There are 450 acres of parkland, woodland and lakes to explore. The lakes themselves are thought to have been created by monks living at nearby Torre Abbey, to supply them with fresh fish and were restored by local landowner, Richard Mallock before he died in 1900. On the edge of the woods is the famous Gamekeeper's Cottage dating back to the 16th century. The Gamekeeper was entrusted with raising pheasants, hares, duck and rabbits and also keeping the area free of poachers. Today, however, the cottage is the meeting place for many guided woodland walks - an activity enjoyed by all. In her youth, Agatha Christie regularly visited Cockington. Her novel Why Didn't They Ask Evans? is dedicated to Christopher Mallock. The Mallock family were friends of Christie's from the years before her first marriage. The Mallocks staged amateur theatricals at Cockington Court, where Christie, managing to overcome her usual shyness, also took part. The village was probably founded 2,500 years ago during the Iron Age with evidence of two hill forts on either side of Cockington valley. Little is known about Cockington from that point up until the remains of a small Saxon village were found near The Drum Inn. The first official documentation of the village was in the 10th century. The manor was owned by Alric the Saxon, before being owned by William Hostiarus, William de Falesia and Robert FitzMartin, who passed it down to his son Roger, who renounced his name to become Roger de Cockington. The Cockington family owned Cockington Estate from 1048 to 1348. The Cary family owned the court from 1375 to 1654. It was then sold on to the Mallock family, a family of rich silversmiths from Exeter, who owned it from 1654 to 1932 until they later sold the estate to the Torquay Corporation.
The Court was the mansion house of the Mallock family, and remains the focal point of the estate. Originally built in the 16th century, it has very few architectural features remaining from the period, as it has been altered and extended several times, particularly in 1673 by Rawlyn Mallock and around 1820 by the Reverend Roger Mallock. In the centre of Cockington, and nestled amongst the pretty thatched cottages, stands The Forge. This is one of the most photographed buildings in the whole of the country, and dates from the 14th century. The oldest postcard featuring the village was of the Forge which was taken during the 1890's. This was quite unusual for that historical period as it was photographed during the winter season. Unfortunately, no longer a working forge, it is now home to the acclaimed miniature horseshoe.