- Public Park
The park retains its essential Victorian character with sturdy cast iron railings, fine lampposts, seats and a handsome shelter. There are magnificent views from the park; on a clear day one can see the Eddystone Lighthouse on the horizon and the Plymouth Breakwater. Recently new landscape works and tree planting have enhanced the park. The parks origins date back to the celebrations and festival of the local people for the ‘ Incorporation of the Borough of Plymouth’ by Act of Parliament in 1439. As part of the celebrations mock battles were re-enacted by local youths commemorating the fight which took place against the invading Bretons, hence Freedom Fields. The formal park is on the site of the decisive battle of the Civil War which was fought on the 3rd December 1643 when the Royalists were defeated by the Parliamentarians; this led to the end of the Siege of Plymouth. The park was extended in 1885 and the sturdy granite monument commemorating the victory of the Parliamentary forces over the besieging Royalists was erected in 1891. The Friends of the Park have erected a memorial to Michael Foot MP who was born in a house near the park in 1913.
Cherry & Pevsner: The Buildings of England – Devon, 1989: 670
S Pugsley: Devon Gardens – An Historical Survey, 1994: 152