Sir Robert Alexander Shafto Adair, who later became Lord Waveney, gave the newly created park to the people of Ballymena, county Antrim, N. Ireland.
In designing The People’s Park, he made use of the millpond, which was originally formed to service industrial premises near the heart of Ballymena. The original millpond, long known as the ‘Park Dam’, can be seen on the ordnance survey map of 1858 and is believed to have been opened in the late 1830’s.
Sir Shafto Adair employed 50 labourers and they worked for six months to create the park, entirely at his own expense.
Refer Ballad of Sir Shafto Adair.
The 45-acre park was opened on Tuesday 9th August 1870.