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Tyne and Wear HER(11425): Heaton Park and Armstrong Park - Details

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Heaton Park and Armstrong Park



Gardens Parks and Urban Spaces


Public Park

Early Modern



On the south side of Armstrong Bridge is Armstrong Park, which is on the wooded east bank of the Dene. Paths lead through woodland with views of the Ouse Burn to the west. The area is marked Bulman Woods on the 1859-64 OS map. Bridges carry the paths over a sunken walkway of 1880, c400m south of Armstrong Bridge, which may have been constructed to give cattle access to the river. A stone well head called King John's Well lies alongside the westernmost path c250m south of the bridge. The remains of a 18th century windmill (listed grade II), which is shown on an engraving of 1743, stand on a grassed area overlooking the wooded banks of the Dene c450m south-east of the bridge, and there are tennis courts c80m to the west of the mill which were added in the mid C20. Armstrong Park is divided from Heaton Park to the south by Jesmond Vale Road. This area was acquired by the Corporation in 1878 before which time it had been the ground of Heaton Hall. Winding paths lead around the wooded perimeter, and in the central area there is a late 19th century pavilion with a balustraded terrace overlooking bowling greens, shown on the 1898 OS map, in an area which is shown as a kitchen garden on the 1872 OS map. The land rises to the south, and paths radiate from a mound at the top of the slope close to the centre of the southern boundary which was the site of a 18th century garden temple removed in the early C20….. In the north-east corner of the park are the remains of a C12 tower house (listed grade II) called King John's Palace (also known as Adam of Jesmond's Camera). The north-west side of the park was the site of a bearpit, which was infilled in 1891. The 1859-64 OS map shows that the pattern of planting in Heaton Park has changed little with the exception of the Hall (erected c1713, demolished mid C20) and its immediate surroundings which lay south-east of the present park boundary in an area which has been built over and is outside the registered area. A lake which is shown c100m north-east of the temple was drained in the mid C20. It is possible that the grounds were laid out by Richard Woods (c1716-93) for Matthew White Ridley during the 1760s as there was contact between Woods' foreman and the Ridley family at that time {1}.




<< HER 5005 >> Archaeological Services University of Durham, 2003, Ouseburn Parks Refurbishment Project, Archaeological Desk-top Assessment English Heritage, Register of Parks and Gardens of special historic interest in England, GD2185 N. Pevsner & E. Richmond, 1957, Northumberland F. Green, 1995, A Guide to the Historic Parks and Gardens of Tyne and Wear, p 34 F. Green, 1995, Historic Parks and Gardens in Tyne and Wear - Stage 2 Research, Heaton & Armstrong Parks

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