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Our story

hanworth country park shepherd hut view

A farming & construction collaboration
Hanworth Country Park has been a collaboration between John Blades and Steve Plumb. The site has been in Steve’s family since 1931; in 2016, he joined forces with John to transform what was previously Rushfield Lakes into Hanworth Country Park. By trade, Steve is a farmer and John works in construction. Together, they’ve combined their skills and created a beautiful place for the public to enjoy.

Where we have come from

The beginning…
Hanworth Country Park comes from humble beginnings; Steve’s family bought the land in 1931 when it was a rig and furrow horse meadow. The Conservation Lake, as it is now called, was a water source for the horses to drink from.

farmland to parkland hanworth country park

Changing times…
By the end of the 1950s, horse power was becoming redundant due to industrialisation and the introduction of tractors. The land was therefore flattened and converted to arable farmland and stayed that way for a number of years.

hanoworth farmland to parkland

Repurposing the land…
In 1991, Steve planted a hectare of trees on an area of the land which wasn’t productive for arable farming due to the clay-based soil. In 1999, the conversion to what was known as ‘Rushfield Lakes’ started. Steve dug out the Horseshoe and Doughnut Lakes and opened up the site for fishing. In 2002, Steve purchased some neighbouring land, increasing the size of the site and enabling the Main, Mallard and Canal Lakes to be dug out in 2005.

fishing lakes at hanworth country park open for pleasure and competition anglers

The vision for a Country Park…

The site remained as a fishing destination for the next 10 years until 2016, when Steve had the vision for Hanworth Country Park was born. In 2018 planning permission was granted and work began. Steve was thrilled to be restoring the site back to how nature intended; a haven for wildlife and beautiful parkland.