Tyne and Wear HER(5898): Newcastle, Town Moor, Cow Hill Fair - Details
Newcastle, Town Moor, Cow Hill Fair
Cow Hill has a long history as a fair ground. It was, before the construction of the Central Motorway, the highest point on the Town Moor and is equidistant from each of the surrounding townships. The Cow Hill fair is first mentioned in 1490, when a grant was made for a fair to be held on St. Luke's Day by Henry VII. The fair, according to a report of the Board of Agriculture in 1880, was for the sale of livestock and was the biggest in the North of England. Cow Hill has mostly been destroyed by the motorway cutting and with it any trace of the fairground; however a series of hollow ways are visible leading up to the summit of the hill from the south. There are four in all, each measuring 60 metres long with scarps up to 0.4 metres high. These may be the remains of routeways formed by the driving of livestock up to the fair ground. Another fair, held on Lammas Day, was granted by King John in 1318; however there is no record of this having been held on Cow Hill.
<< HER 5898 >> RCHME, 1995, Town Moor, Newcastle upon Tyne, Archaeological Survey Report, p 20-21 E.M Halcrow, 1953, The Town Moor of Newcastle upon Tyne, Archaeologia Aeliana, 4, XIII, pp 153