Stowe Fields is set against the backdrop of Lichfield Cathedral and borders Stowe Pool.
The area offers fantastic views across to St Chad’s Church and a walking, a jogging loop of approximately one mile around the pool, as well as an outdoor gym and a play area.
Stowe Pool provides a relaxing setting for coarse fishing (roach, perch, carp, pike and tench). Fishing permits are available from a ranger on site or by visiting the Ranger Station in Beacon Park (next to the crazy golf course).
Stowe Pool is within easy walking distance from the city centre. It has various points of entry, the main one being from Dam Street. There are also entry points from St Chad’s Road, Stowe Road and direct from Cross Keys/Lombard Street car park.
Dogs are welcome but must be kept under control.
A brief history
A conduit carries Leomansley and Trunkfield brooks under Museum Gardens and Bird Street into Minster Pool. The water is fed into a pipe under Dam Street and Stowe Fields, and then into Stowe Pool.
Originally a medieval mill pond, with Stowe Mill located to the west of the Church of St Chad, Stowe Pool was taken over by the South Staffordshire Waterworks Company in 1856, and was made into a reservoir. This man-made structure is around six metres higher than the original ground level.
During construction, the water company planted ornamental trees and created a new path along the top of the embankment. The boathouse was built around 1890.
In the 18th century, the pool was visited (among others) by Samuel Johnson and Anna Seward. On the north side of the pool, Johnson’s father had a parchment factory (today commemorated by the street name The Parchments). Nearby stood Johnson’s Willow, an enormous tree which became famous for its great size. It was much admired by Johnson, who always visited it whenever he returned to Lichfield in later life. The current Johnson’s Willow on the site is a descendant of the original.
At the eastern end of the pool is St Chad’s Church, named after the 7th century churchman who helped to spread Christianity in the area. According to tradition, he baptised people in ‘St Chad’s Well’, a replica of which is located in the grounds of the church.
Since 1968 the reservoir has not been used to supply water, and it is now solely used for recreation. It is owned and managed by Lichfield District Council.
Getting here and parking
On Main Roadway
On the edge of Lichfield City Centre next to St Chads Church.
- Customer parking with charge
- Public toilets available
Access, lifts and ramps
- There is level access to the main public areas