An early evening family meal with its very own children’s play area very close by

When it comes to facilities for children, Alice Park Cafe takes some beating. Situated right next to a cracking play area and acres of open space, it’s ideal for families who would like to combine some outdoor play time with a snack or meal at this popular eatery.

As a family, we’ve enjoyed any number of drinks, snacks and ice creams at Alice Park Cafe, but this was something a little different – we’d decided to make the most of the cafe’s early Friday night meal offer, which is ideal for families looking for an end of the week meal treat.

This special event runs each Friday from 5-8pm, right into October. The dining is outside so if you’re not lucky like us to find some late summer sun, you might well need a jumper against the chill. The menu covers the regular burgers and jacket potatoes style of food, as well as a three bean chilli for vegetarians and steak and chips for a bit of treat, plus Little Scoffs vegetarian options for younger diners.

There’s also a licensed bar if you fancy a treat for mum and dad, as well as an excellent choice of coffees and warm drinks.

We all went for the steak and chips, served with grilled tomatoes, salad, onion rings, coleslaw and fries (£12.95), plus one chicken burger and chips (£7.95), and colas for the children, a small bottle of Pinot Grigio for Ellen and a pint of Gem for me.

And this is where the beauty of the adjacent play area comes in. While the food was being prepared, the boys were off, making the most of the climbing frames and swings, while their teenage sister searched for wifi and Ellen and I enjoyed a drink in the sun.

I admit to being a real fan of Alice Park Cafe. It perfectly serves the needs of the many families who frequent this excellent little park on the edge of Bath, as well as putting on plenty of special events and private parties. The welcome is always warm, the teas and coffees faultless, and the chocolate muffins a secret treat!

With the boys rounded up, it was soon time for tea. OK, no, the food isn’t restaurant standard, but there was plenty of it, the chips were excellent, I got to nick the children’s mushrooms and it meant we didn’t have to cook for the evening. It was also a lovely change to our family tradition of Friday night pizza – eating al fresco in family-friendly setting, with the children having half an eye on the ice cream menu for desert.

With a break between mains and pudding for the boys to have another quick charge around the park, we were soon on to those Marshfield Ice Cream treats, before getting off home for a end of the week family film.

There’s so much to like about Alice Park, from the wonderful play area, to the tennis courts and the many special community events that take place there. And at the heart of it is the Alice Park Cafe – always welcoming, very family friendly and constantly looking for new ways to cater for the families that visit. And the chocolate muffins are very good too!