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Outdoor sports in parks

Bedford parks and green spaces offer a range of sporting activities for all to use and enjoy. Some facilities are free to access while others require a reservation and payment of a booking fee.

Cricket, football, rounders, rugby

Use Playfinder to find somewhere to play cricket, football, rounders and rugby:

  • simple to book and pay for casual bookings
  • search by date and time or location
  • view availability for block bookings or casual use
  • detailed description of each pitch - facilities, transport, images and map
Book a sports pitch

Cricket - the season runs from May to the end of August. We have four cricket squares available for hire in public parks
Football - season runs from the first Saturday in September to the last Sunday in April. There are football pitches in Bedford and Kempston larger green open spaces as well as urban parks.
Rounders - pitches are available from May to September in Russell Park and Bedford Park. 
Rugby - playing season runs from September to April. We currently have one junior rugby pitch in Mowsbury Park. 


Bowls can be played by all ages and abilities making it the perfect sport for all the family to enjoy together. The sport also encourages, team work, new friendships and is a great way to keep active. The outdoor bowls season runs from the beginning of May to the end of September.

During the playing season the clubs often run special sessions for complete beginners or those who are interested in taking up the sport. Look out for information on these sessions on the notice boards outside each of the greens.

The clubs will provide all the equipment you need - all you need to do is go along and join in the fun. No special clothing is required, just flat soled shoes.

There are five bowling greens in Bedford and Kempston located at:

  • Bedford Park
  • Mowsbury Park (call 01234 771416 to book)
  • Priory Gardens (Greyfriars)
  • Russell Park
  • Southfields (Kempston)

Locations of Bedford Borough sports facilities (PDF)


The putting green at Russell Park opens at Easter for the spring/summer season subject to weather and ground conditions. To check opening times or enquire about booking during the playing season, visit its facebook page or call the Kiosk on 01234 271877.

Table tennis

There are currently three table tennis tables in Addison Howard Park, Russell Park and Jubilee Park. Please note that in Russell Park only there is a hire fee at weekends from Whitsun to the end of September and every day during the Easter and Summer Holidays. The tables in Addison Howard Park and Jubilee Park are both free to use (bring your own bat and ball).


There are free hard surface tennis courts available in Bedford Park, Allen Park, Mowsbury Park, Addison Howard Park, (Kempston) and Southfields Recreation Ground (Kempston).

See location of park tennis courts in Bedford and Kempston 

The tennis courts in Russell Park are subject to seasonal hire fees payable and bookable at the Kiosk. To enquire or book visit its Facebook page or call the Kiosk on 01234 271877.

You can also book online at 

Visit Lawn Tennis Association to find tennis coaching sessions in the Borough and other information. 

Report a sports pitch maintenance problem

If you spot a problem with our sports pitches, such as grass not being cut or posts missing, then please let us know.

Report a sports pitch maintenance problem


Fishing at Priory Country Park and Harrold-Odell Country Park is restricted. In some waters fishing is not permitted at all. Where fishing is permitted you will need a current Environment Agency rod licence.

In other areas you must also purchase a fishing permit from Bedford Borough Council.

Fishing permits are valid for one season only. The fishing season runs from 16 June to 14 March each year.

To apply for a licence, visit the Priory Country Park or Harrold Odell Country Park webpages.

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