Friends of Woodthorpe Grange Park 2018
1922 -2022 Woodthorpe Grange Park Centenary
What we know as todays Woodthorpe Grange Park began as a 40-acre farm of grass and arable land, bordered by Mansfield Road and Scout Lane (now Woodthorpe Drive) and was owned by Alfred Pogson, who in May 1871 put the land for sale at an auction, where the auctioneer, William Whitehead, produced a sketch map of the area on which it was strongly suggested a 50ft wide road should be built from Mansfield Road right through the heart of what is now Woodthorpe Park. This road was to serve the many villas which could have been built on the site. Fortunately, the houses were never built.
John L. Thackeray of Arno Vale House who purchased the land in 1871, a short time later sold it onto Henry Ashwell a master bleacher, who owned factories on Radford Road in the New Basford area of Nottingham.
Ashwell bought the land in order to create his own estate complete with a private house, Woodthorpe Grange, which was built in 1874, and lived in it with his wife Sarah and two daughters, Mary and Frances, along with two nieces and four servants. The estate was extended in 1881 when Ashwell bought the small brickworks on Scout Lane (Woodthorpe Drive) from John Harrison for £655, and converted it into the rockery/dell gardens, which are now part of the park. Unfortunately for the Ashwell Family the halcyon days did not last long because in 1889 the Nottingham Suburban Railway was opened, and the line ran right across and under their estate.
For more information about the history of Woodthorpe Park click on the following link: Woodthorpe Park Centenary
Henry Ashwell: Woodthorpe Grange’s first owner