7.50

Horse Box

  • 15 Minutes Drop Off/Collect – Free
  • All day  – £7.50
  • Annual Pass – £55.00
  • Replacement Pass – £7.50

Concession Rates

A concession rate of 65% of full activity price should be implemented and those eligible will:

  • Anyone in Full-time education
  • Individuals with a disability: Registered disabled in receipt of relevant documentation
  • Senior Citizens (over 60)

 

  • Carers

Where an individual with a disability is accompanied by a carer – free use will be granted to the carer where the caring responsibility does not allow the carer to enjoy the activity themselves (e.g. caring for an individual with a severe disability).

Where caring responsibilities allow the Carer to also participate in and enjoy activities the Carer will pay the concession rate.

If you have queries about visiting Gosford Forest Park, then please do not hesitate to contact us by one of the methods below:

Opening Hours

January-February – 9.00am – 4.30pm

March-May –  9.00am – 7.00pm

June-September –  9.00am – 9.00pm

October-December – 9.00am – 4.30pm

From Belfast

From Portadown

From Lurgan

Northern Ireland Guided Tours

A team of established, experienced, professional local guides are there to show you more of what Northern Ireland has to offer.

  • 41 Coolmilish Road, Markethill, Co.Armagh, BT60 1SH
  • info@guidedtoursireland.com
  • 028 3755 1119

Gosford Karting

Founded in 1995, Gosford Karting has been offering excellent karting experiences ever since.

  • 92 Gosford Road, Markethill, Armagh, BT60 1RH
  • www.gosfordkarting.com
  • 028 3755 1248

Horse Riding

Millers Hill is a BHS approved equestrian business run by the McCrum family. It is located approximately 1.5 miles from the village of Markethill.

  • 5 Dunesmullan Road, Markethill, Armagh, BT60 1TJ
  • 028 3755 1819

Lurgaboy Adventure Centre

Lurgaboy Adventure Centre is one of Northern Ireland’s leading Team building and Outdoor pursuits providers.

  • 12 Gosford Road, Collone, Armagh, BT60 1LQ
  • www.lurgaboyloadge.com
  • 028 3755 2425

Time Out Cafe

Friendly little café, located in the small town of Markethill.

  • 1 Fairgreen Road, Markethill, Armagh, BT60 1PW
  • www.timeoutcafe.co.uk
  • 028 3755 2052

Olde Thatch Coffee Lounge

Here you will find a tasty range of home-made savoury dishes, cakes and scones, all of which go perfect with a morning coffee.

  • 3 Keady Street, Markethill, Armagh, BT601PN
  • 028 3755 1261
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