Featured Lock-up: Freshford Lock-up [video]

Situated on Church Hill, the Freshford Lock-up is one of the most unpretentious lock-ups in our database.

So much so, that a village resident whom we encountered when filming Freshford Lock-up had no idea about its past use.

Venture into the mysterious Freshford lock-up and see how it looks today. Watch the footage of Rosalind exploring this lock-up-turned-fire-engine-house, and join her to gain a deeper understanding of the place…

More information

Freshford Lock-up, below the Church (© Rosalind Crone)

It was built of rubble and stone in the late 18th century. Connected to an existing wall which surrounds the churchyard, and, because of the steepness of the hill on which it sits, the interior extends back into the churchyard. In other words, Freshford lock-up is partially underground.

It is impossible to tell if the door is original. It does have a small, cast iron grille covering a window, which suggests it might well be. At least, this grille is a good indication of its former use.

Freshford Lock-up, showing the wooden door, with strap hinges, and window covered by an iron grille (© Rosalind Crone)

Inside is one cell.

Freshford Lock-up was used for a relatively short period. By 1815, parish records describe the structure as a fire engine house. A beautiful, carved plaque is now attached to the wall next to the door. This describes the structure as a former fire engine house. No mention is made of its use as a lock-up. Today, it is used as a storage facility by the parish church.

Wooden plaque, to the left of the door of the lock-up (© Rosalind Crone)

Can you help keep Prison History active and free-to-use?

Prison History needs your feedback - banner graphic

If you enjoy our work on local history and lock-ups – perhaps it’s inspired you find out more about your own local lock-ups – then we’d love to hear about it.

Our quick survey gives us a chance to show that people are making use of our data and resources for various purposes, which is critical for future funding.

Related Prisons and Lock-Ups