Frequently Asked Questions and Answers!
What is the difference between a Pound and a Pinfold?
A: There appears to be no difference.
The terms seem to be interchangable with the south and west of England favouring Pound and the north and east Pinfold, although
there are contrary examples to be found throughout the country. At the time of the first OS maps the surveyor probably recorded
the term in common usage as the structures predated the surveyors visit.
Is a sheepfold a Pinfold?
A: No. Sheepfolds, although often similar in construction, are used
as a shelter by the sheep and as an aid when managing sheep on the open fell.
The studies mentioned earlier of Derbyshire pinfolds indicates that there is genuine confusion about whether
these structures are sheepfolds or pinfolds.
I suggest that there are
several indicators that will help:
Location. Pinfolds are usually within or near a township whilst sheepfolds are usually at field
corners and often in open countryside.
Construction. Pinfolds can often be constructed with dressed stone rather than the dry stone wall construction of most sheepfolds.
c, Early map descriptions. Sheepfolds are shown in numerous
locations and although not all pounds and pinfolds are named many are specifically named. Whether named as a pound or pinfold
is thought to have been based on the local informatiion given to the Ordnance Survey surveyor at the time.
Q: Why do Pounds and Pinfolds vary so much in design and size?
Please see Research Articles.
Q: When were they used and what were they used for?
A: The earliest records I have found so far date back to 1530 when they were used to impound stray animals
found trespassing on the Lord of the Manor's land. I am still researching this area and will provide a full answer as
soon as possible.