The village pond for many, many years was an open pool where cows and sheep would roam and take refreshment.
In 1900 the pond was so polluted the Parish Council disconnected the overflow from the cesspit at St Gabriel’s Terrace, which was running into the Hanley Swan village Pool.
In 1911 the village pond was cleaned and ongoing maintenance continued until in 1954 when it was stocked with carp. The pond froze over many times but during the severe winter of 1962/3 and when the village pond froze over completely, all the carp died.
The village pond was again cleared in 1964 and 1972 as part of a community project to dredge and landscape the area. In 1976 there was a severe drought which caused the village pond to completely dry up for several months but this allowing the village pond to be cleared by hand without damaging the clay lining.
The last major restoration took place in 1990, when local builder Brain Roberson introduced a water feed pipe running from nearby Coverdale Farm. He also added the willow tree with a duck landing stage in the middle of the pond as well as the memorial benches located around the pond.
But after 18 years, the duck platform had almost disintegrated, so the local Cafe Market, run by Joanna Bowles, funded three floating duck houses in the middle of the village pond, which are a real focal point today.
The village pond has suffered from over duck population but in the summer of 2006 over 100 ducks, half a dozen geese, and assorted moorhens were resident on the pond, which started the serious problems of pollution and erosion of the pond and it’s banks.
To make matter worse, many visitors from surrounding caravan parks just cannot resist the need to feed the ducks with bread but much of this just falls to the bottom of the pond and rots, making the water slimy and unable to sustain plants, such as water lilies that used to cover the surface. The Community project headed up by Neil Verlander in 2009 finally brought the pond back to a healthy and sustainable level.
The large oak tree on the village green was planted in 1863 to commemorate the marriage of the Prince of Wales, the future Edward VII, to princess Alexandra of Denmark. According to village legend, it made little progress until one day a circus was held on the green and an elephant tore off the top of the tree to eat, and after that it flourished.
Over the years it has grown into a majestic oak tree
In 1981 Lechmere estate forester Harry Sivell planted a second Oak tree on the Hanley Swan village green to commemorate the marriage of Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer.
Shared photographs of Hanley Swan pond through the years.