Houses in the Castle Rock

Houses in the Castle Rock

NOTTINGHAM PARK is a most curious place. It is private property, and no unauthorised person has any legal right to walk about its roads.

It began life as the park of Nottingham Castle. Probably a small portion of the great Sherwood Forest was fenced in and kept stocked with game so that the sovereigns who happened to be in residence at the great fortress-palace of Nottingham Castle should always have quarries at hand should they desire to recreate themselves with hunting.

It sank from its high estate, and in 1508 is referred to as "the cuny garth,’’ or rabbit warren.

At the foot of the Castle Rock occurred the great fishponds of the Castle. Their site has now been built over and Hope-drive and Fishpond-drive erected upon it. When the fishpond was established it is impossible to say—probably in the early Middle Ages, for we know the importance of fish as a change of diet during the long Winter months.

Soon after 1700 this fishpond was leased to the old Water Company of Nottingham, who used it as a reservoir but did not take sufficient care to keep it clear, so that it gradually silted up. Eventually, in 1791, it was used as a dump into which to throw the soil dug out for the foundation of the barracks in Barrack-lane, and so ceased to exist as a pond.

However, the site was found to be extremely fertile, and the fame of the fishpond gardens was of more than local celebrity.

This curious rock-hewn house was used as a store in which to keep fishing tackle.