Our central parks (Watts, Andrews, Houndwell, Hoglands, Palmerston and Queen’s) were once Lammas Lands.
They were fields owned by the heriditary burgesses from Candlemas (2nd February) to Lammas Day (1st August). They were divided into strips for growing foodstuffs. After 1st August the fences were removed and the land used for animal pasture.
In the 1850’s the land was bought from the burgesses and turned into parks. In 1862 the Mayor, Frederick Perkins presented the town with the beautiful avenue of trees that stretches to this day from Andrews (East) Park through Palmerston Park toward Houndwell.
The word Lammas derives from Loaf Mass when bread was made from the first sheaves of wheat harvested and a blessing is given.