|HCC Site ID:||1667||Parish:||Waterlooville Ward, Havant|
|Access:||Public Access||Ownership:||Public park and Recreation Ground|
Location and site
Waterlooville is within a residential area to the south west of the Queen’s enclosure and Park Wood, and north west of an industrial area between the A3 road and the B2150 road to Denmead.
The Waterlooville Recreation Ground is on the site of a Forest of Bere Enclosure Award to the Bishop of Winchester in 1814. It was extra parochial, its north boundary having been the parish boundary between Catherington and extra parochial land. In 1815, a large plot of land, including the recreation ground site, was first leased to, later in 1821, bought by William Friend of Hart Plain. The recreation ground site became part of the Hart Plain Estate, which included the Park Wood house. An 1870 map shows an area with the same field boundaries as the existing recreation ground as part of the ‘park’ of the estate of Park Wood. At that time, there was planting on the western edge and in the north- west corner. The Hart Plain Estate remained in the ownership of the Friend family until it was sold to the Hart Plain Company. This was offered for sale in 1910 as building plots, building sites and smallholdings.
About 1925, the Waterlooville District Recreation Committee gave as a gift to the local council 4.5ha (11.25 acres) of ground as a response to the demand for a recreation ground as a result of the population increase. This was opened in 1927. It included tennis courts, paths, bowling green, children’s playground and a wet day playhouse. It was funded by a loan of £750 and the balance of funds of £82.13.6d from the defunct Waterlooville reading room.
It is now surrounded by the Berg housing estate to the west, and the genteel detached houses of Wallis Road and Rowlands Avenue to west. The house in the corner at the end of Wallis Road was built in the 1930s for Miss Ellis, the housekeeper to the Park Wood House. The recreation ground contains the Waterlooville Bowling Club, surrounded by a pleasing beech hedge, tennis courts, cricket pitch, football area, basket-ball net and a fenced play area. There are few allotments in the northeast corner. There are several large trees, but none thought to be over 100 years old. It is obviously fulfilling its intended function as a community area.
Originally the area was part of the Forest of Bere. In the early 19th century, as a result of the enclosure awards, it was incorporated into the Hart Plain Estate, and by 1870 was part of the park of the estate. In the early 20th century most of the Estate was sold for development, and in 1925 it was bought for recreational purposes as a response to local demand. It opened in 1927. It is still a thriving sporting area with a few allotments in the northeast corner.
HGT Research: Urban Parks Survey 1997; update March 2001