What’s the Story Behind this Stone?

Today, Katy from the Bretton Greens team was doing a bit of action research to find out more about the origins of the large, mysterious stone positioned outside Watergall School in Bretton Park.

The stone came up in conversation during our first walk, and it seemed no one knew much about why it was there and what its original purpose had been. A few rumours were circulated, including one that it had been left over from when they were building the Peterborough Cathedral…but we arrived at no conclusive answer. We then went on to speak about what its future use might be, we had discussed how it could provide a platform for a new North Bretton speakers corner or how it could become ‘Bretton’s Fourth Plinth’ (in reference to the Fourth Plinth project at Trafalgar Square, London).

Later on the day, when thinking about what was missing from N.Bretton, someone noted down “New York has the statue of Liberty, can Bretton have a historical monument or statue?” And we began to think, could this mysterious stone be a monument for N.Bretton?

But before proceeding with think about its future usage, we wanted to find out more about its origins, and thought what better way to set up on the stone, on a sunny day in Bretton and ask passersby, and we got some great answers…

There were the practical responses:

“Just a stone”

“The stone is purely decorative. No logical reason why it is here”

“to sit down”

..the more humorous ones:

“The tide brought it in from Hunstanton”

“It fell from the sky”

…and then the meaty stuff.

We were lucky enough to meet two original residents of Bretton… Both told us that it has been part of a larger children’s playground but the details of what the stone was used for differed slightly…

Whilst one resident told us:

“it [the stone] used to be a children’s slide. With steps on one side, and a slide on the other, and a hut on the top”

the other told us:

“it was always just a stone. There was a wall around the stone and a wooden frame.”

But we are getting closer to the answer, and the Bretton Greens team will be out on the stone again soon to get to this bottom of this mystery.


Meanwhile, at the Pyramid Centre Better Bretton was busy at work affixing flower beds to the front of the centre and planting it up, and what a difference it has made! Have a look at the group hard at work here:

And at the same time, Jumped Up Theatre were setting up for their sold out performance of Peter Pan at 9.45am tomorrow morning, and transforming the inside of the Pyramid Centre.

It was all go in North Bretton today!

2 thoughts on “What’s the Story Behind this Stone?

  1. Australia has Uluru otherwise known as Ayers Rock dumped in the middle of the continent. It glows red in the sunset and some of the natives worship it. Many tourists travel to the other ends of the earth just to see it. A cheaper alternative would be to visit North Bretton. Our rock, admittedly, is somewhat smaller, it doesn’t glow and it’s not a national icon. Who cares, eh? Just think of the money you’d save!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I completely agree Jonathan!

      We met an original Bretton-er last night at No Fear Gardening club and he told us more about the stone/rock. I will be uploading scans of the detailed drawing he drew of the stone/rock, and the surrounding area, as it had originally been!


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