Packington Park

Description of this historic site

The site of a deer park where deer were kept for hunting. It dated to the Post Medieval period and was situated north east of Packington Hall.

Notes about this historic site

1 Imparked by Sir Clement Fisher in the reign of James I ‘out of the outwood and some other grounds here’ (Dugdale). It is at present a park of 500 acres, with a herd of 300 fallow deer.

2 Listed as a deer park in a work by Whitaker. It formed part of the Forest of Arden and contained some very old oaks. About 270 hectares. Imparked at time of James 1 (1603-25). There are still deer in the park, but there is no surviving indication of a park pale.

3 Landscape parks and lakes, c220 ha, round Packington Hall and Packington Old Hall. The late C17 Halls both had gardens of largely geometrical design, including canals and avenues, but these have gone. In c1750 Capability Brown was called in to make a survey for improvements. In 1751 he returned, making designs for various buildings and a grotto. The latter survives in part at the E end of the Hall Pool, i.e. 300m to the SE of Packington Hall. Brown created 2 main lakes, the Great Pool and the Hall Pool, which are fed from the E, and run for 2km E-W and slightly to the S of Packington Hall. Principal woodland for 700m to the S of Hall Pool (Wilderness and Little Dayhouse Wood), at the E end of Great Pool (the Decoy and Church Wood), and – the Garden Spinney – to the NW of the Hall and stables. Kitchen gardens of 5ha N of the stables.

4 Historical article on the development of Packington. The estate belonged to Kenilworth Priory in Medieval period. It was acquired at the Dissolution by the former tenant (John Fisher),who is said (by Dugdale) to have built the first house, probably on or near the site of the present Packington Hall. The estate was emparked by his son at the beginning of the C17, and the monastic estate settlement may have been removed as early as this. The lake now known as the Great Pool was established in the first half of the C17 but lay outside the then extent of the park. In this period there were probably fishponds on the site of the later Hall Pool, for there are references to Parliamentarian troops plundering fish during the Civil War. The park was extended in the second half of the C17, and the house now known as the Old Hall repaired, refaced and extended, possibly to act as a temporary home for the family. A new house, which forms the core of the present Packington Hall, was completed c1693. There is little evidence for the appearance of its late C17 and early C18 gardens, but they are likely to have been formal and to have made extensive use of water. The southern part of the park was transformed in the mid C18 after the designs of Capability Brown, who conceived the Hall Pool. At the same time the Hall was rebuilt around the late C17 core. Later in the C18 the Great Pool was reshaped, the Holyhead road diverted away from the house, and the old church rebuilt. A pleasure garden was laid out north of the Hall Pool at the end of the C18 and hothouses, greenhouses and terraces had all been constructed by 1820. At this date the park was extended again, obliterating Dyalls Green: this was the last major alteration to the Packington landscape.

56 7Lovie reported parkland with pools/lakes, drives, plantations, terraces, pleasure grounds and kitchen garden.
Park by 1625, created from old Forest of Arden. Designed by Lancelot “Capability” Brown, 1751, and pleasure grounds developed late C18th by 4th Earl of Aylesford.
8 Portable Antiquities Scheme find provenance information:
Methods of discovery: Metal detector