Castle Grounds - 'Over the Years'

Before the Windmill Centre and the playing fields on the Hempton Road there was a long history of sports and social activities at the Castle Grounds. The site was used for many years and has boasted a number of pavilions, Nissen huts, bowling greens, archery butts, rifle range and playgrounds. It has also hosted football pitches and was a minor counties cricket ground until the Deddington cricket and football clubs moved to their current venues.

Below is the first pavilion which was was constructed in 1860 and was known as the Archery Pavilion. It stood into the 1930's before being demolished.

First pavillion 

Positioned in the south west corner on the inside of the banking, the pavilion would have been an imposing structure and clearly dwarfed the banks which are just visible.



The much later football pavilion is pictured below. Planned in 1967 and still standing well into the 1980's the steps leading up to the pavilion are still visible today.

 Pavilion 1980's

The historian Leland

states "... where there hath been a castle - still remain the castle grounds. Here from about the middle of the nineteenth century till the first decade of the twentieth situated on the right hand side of the present bowling green stood the remarkable structure called the pavilion. It was so large that it contained a spacious ballroom with musicians' gallery, cloakrooms and a refreshment room. The whole was covered by an immense roof of thatch.

The rest of Lelands extensive and interesting article can be read HERE (pdf)

In the end the vogue for pavilion gaities waned and finally, principally on account of the cost of keeping in repair the immense thatched roof the pavilion was demolished. Little remained other than a part of its concrete foundation.

For many years the annual flower show, a bowling green and winter matches of Deddington football club were the remaining uses of the Castle Grounds site.


Deddington Town Football Club



Deddington vs Stoke Lyne

                                        Date unknown

 1974 fete

Football Club

More Football Club images can be seen in the Gallery

Bowls Club

                                               Date unknown

More Bowls Club images can be seen in the Gallery

Flower Shows

An even earlier report dated 1854 from 'Gazing at the new gazometer' page 349 includes a diary entry mentioning the annual flower show at the castle grounds and this event continued well into the 20th century.

1912 flower show 

More Flower Show images from 1909 to 1932 can be found in the Gallery

Fetes & Fairs

The Castle grounds have also hosted the village Fetes and Fairs for many years.

1981 Carnival This major village wide event on the Castle Grounds included a gymkhana and a five-a-side football tournament.

Click HERE if you wish to see the video or click on the poster if you wish to see the time line of events and a link to the video





Four Farms Challenge - Charity Event

This annual fund raising event os a  5km or 10km run in support of the School PTA. It starts and finishes at the grounds. Find out more about it HERE