History of Springhills Walled Garden

Springhill Community Allotments

The earliest details recorded stem from the 1700s when Springhill held the form of a Plantation House

1800s

By the 1800's property maps show that the walled garden was clearly divided into a number of distinct areas. By 1862 the far end shows a pond and an ornate garden layout in the far end, with a kitchen garden nearer the top wall.

Springhill property map 1862
Springhill Community Allotments
Springhill property map 1862

Late 1800's the pond seems to have been covered and it is believed this was all carefully laid out as a formal, ornate garden.

Springhill property map 1876
Springhill Community Allotment
Springhill property map 1876

During the war years


An advert in a local paper, published July 1942, read as follows:

Cookstown, Saturday July 15, 1942

'FRESH FRUIT for Sale, below Government prices. Gooseberries, Strawberries, Raspberries, Blackcurrants: Also all Vegetables. Customers send or bring their own baskets. Springhill, Moneymore'

When the National Trust was gifted Springhill Estate, a conifer forest was planted in the lower half of the walled garden and can still be seen there today.

1980's conifer wood
Springhill Community Allotments
1980's conifer wood

A safe place to call home

In the 1990's a local rescue organization approached the team with a young rescued deer, who was accepted into the Walled Garden. 'Bambi', as she was affectionately know by, lived out her life there and her grave stone can be seen along the base of the wall.

1990's Bambi in residence
Springhill Community Allotments
1990's Bambi in residence

2000s

Enter the new millennium, when the Ranger Team start the process of the rebirth of this wonderful space. The garden has gone full circle, started as a kitchen garden, had a pond and ornate garden, had a forest inhabited by a friendly deer, and now the Springhill House Community Garden.

Fences up, bye bye rabbits!
Springhill Community Allotments
Fences up, bye bye rabbits!

Such a transformation has occured in this space over the years and we look forward to seeing what the future will hold in this peaceful and beautiful natural haven.