The history of Park Sutton (or Sutton Park) dates back to 1528 and still sticks by its label from that time as "a park for all people." Sticking with that phrase for over 400 years hasn't been easy to achieve especially when it is only a park. But the Park Sutton has done its best to keep up with the modern times and will always do its best to try and stick with that label for as long as the park exists.
Most of the Park Sutton was created for the purpose of hunting deer's. Although Park Sutton did obtain the name Sutton Chase for a while before being changed to Sutton Park, the price for hunting in Park Sutton during that time was £10, which was considered a lot of money back in the older days.
In the 1520's, Sutton Park was known as Sutton Coldfield, the Coldfield Park and the hunting grounds that were in Sutton Coldfield became the possession of Henry VIII. Then in 1528 John Harman who was a Sutton native came up with the idea that the Coldfield Park should become a place where the inhabitants should be able to benefit from the land and not be hunted. The King agreed to this and the inhabitants were able to run freely in Sutton Coldfield, but also allowed for some hunting to take place. So hunting wasn't fully outlawed in the 1500's but it was downscaled.
The recreational use of Sutton Park began in the 19th Century. There were two horse-racing courses that were built in the park. The first course in Sutton Park was built between Holly Knoll and the Railway that is there today. The second horse-racing course that was built was much larger and situated near Westwood Coppice. Golf was also a sport that was added to the park. Although it was only a 9-hole golf course it was the most popular golf course in Sutton Park for 9 years. After that an 18-hole golf course was added to Sutton Park in 1889 and was used a lot more then the 9-hole golf course.
When the railway was built in Sutton in 1862, the train would have special trains that were designed for day-trippers who wanted to visit the park. The activities that were available to the day-trippers were vast in numbers, they included boating on the pools that were available and even donkey rides were available.
Sutton Park today still retains a lot of its older day history. The history is a very important aspect to the park and guides will show people where the people used to hunt and or fish and of course play golf. It is always great to see these historic moments in such a small park. When you are treading in the park it can almost feel like you are walking along with King Henry VIII and talking to him about the great days hunting. Or you can hear the cheers coming from the golfing area where the many visitors would playing a round of golf before heading off home or even stopping for some refreshments. The park wants to stick by its motto 'a park for all the people' and will still stick with that motto until its last day.
Sutton Park is still used for recreational purposes and the activities are almost the same as in the older days although some new activities have been added, they still create a great day out for anyone - whether they are young or old, everyone will enjoy Sutton Park.