When the Royal Military Canal and Road were built in the early 1800’s, the War Department purchased the land on which to do so. This consisted of the route of the canal itself, but also a lot of land in Pett Level. In 1897 the Admiralty, needing to build a new Coastguard Station, negotiated a transfer of land from the War Department, known as Toot Rock. Over the years the Admiralty acquired another small adjacent area to use as gardens. In 1908 the War Department, no longer needing the remainder of the land, sold it to a company called Church Crookham Hamlet Ltd, after transferring a further small portion on Toot Rock to the Admiralty.
In 1926 the Toot Rock site was sold off at auction to the general public. In 1928 (Wednesday 9th May) Church Crookham Hamlet Ltd became bankrupt, and the land was sold at auction in various lots.