Robin Hood's Well (Laughton)
|Adm. div.||West Riding of Yorkshire|
|Vicinity||In Laughton Forest; c. 2 km NNW of Laughton and c. 2.5 km ESE of East Ferry|
|Interest||Robin Hood name|
By Henrik Thiil Nielsen, 2016-12-27. Revised by Henrik Thiil Nielsen, 2017-09-01.
Robin Hood's Well is the southeasternmost of two springs located on the south slope of Hardwick Hill in Laughton Wood, 580 m east of East Ferry Road, c. 10 m north of a lane leading east from the road, the site now hidden in the trees on the hill side.
Laughton Forest was planted in the late 1920s when timber reserves were low following the First World War. Before then the area had been "mainly open heathland with ponds, small woodlands and shifting sand dunes".
The earliest record of the well I have found so far is the 6" O.S. map of the area published in 1886. The well is also indicated on the later 6" O.S. maps listed below ((see Maps section), including that published c. 1950 where the area is shown as forested. The place-name thus survived this major change in the landscape.
Archaeological finds provide clear evidence that Hardwick – the place-name survives only in the name of the hill – was a thriving settlement in former times. An anonymous paper on the history of Laughton available from the website of Lincolnshire County Council suggests the well supplied a community with water during the Roman era:
Silver Street is that part of the south-western slope of the hill [i.e. Hardwick Hill] linking Ferry Flash and descending to Ferry Road and the most probable site of the Roman haven in [sic] below Robin Hood’s Well. There is still a rill running from this medicinal well-pool and in former times this spring probably fed the haven creed [sic].
No other mention of this place-name was found online when the present page was created.
- Nothing relevant in Cameron, Kenneth; Field, John; Insley, John. The place-names of Lincolnshire (English Place-Name Society, vols. 58, 64/65-66, 71, 73, 77, 85) (Nottingham, 1985-2010)
- Not included in Dobson, R.B., ed.; Taylor, J., ed. Rymes of Robyn Hood: an Introduction to the English Outlaw (London, 1976), pp. 293-311.
- 6" O.S. map Lincolnshire XXXV.NW (1886; surveyed 1885)
- 6" O.S. map Lincolnshire XXXV.NW (1907; rev. 1905)
- 6" O.S. map Lincolnshire XXXV.NW (1907; rev. 1905) (georeferenced)
- 6" O.S. map Lincolnshire XXXV.NW (c. 1950; rev. 1948).
- Lincolnshire County Council: Anonymous paper on the history of Laughton.
- Woodland Trust: Laughton Forest – Tuetoes Wood.