The Pinfold Project is a medium term plan to provide a circular stone seat on the site of Lowick’s former Pinfold on The Common.
Back in the day, stray farm animals could expect to be rounded up and kept in the village Pinfold, until their owners paid to release them. Britain had scores of these, until the 20th Century saw the need for them decline, presumably with better fencing, greater vigilance, and fewer animals around to escape.
Lowick had one of these, and it stood on the edge of the Common, next to South Road. You can still make out the slight rise in the land where it stood. A water colour picture survives – above – with the Kyloe Hills rising in the background. You will also see it marked on old OS Maps. It is just visible on the postcard on the left.
Sadly, it fell into disrepair, and in spite of appeals to Northumberland Country Council and the Ministry for Public Buildings and Works, no money could be found to save it. The Parish Council had it demolished in 1952.
A New Pinfold
Now, a proposal from the Parish Council will rebuild a structure on the site – this time for leisure and humans. To occupy a circular area, but less than 2 metres in height, the idea is to provide a seat inside its walls and a central plinth for information about the heritage of the area, partly in acknowledgement of the pinfold, about other heritage that is gone, and about that which still remains.
The Council has established that planning permission is not required but a Lawful Development Certificate is – and this needs to be applied for! 300 years ago when the first pinfold was erected, life was shorter, but not so much time was needed to fill in forms!
Our simple computer sketch is intended to give an impression of the new pinfold, and some imagination may be required – try to add the detail from the pictures to the simple 3D rendering of a round enclosure, with a gap to get in.