Play Hard

A Pop-Up Park, Roller Rink and a Jurassic Jungle Trail. Here’s what to do in Sunderland over the summer holidays

Sunderland BID and Sunderland City Council are bringing a summer of fun through their Summer in the City programme – and here’s what to expect.

Written by Rachael Nichol
Published 27.07.2022

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Where: Keel Square (SR1 3DZ)

When: 25th July ­– 4th September 2022 from 11am to 3pm

Price: Free 

There’s nothing better than being sat in a park having a picnic in the sun, right? Now you won’t have to travel far as Keel Square in Sunderland city centre will be host to the Pop-Up Park complete with kid-friendly entertainment from 11 am to 3 pm on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays throughout the summer holidays.

On Mondays, kids can start off their week the right by enjoying the Fun in the SUN sessions. If the little ones in your life love nothing more than eating food and getting their hands dirty, on Wednesdays there will be the Sunderland “Taste” Experience, with cooking demos, grow-your-own sessions and other healthy-eating-inspired fun.

After a long week at work, we know at the weekend sometimes all you want to do is relax, so why not take the youngins to Wake-up, Shake-up sessions at the Pop-Up Park on Saturday? With super-fun, physical activities, sports games and other keep-fit entertainment we can guarantee that sessions will wear the little ones out so you can have a rest.




Where: Keel Square (SR1 3DZ)

When: 22nd July – 4th September 2022 from 11am to 8pm

Price: £10 for adults, £8 for five to 17-year-olds, £4 for those aged four and under and £28 for a family ticket (includes the roller skates, kneepads and helmet hire).

Whether you’re a big kid at heart or have fun-loving little ones in your life, Summer in the City has launched Sunderland’s newest roller rink – just in time for the summer holidays.

Whatever your age or ability Sunderland BID and Sunderland City Council invite you to pull on your skates. Come rain or shine, the rink that’s designed perfectly for our unpredictable weather thanks to the giant marquee that will be open for beginners and experts alike to dance, skate and party this summer.

With bangers from across the decades spun from the booming DJ booth, there are hours of fun to be had. Whether you fancy dancing at the Funkalicious 70’s sessions or the little ones want to skate with their favourite Marvel heroes and villains and princesses, there’s a range of public sessions to attend along with allocated slots for Special Educational Needs sessions and group and private bookings – perfect for birthdays!

Want to know more? Read our full feature about Sunderland’s newest roller rink here.




When: 25th July – 4th September 2022

The Art Benches are back. If you haven’t already seen them around Sunderland in previous years, then this summer is your time to see them. When the sun is shining these colourful benches really brighten up the city. This year, Sunderland is celebrating 30 years of being a city, so the benches will be painted to represent this.

But who paints the benches, we hear you ask? Well, all the benches are actually painted by locals which means you can be part of bringing them to life. Sign up to be involved with The Art Room Sunderland by following this link.




When: 25th July – 4th September 2022 from 9am to 5pm

For the little explorers this interactive, augmented reality (AR) trail returns but with a prehistoric Jurassic Jungle theme this summer. Go on an adventure as you search for the dino eggs, uncover ancient fossils and identify fascinating creatures and insects around the city – can you take on the mammoth task?

Use the Sunderland Experience App to see the magical animations which is available for free on Android and iOS, and you can access the AR trail, the exclusive city centre offers, discounts and details of all upcoming events.



For more information about Sunderland BID’s work and to keep up to date with their events this summer visit their website.

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