The British Ironwork Centre, near Oswestry in Shropshire, has something for all ages. With a large open air museum of steel sculpture including a metal safari park, a quirky indoor showroom full of all sorts of ironmongery, and home of the famous Knife Angel, the centre holds plenty to entertain and inform visitors.

An iron sculpture of an eagle

The Centre uses the shaping, welding and riveting of iron to make impactful art sculptures to give a unique experience, set in attractive parkland.

Many of the pieces are using recycled iron and it is astonishing just how many strange objects have been incorporated into the designs – motor parts, agricultural items, wheels, mangles, fireplaces, boxes, carts – designs which range from the poignant and meaningful to the faintly ridiculous.

The entrance is along a drive where many of the iron animals are exhibited – it’s like driving into an iron safari park. Giraffe, rhino, hippo, elephant all greet your arrival.

Things get increasingly fanciful as you walk through the displays – a dragon on top of a Jaguar saloon, flying fish, Bumblebee from Transformers, Spiderman, a gorilla climbing a ladder, a dinosaur, a crocodile, a tortoise and a turtle – you are not at all sure what you will find around the next corner. </