Nottingham Street Tales: Cook Stool Row [The Poultry]

by Paul Nix


The range of buildings that faced the south side of the old Exchange was originally called “Cook Stool Row”. This was where the Ducking Stool was kept; for Cook Stool read Duck Stool, it was used to duck female scolds in the pond that was in front of the old Exchange building (replaced by the modern Council House).

The story goes that the Ducking stool had been out of use for some time (due to pressure from locals who thought it demeaning), but a dignitary decided that a notorious scold needed teaching a lesson.

During the ducking the stool broke (due to non use, its maintainance had been lacking) and the scold was drowned.

This led to the authorities ordering the destruction and burning of the stool and the filling in of the pond.

This side of the thoroughfare, after the demise of the stool was renamed The Poultry (possibly to hid the shame of the event).


About nottinghamhiddenhistoryteam

Originally formed in 1965 to try to save or at least record before destruction the cave sites continually discovered during the major redevelopment of the City that took place in Nottingham in the 1960′s. Almost every day new sites were unearthed and destroyed before anyone was notified; last thing they wanted was someone telling them to stop what they were doing; TIME is MONEY. The word HIDDEN in the Team’s title is because a lot of what was being invisibly lost in the redevelopment was our early history in the caves, they are under most, if now all, of Nottingham. In the 80’s and 90’s the Team conducted with the help of Dr Robert Morrell and Syd Henley, research and work on Nottingham’s history, folklore and local archaeology. The Team published quarterly magazines on their findings. The Team lapsed for a few years after the death of Paul Nix who was the team leader for thirty plus years. The Team has reformed and is now back working on Nottingham local history. On this blog you will find a series of history, folklore and archaeological related articles and information. Most of the material published will be specifically related to Nottingham/shire local history.
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