Richard Earl of Cornwall
Brother of Henry III, granted the Manor of Isleworth
1209 - 1272
Medieval land enclosuresPeace and prosperity followed the Norman conquest. The population increased and more land was enclosed for farming and cultivation.
Locally, the largest enclosure of land was made by Richard Earl of Cornwall in 1227. Richard was the 18 year old brother of Henry III and Henry had given him the manor of Isleworth.
Richard built a manor house in Isleworth (in what is now Lower Square). It had a stone hall with basement and kitchen, a chapel with chambers for the King and Queen and was surrounded by a moat.
Richard enclosed a large area of land with a double ditch and hedge. Later known as Twickenham Park, the enclosure stretched from the mouth of the River Crane in Isleworth to a point near Richmond Bridge (there were no bridges then).
Inside the fence were cattle, granaries and barns. Trees were grown for fuel and buildings.
At the southern end of the Park, Richard built a rabbit warren. Rabbits had been brought to England by the Normans. They were good to eat and their skins were used for winter clothes and for bedding...