Plan your visit
Toilets: Open daily, 9.30am-5pm.
Café: Open daily, 9.30am-5pm (take away refreshments only)
- Christmas Eve: visitor centre, shop and toilets are closed. Car park and trails open 6am- 6pm.
- Christmas Day: visitor centre, shop and toilets are closed. Car park and trails open 6am- 6pm.
- Boxing Day: visitor centre, shop and toilets are closed. Car park and trails open 6am- 6pm.
- New Year’s Eve: Visitor centre, shop and toilets open 10am-4pm. Car park and trails open 6am- 6pm.
- New Year’s Day: Visitor centre, shop and toilets open 10am-4pm. Car park and trails open 6am- 6pm.
- All other days in the festive period are open our usual winter opening hours as above.
- Free entrance to RSPB members
- Car park cost
There are no entrance charges to the reserve, but the following car parking charges apply:
- RSPB members: FREE (please get a free members ticket from our car parking machine and display your membership card face down in your windscreen)
- Non-members: £4 per car
- Blue badge holders: FREE
- Other discounts
- Joint entry for both Fairburn Ings and St Aidan’s is £5 per car for non-members.
Picnic area is closed
Binocular hire is closed
Guided walks is closed
Educational facilities are closed
Play area is closed
How to get here
The closest train station is Castleford, 3 miles away.
Buses run - infrequently - to Fairburn and Ledston villages.
From the A1(M) leave at J42, take the A63 towards Leeds, follow signs for Fairburn on the A1246. From the M1 come off at J47. Take the A656 south towards Castleford, after 4 miles turn left onto Newton Lane, the visitor centre is 2 miles along the road on the right.
Sat nav POI file: If you have a satellite navigation system that can accept POI files, please see our POI page for a download link and instructions.
Information for dog owners
Dogs are welcome on the public footpaths / bridleways around the reserve. Please keep to the designated rights of way only.
Please keep your dog on a lead and/or under close, effective control at all times, due to the sensitive wildlife, habitats and livestock here. We know that the countryside is a dog walking paradise. It’s important to remember the special surroundings here are wonderful havens for rare wildlife. Even if dogs are very well behaved, wildlife and livestock can easily become startled by a loose dog they perceive as a predator.
Disturbing wildlife does more than simply causing it to move away; it uses up their energy, decreasing their chance of survival regardless of season. Thank you for protecting the special wildlife here by keeping your dog on a lead and/ or under close, effective control.
- Dog water bowls and are available at the visitor centre.
- Sorry, dogs aren’t permitted in the visitor centre and shop other than assistance dogs.
- Dogs die in hot cars, please do not leave your dog in the car when visiting us.
Group booking information
Groups are usually welcome to visit us during normal opening hours. However, changes to laws in England mean that the maximum group size able to visit our reserve together is currently 6, unless you are from the same household or bubble.
Schools booking information
Due to Covid-19 measures, we have temporarily paused our school visits until autumn 2021. For information on our exciting programme of curriculum-linked outdoor education sessions, visit our school trips information.
With a range of habitats for your pupils to explore and plenty of activities for them to take part in, your class will have an enjoyable and memorable experience which brings them up close with our natural world. We've got a visitor centre with indoor space available for classes, a boardwalk, pond-dipping platforms and much more for you to explore!
To find out more, take a look at the list of the programmes and contact us to make a booking. Each programme is designed to last two hours. Sessions run from 10am - 12pm and 12.30 - 2.30pm. Two programmes can be combined to make a whole day visit. Find out more on our school trip pages.
To book, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01603 697 504.
Save nature with a staycation in the UK
Saving the nature that you love for future generations to enjoy. Make the most of your visit by staying in one of thousands of handpicked cottages across the UK. Simply book your stay here to support our partnership. Throughout 2021 holidaycottages.co.uk are supporting our conservation work – saving species and restoring habitats right across the UK at a time when the future of our planet has never been more important and protecting nature for future generations.