Park Hall Farm : Mapperley
Park Hall Farm Driveway, 1964
Park Hall Farm was built on the site of our oldest settlement.
A moated Manor House owned by Simon Adherne. Simon received a Royal Charter by Henry III in 1267. Allowing him as Lord of the Manor to hold an annual fair to be held at the festival of the Holy Trinity, always falling in May or June. (Trinity Sunday falls in May or June. Eight weeks after Easter Day. The earliest possible date being May 17th. The latest possible date June 20th). Making this a right to hold a fair, which is even older than Ilkeston. Also he could hold a weekly market every Monday.
An attack on his manorial rights took place three years later in 1269. Ralph Cromwell (Lord of the Manor of West Hallam) carried this out. He organised a group of men to ransack the Hall and throw down, and carry away Simon's Gallows, stocks and Pillory which Simon had erected under his interpretation of the Royal Charter.
Although the road leading from West Hallam crossroads to the Park Hall Hamlet is today officially sign-posted Park Hall Lane, to all the locals it is referred to as Simon Lane. The fields to the west of the farm leading to Smalley, are also still identified on all ordnance survey maps as "Simonfields". Today the farm is owned by the Morgan family.
Archaeological excavations were carried out late 1960’s and a report issued by the Ilkeston & District Local History Society.
In 1969-70 I was a member of an archaeological dig under the direction of Mr Alan Palfreyman and organised by Ilkeston and District Local History Society. The objective - to find the site of Simon's Manor.
As Park Hall Lane is still known as Simon Lane and Mapperley Colliery known as Simon Pit, and adjacent fields known as Simon Fields it seemed logical to look nearby. After one false start we discovered traces of a moat at Park Hall Farm and with the kind permission of the owner, Mr Morgan, commenced to dig up his farm-yard. We were able to establish that Park Hall Farm was indeed the site of a moated fortified Manor house almost certainly that of Simon de Arden. Furthermore the site had been continuously occupied since the 13th century. The original well, 700 years old, supplied water for farm purposes. As well as the moat a wooden defensive palisade was found, probably to keep out wild animals as well as the West Hallam ruffians. Artefacts relating to four distinct phases of occupation were found and identified with the help of the Ministry of Public Works and Buildings.
The monument includes the moated site and well at Park Hall and the adjacent enclosure which extends to the south-east. The moated site is currently occupied by the stackyard of Park Hall Farm and its visible remains comprise a platform measuring c.30m square and the water-filled east arm of the moat which is now c.8m wide.
Park Hall Farm and the Morgan Family
Marriage of Arthur & Beryl Morgan in 1949 in Holy Trinity, Mapperley
Arthur came from Sussex as a Bevan Boy and worked at Coppice Pit and he lodged at Coppice Farm with Beryls parents. Here Beryl and Arthurs relationship blossomed and after their marriage they moved to Bedford. David was born there in 1951. They later returned to live in a bungalow on the High Lane, West Hallam. Brenda was born in 1955 but between David and Brenda, Beryl very sadly lost a baby. They later moved to a house on Mapperley Lane and later managed to save a deposit to buy Park Hall Farm in 1964. The Harvey family ran the farm before them and the farm and land were owned by The Lowe Family, Lock Park
Beryl recalls that Mr Harvey would sleep in the cow shed as it was warmer than the house!
Arthur, Beryl and Daughter Brenda (right)
Beryl with her brother Bill, formally of Coppice Farm. Mapperley Lane, and their father William. Bill was well known locally for his and Beryls milk round
David Morgan (son) and his sister Brenda, 1960's
Arthur Morgan Working in the Farm Yard
They had many pigs which Beryl loved breeding - despite once being bitten on her bottom! Evidence of her love of pigs can still be seen today as she has many ornaments which are of various pigs within her farm house. It has clearly been a working farm and a loving home. The farm house has many rooms with ceiling beams which came from sailing ships. It is also full of wonderful photographs of family, the farm, old maps etc. It is marvellous to think the history of this house and the stories it could hold over the last 300 years.
They had many milking cows and Beryl with her brother Bill had a milk round for many years before selling to Andrew Wint.