Essex Churches - Ugley to Writtle

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Interesting churches and a mighty Abbey
  
  
Ugley - St Peter  A large Tudor brick tower is attached to the west end of the nave which is dated 13th century. The rest of the church is flint from a rebuild in 1866. Some masonry was sourced from the ruins of nearby Bolington church. : Church, Essex, Ugley, Tudor, C13
1 Ugley - St Peter
Ulting - All Saints  The church in Ulting was originally built in 1150, and restored in the 1870s. It's such a quiet and tranquil spot these days, but in the fifteenth century this tiny church was a significant pilgrimage site. The Guild of the Blessed Virgin Mary flourished in the Chapel of Our Lady of Ulting, a separate building once joined onto the west side of the steeple of Ulting Church. The Chapel was built in the mid fifteenth century and the Guild formed in 1477. At the centre of the cult was a statue of the Virgin Mary, perhaps a miracle-working statue, attracting pilgrims whose itinerary also included the shrine of the Virgin Mary at Walsingham and of St Thomas a Becket at Canterbury. In 1548 the Guild was dissolved and its building demolished, and the church reverted to its former tranquillity. : Church, Essex, Ulting, All Saints
2 Ulting - All Saints
Ulting - All Saints - Spire  Weatherboarded and shingled spire : Church, Essex, Ulting, All Saints
3 Ulting - All Saints - Spire
Upminster - St Laurence  The bottom parts of the tower are original c.1200 masonry. The pyramidal lead roof supports a timber lantern and spire. Apart from the 14th century north arcade, the rest of the church has been rebuilt in the 19th and 20th centuries. The church is in a central location in what was a Saxon village, but is obscured by too many large closely planted evergreens. : Church, Essex, Upminster
4 Upminster - St Laurence
Upshire - St Thomas  St Thomas' was founded in 1901 as the family church of the Buxton family.  It occupies a beautiful setting, looking out across the rolling hills of West Essex from the margins of Epping Forest. : Church, Essex, Upshire, St Thomas
5 Upshire - St Thomas
Vange - All Saints  An early Norman church with small simple belfry containing a single bell made in 1761. The west wall and roof  were restored in 1837, and further structural repairs and restoration work was undertaken in 2004 by the Churches Conservation Trust. : Church, Essex, Vange, All Saints, Norman, Belfry
6 Vange - All Saints
Vange - All Saints - Font  View of the 12th century font taken from under the gallery at the west end of the church. Its square bowel of Purbeck marble, which has a crudely incised zigzag pattern on its eastern face, rests on a circular central pillar and four more recently renewed smaller columns. The four corners of the bowl have worn trefoil decorations and in the north east and south west corners are traces of the locking device to prevent baptismal water being stolen. : Church, Essex, Vange, All Saints, Norman, Font
7 Vange - All Saints - Font
Vange, Basildon - All Saints Rood Stairs  The 3ft 9in thick chancel arch was constructed 900 years ago. Above it was a rood-loft that jutted out into the nave above the screen which divided the nave from the chancel. Access to the loft was via the rood-loft staircase, constructed in the 1400s, which remains in the thickness of the south wall. In the space above the loft was the great Rood, showing Christ crucified and flanked by his mother and St John. As a background to this was a Doom painting. The screen, loft, rood and Doom painting were probably all destroyed by iconoclasts in the 1540s. : Church, Essex, Vange, All Saints, Norman, Rood Stairs
8 Vange, Basildon - All Saints Rood Stairs
Vange, Basildon - All Saints Rood Stairs  All Saints Rood Stairs : Church, Essex, Vange, All Saints, Norman, Rood Stairs
9 Vange, Basildon - All Saints Rood Stairs
Wakes Colne - All Saints  12th century Norman church with many windows remaining, and with a Norman doorway.  but also with lovely Tudor brick windows in the north and south walls of the chancel. The extreme thickness of the walls at the chancel arch suggests that before the chancel was rebuilt in the 14th century, there had been a Norman central tower. The timber belfry is 15th century. : Church, Essex, Wakes, Colne, All Saints, Norman, C12, C14
10 Wakes Colne - All Saints
Waltham Abbey - Holy Cross & St Lawrence  The original Saxon church on this site was replaced with a stone church by Harold Godwinson, later King Harold II, following a miraculous healing after praying here. Harold was later killed at the Battle of Hastings and his body buried under the church. In 1177 the original community of 13 secular canons established by Harold was replaced by a larger community of 26 canons by Henry II as part of his penance for the murder of Thomas Becket in 1170. It became an abbey in 1184, at which time the church building was huge: about 3 times the size of the present nave.  Waltham Abbey in medieval times was a huge source of power, wealth and influence. It was a focus of pilgrimage throughout the Middle Ages. When Henry VIII ordered the dissolution of the Abbey and the destruction of its buildings (in 1540) he took to himself that power, and that wealth, and that influence. : Church, Essex, Waltham, Abbey, Norman, Tudor, Holy Cross
11 Waltham Abbey - Holy Cross & St Lawrence
Waltham Abbey - Holy Cross & St Lawrence - Tower  A large part of the Norman abbey church was demolished in 1540 following which the building became unstable. As a result, the church tower was built in 1556, as a buttress. This is the only church tower to be built in the reign of Mary Tudor. : Church, Essex, Waltham, Abbey, Norman, Tudor
12 Waltham Abbey - Holy Cross & St Lawrence - Tower
Waltham Abbey Interior  Waltham Abbey Interior. The columns and arches above are Norman: the east windows and surrounding stonework and the reredos with scenes from the nativity were added in the latter half of the 19th century.  This church was originally part of the Abbey church; medieval pilgrims would have seen a building three times as long as the present nave. There was a low screen separating the nave from the canonical parts of the church, which meant that when the abbey was destroyed in 1540,  the townspeople were able to claim the nave as their parish church and it was allowed to remain. : Church, Essex, Waltham, Abbey, Norman, Tudor, Arcade
13 Waltham Abbey Interior
Waltham Abbey - Lady Chapel Doom  This early fifteenth century Doom painting shows the Day of Judgement. It was covered up with whitewash during the reformation and only rediscovered in 1876 : Church, Essex, Waltham, Abbey, Norman, Tudor, Doom Painting
14 Waltham Abbey - Lady Chapel Doom
Waltham Abbey - Detail of Doom Painting  Detail of the Doom painting in the Lady Chapel - the Key to Heaven : Church, Essex, Waltham, Abbey, Norman, Tudor, Doom Painting
15 Waltham Abbey - Detail of Doom Painting
Waltham Abbey Lady Chapel - Jaws of Hell  Detail of the Doom painting in the Lady Chapel showing a demonic creature welcoming sinners into the maw of Hell, where even more ferocious creatures are waiting beyond the flames ...... : Church, Essex, Waltham, Abbey, Norman, Tudor, Doom Painting
16 Waltham Abbey Lady Chapel - Jaws of Hell
Walton on the Naze - All Saints  The old name of Walton-le-Soken (still visible on the Church today) shows that the area once formed a “soken” with its neighbours Kirby and Thorpe, under the jurisdiction of St Paul's Cathredral, the principal landowner of the area. Due to coastal erosion, the original village of Walton now lies a mile out to sea, and with it, the old parish church, which finally succumbed to the waves in 1798. The current church on an inland site was built from 1873 onwards, the tower completed in 1896 using Kentish ragstone. : Church, Essex, Walton on the Naze, Warley, Chapel, Garrison
17 Walton on the Naze - All Saints
Warley - Chapel of Anglian and Essex Regiments  The Garrison Chapel of Anglian and Essex Regiments was built in 1857 on the site of the East India Company riding school. The Company had moved to Warley and established its Depot at Warley Barracks in 1843. After the Indian Mutiny the troops of the East India Company were absorbed into the British Army. In 1881 Warley became the home of the Essex Regiment.  The chapel's interior contains displays of the history of the Essex Regiment, memorials, heraldry, and old regimental colours. Regular monthly services are held in the chapel which is also open by appointment, and on regimental heritage days. : Church, Essex, Warley, Chapel, Garrison, Regiments, Anglian
18 Warley - Chapel of Anglian and Essex Regiments
Warley - West Window  The rose window above the main entrance door. In the centre are three Saxon seax knives,which is  the logo of Essex County Council. : Church, Essex, Warley, Chapel, Regiments, Anglian, Window, Garrison
19 Warley - West Window
Warley - Christ Church  Christ Church was built in 1853 as a district church, to serve the growing population at the north end of Great Warley parish. The original building consisted of nave and tower: the south aise was added in 1877 and the chancel, in 1891 on land given to the church by the East India Company. A gate was built to allow access to the church from the barracks parade grounds. : Church, Essex, Warley, Christ, Christchurch
20 Warley - Christ Church
Warley - Holy Cross & All Saints  Holy Cross is a Roman Catholic church. It was built in 1881 as a mission church for use by the catholic soldiers of Warley Barracks. The north aisle was added in 1896. : Church, Essex, Warley, Holy Cross, Catholic
21 Warley - Holy Cross & All Saints
Weeley - St Andrew  The 16th century tower is of Tudor brick. The rest of the church: nave, chancel, north aisle, vestry & porch,  was rebuilt in 1881 by Robins, also in brick. : Church, Essex, Weeley, St Andrew, Tudor
22 Weeley - St Andrew
Weeley - St Andrew  St Andrew's church is outside the village on a slight rise overlooking farmland, seemingly miles from everywhere. : Church, Essex, Weeley, St Andrew, Tudor
23 Weeley - St Andrew
Wendens Ambo - St Mary the Virgin  Originally Norman, with a characteristic squat Norman tower. The chancel and south aisle were added during the 13th century. In the 15th century the clerestory was added with three windows to each side, the easternmost pair being of brick but inserted only a few years after the clerestory was built. The south porch was rebuilt c.1895, and at the same time the organ chamber was added. The north aisle was rebuilt in 1847. The building is Grade I listed. : Church, Essex, Wendens Ambo, St Mary, Norman, C13, C15, Clerestory, Grade 1
24 Wendens Ambo - St Mary the Virgin
Wendens Ambo - St Mary: Nave  Originally Norman, the church has been added to and extended many times. The south aisle with circular piers is 13th century, and the north aisle which has octagonal piers was re-built in 1847. The nave clerestory with three windows to either side was added in c.1500. The chancel is c.1300 and there are remnants of medieval wall paintings depicting the life of Saint Margaret on the south chancel wall. The rood screen dates from the 15th century. : Church, Essex, Wendens Ambo, St Mary, Norman, C13, C15, Clerestory, Grade 1, Arcade, Interior
25 Wendens Ambo - St Mary: Nave
Wendens Ambo - St Mary: Wall Painting  On the south wall of the chancel are wall paintings dated c.1330 depicting scenes from the life of Saint Margaret of Antioch : Church, Essex, Wendens Ambo, St Mary, Norman, C13, C15, Clerestory, St Margaret, Painting, Medieval
26 Wendens Ambo - St Mary: Wall Painting
Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Copies  Modern representation of medieval wall paintings on the south wall on the chancel : Church, Essex, Wendens Ambo, St Mary, Norman, C13, C15, Clerestory, Painting
27 Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Copies
Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Screen  Detail from fifteenth century rood screen : Church, Essex, Wendens Ambo, St Mary, C15, Rood, Screen
28 Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Screen
Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Screen 2  Detail from fifteenth century rood screen : Church, Essex, Wendens Ambo, St Mary, C15, Rood, Screen
29 Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Screen 2
Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Screen 3  Detail from fifteenth century rood screen : Church, Essex, Wendens Ambo, St Mary, C15, Rood, Screen
30 Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Screen 3
Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Boar  15th century bench end carving of a boar with one foot on a mirror.  The meaning of this carving is not known, but there is an ancient apocryphal tale of a hunter attempting to steal a tiger cub from its mother. To stop the mother tiger pursuing him, the cunning hunter drops a mirror. The mother tiger becomes distracted by her own reflection, believing her cub trapped is trapped inside the object: She stops her pursuit and waits by the mirror, and the crafty hunter is able to escape with the real cub. Perhaps this tale was also told about other wild beasts. Or, mirrors generally represent vanity and pride: perhaps there is an allegorical meaning to the statue: we will never transcend our bestial nature unless we learn to attend first to our inner beauty. : Church, Essex, Wendens Ambo, St Mary, Norman, C13, C15, Boar, Carving
31 Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Boar
Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Brass  William Loveney, c.1410, in armour with a diagonal sword belt, and resting his feet on a lion. The representation of a lion at the foot of a funeral effigy symbolized the nobility and courage of the deceased, and hope for the afterlife. : Church, Essex, Wendens Ambo, St Mary, Norman, C13, C15, Brass
32 Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Brass
Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Brass Lion  Brass of William Loveney, c.1410, and lion. Lion cubs were erroneously believed to be born dead, then come alive after three days - a clear symbol of the Resurrection. Furthermore people believed that a lion never closed its eyes: thus lions implied vigilance. The representation of a lion at the foot of a funeral effigy symbolized the nobility and courage of the deceased, and hope for the afterlife. : Church, Essex, Wendens Ambo, St Mary, Norman, C13, C15, Brass
33 Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Brass Lion
Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Font  The plain font is octagonal, c.1400, with a 16th century domed cover. : Church, Essex, Wendens Ambo, St Mary, Norman, C13, C15, Clerestory
34 Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Font
Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Pulpit  The beautifully carved pulpit has nine sides and tapers slightly towards the top. It is late 15th century. : Church, Essex, Wendens Ambo, St Mary, C15, Pulpit
35 Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Pulpit
Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Medieval Glass  Fragments of medieval and C16 Flemish stained glass were re-set in the north window of the chancel in 1986. : Wendens Ambo, Church, St Mary, Norman, C13, C15, Stained, Glass, Medieval, Flemish, Essex
36 Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Medieval Glass
Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Medieval Glass 2  Fragments of medieval and C16 Flemish stained glass were re-set in the north window of the chancel in 1986. : Wendens Ambo, Church, St Mary, Norman, C13, C15, Stained, Glass, Medieval, Flemish, Essex, Clerestory
37 Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Medieval Glass 2
Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Medieval Glass 3  Fragments of medieval and C16 Flemish stained glass were re-set in the north window of the chancel in 1986. : Wendens Ambo, Church, St Mary, Norman, C13, C15, Stained, Glass, Medieval, Flemish, Essex, Clerestory
38 Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Medieval Glass 3
Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Medieval Glass 4  Fragments of medieval and C16 Flemish stained glass were re-set in the north window of the chancel in 1986. : Wendens Ambo, Church, St Mary, Norman, C13, C15, Stained, Glass, Medieval, Flemish, Essex, Clerestory
39 Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Medieval Glass 4
Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Medieval Glass 5  Fragments of medieval and C16 Flemish stained glass were re-set in the north window of the chancel in 1986. : Wendens Ambo, Church, St Mary, Norman, C13, C15, Stained, Glass, Medieval, Flemish, Essex, Clerestory
40 Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Medieval Glass 5
Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Medieval Glass 6  Fragments of medieval and C16 Flemish stained glass were re-set in the north window of the chancel in 1986. : Wendens Ambo, Church, St Mary, Norman, C13, C15, Stained, Glass, Medieval, Flemish, Essex, Clerestory
41 Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Medieval Glass 6
Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Medieval Glass 7  Fragments of medieval and C16 Flemish stained glass were re-set in the north window of the chancel in 1986. : Wendens Ambo, Church, St Mary, Norman, C13, C15, Stained, Glass, Medieval, Flemish
42 Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Medieval Glass 7
Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Medieval Glass 8  Fragments of medieval and C16 Flemish stained glass were re-set in the north window of the chancel in 1986. : Wendens Ambo, Church, St Mary, Norman, C13, C15, Stained, Glass, Medieval, Flemish, Essex, Clerestory
43 Wendens Ambo - St Mary - Medieval Glass 8
Wennington - St Mary St Peter  A restored medieval church of rubble with limestone dressings, with early Norman foundations, with the nave, chancel and south aisle rebuilt in the 13th century. A 12th century Norman round-arched door way survived, although it has been moved to its present location. The tower came later: and is probably 14th century although it retains the low, broad, unbuttressed appearance of the early Middle Ages. : Church, Essex, Wennington, St Mary, St Peter, C13, C14
44 Wennington - St Mary St Peter
West Bergholt - St Mary the Virgin  This church was built in 1904 to replace old St Mary's, which was in a poor state of repair and located some distance from the modern vilage centre. Oddly, the church building was never completed and the back wall was still covered in corrugated iron cladding in 2015. : Church, Essex, West, Bergholt, St Mary
45 West Bergholt - St Mary the Virgin
West Bergholt - St Mary the Virgin  St Mary's church was designed by Sir Arthur Bloomfield and Son and dedicated on 12 August 1904.  Three bays of the nave and a south aisle were built. However the church was never completed, and  the back wall is still (as at 2015) covered in corrugated iron cladding. : Church, Essex, West, Bergholt, St Mary
46 West Bergholt - St Mary the Virgin
West Hanningfield - St Mary & St Edward  The church has a Norman nave, the remains of a 13th century chancel. The south arcade and south aisle were added in the 14th century. The current chancel was built in the early 16th century. The timber porch was built in 1500 and has a crown post roof. The timber framed cruciform tower was built in the 14th century. The tower construction is unusual, with arched braces in all four directions, buttressing struts in the arms of the cross, and in the upper floor arched braces like ribs meet at a central boss carved with a grotesque face. : Church, Essex, West, Hanningfield, St Mary, Norman, C14, C16
47 West Hanningfield - St Mary & St Edward
West Hanningfield - SS Mary & Edward - Tower  The 14th century timber tower stands against the west wall of the south aisle. It was built to a cruciform shape at ground level (each arm is independently gabled), with a square bell tower and an octagonal spire. The tower was originally covered in wattle and daub but is now weatherboarded. There are two Gothic windows on the south side of the ground floor, and an oriel was built into the upper section in the 17th century to accommodate a larger peal of bells. : Church, Essex
48 West Hanningfield - SS Mary & Edward - Tower
West Mersea - St Peter & St Paul  The early Norman tower once dominated the settlement of 'Meresai', and is built on the site of a earlier Roman fort which was used as a defence against Saxon raiders. In the 14th century, further height was added to the tower in the section containing the belfry-louvres and battlements. Grade I Listed. : Church, Essex, West, Mersea, St Peter, Grade 1
49 West Mersea - St Peter & St Paul
West Mersea - St Peter & St Paul - Interior  The photo shows the wall of the South Aisle, constructed in the 15th century and extended with Tudor roof in the 15th century. The recently re-pointed south wall, rebuilt in 1833, is incongruous with the rest of of the church interior. To the right of the door over the small brass plate, is a small Saxon carving. It is not clear how it got into a wall originating in the 15th century. Above the door is a lunette of Christ and the Angels in the style of a Rennaissance Florentine sculpture, dated 1907. Below,  a wooden frame with no apparent purpose.  On the right, a window is boarded up by a painting of St Christoper presented to the church in 1939. Obscuring it is a modern mosaic perched on a specially built shelf.  To the left (out of shot) is an aluminium ladder wedged between the pews and wall, right next to the 15th century piscina.   This hodge-podge is topped off with 21st century church banners propped up all along the south aisle, one of which had to be moved to view the Saxon carving fragment and inscription. The taste in banners extends back into the chancel where the pulpit hanging, and altar frontal, display a symbol of a brushmarked cross over a yellow blob, with olive background.  Add another brush-stroke and you have the famous "Circle-A" symbol so beloved of anarchists and punks in the 70s. : Church, Essex, West, Mersea, St Peter, Grade 1
50 West Mersea - St Peter & St Paul - Interior
West Mersea - St Peter & St Paul - Saxon  Fragment of Saxon carving : Church, Essex, West, Mersea, St Peter, Grade 1
51 West Mersea - St Peter & St Paul - Saxon
West Thurrock - St Clements  Grade I listed church preserved by Proctor & Gamble whose factory looms behind the church. It stood alone on the Thames side marshes until recent industrialisation. The 12th century church had a round tower which doubled as a round nave.The chancel was later enlarged and the round tower replaced with a larger west tower in the 15th century. : Church, Essex, West, Thurrock, St Clements, Grade 1, round tower
52 West Thurrock - St Clements
West Tilbury - St James (Private)  This 11th and 12th century church, with 14th century windows, is now private although access to the graveyard is allowed. : Church, Essex, West, Tilbury, St James
53 West Tilbury - St James (Private)
Westcliff - Avenue Baptist  Partially completed by F.E Smee in 1901: a planned tower over the entrance porch was never built. Brick with Bath stone dressings. : Church, Essex, Westcliffe, Baptist
54 Westcliff - Avenue Baptist
Westcliff - St Alban the Martyr  One of the more interesting turn-of-the-century churches around Southend. An early work of architect Sir Charles Nicholson 1898-1908 designed in flint and red brick, with a south east tower. : Church, Essex, Westcliffe, St Alban
55 Westcliff - St Alban the Martyr
Westcliff - St Alban - Chancel  Beneath the painted ceiling, the entire east wall of the chancel displays two tiers of figures in canopied niches. The central Nativity scene is flanked by the four patron saints of the British Isles. Behind the high altar the dark panelling serves as a backdrop to a striking picture of the Annunciation. : Church, Essex, Westcliffe, St Alban, Interior, Chancel, Altar
56 Westcliff - St Alban - Chancel
Westcliff-on-Sea - Our Lady & St Helen  A Catholic church designed by architect Goodman and built at a cost £1,700, opened for services in October 1869. The south and north aisles were added at the turn of the century by Scoles. : Church, Essex, Westcliffe, Our Lady, Catholic
57 Westcliff-on-Sea - Our Lady & St Helen
Westcliff-on-Sea - Park Road Methodist  The former Wesleyan Chapel (Park Road Methodist Church), built in Kentish ragstone in 1870, was Southend’s first Methodist Church and considered at the time to be "one of the greatest ornaments of Southend”. It is in the Milton Conservation Area of Southend, but sadly, it is now locked and boarded up. : Architecture, Church, Essex, Southend, Park Road, Methodist
58 Westcliff-on-Sea - Park Road Methodist
Westcliff - St Alban Iron Clad  The first church on the St Alban's site was the iron "Mission Room" erected in 1892, as a daughter church of St Mary, Prittlewell.  By 1897, £1290 had been raised to fund a larger church, while the original building continued use as a church hall. As Southend expanded as a seaside resort in the late 19th century, the religious needs of the increasing population were catered for by new mission churches, initially housed in temporary corrugated iron chapels, bought from catalogues and erected quickly and relatively cheaply. Known colloquially as 'Tin Tabernacles', few of these early corrugated iron chapels survive. : Church, Essex, Westcliffe, St Alban, Mission, Tin, Tabernacle
59 Westcliff - St Alban Iron Clad
Wethersfield - St Mary & St Magdalene  SS Mary & Magdalene is placed high up near the village green, and contains some earlier Saxon build. Its massive unbuttressed 13th century tower would have provided a use for defence as well as worship. The church has a very quiet atmosphere but the fairly austere nave seems cold, while the Victorian stained glass of the chancel creates a gloomy feel. Grade I listed. : Church, Essex, Wethersfield, St Mary, C13, Grade 1
60 Wethersfield - St Mary & St Magdalene
Wethersfield - St Mary & St Magdalene - The Wentworths  Wethersfield - Wentworth and Wife (1482) : Church, Essex, Wethersfield, St Mary, C13, Grade 1, Monument
61 Wethersfield - St Mary & St Magdalene - The Wentworths
Wethersfield - St Mary & St Magdalene - Wentworth Monument  Alabaster tomb effigies of Henry Wentworth and his wife and his dog, of nearby Codham Hall (1482). : Church, Essex, Wethersfield, St Mary, C13, Grade 1, Monument
62 Wethersfield - St Mary & St Magdalene - Wentworth Monument
White Colne - St Andrew  The nave has Norman origins, the chancel and tower, 14th century. The whole was rebuilt in 1869/72 by C J Moxon, who added a north porch and heightened the tower adding battlements and a shingled spire. : Church, Essex, White, Colne, St Andrew, C14
63 White Colne - St Andrew
White Notley - St Etheldreda  This Grade I listed church dates from the 11th century. The chancel arch is Norman, dressed with Roman bricks. The chancel itself was altered during the 13th century when the south aisle was added; the north aisle was added a few years later. The timber tower and roof are 15th century.  Internally there are some medieval wall paintings, some indistinct but some clearly representing a Passion cycle, and a rare medieval stained glass window. Sadly though, the church is locked.  St Etheldreda was an East Anglian princess, a Fenland and Northumbrian queen and Abbess of Ely. She founded a double monastery (with separate communities of monks and nuns, combined in one institution) in Ely in 673, which was later destroyed by Viking invaders in 870. : Church, Essex, White, Notley, St Etheldreda, Norman, C11, Grade 1
64 White Notley - St Etheldreda
White Notley - St Etheldreda - Porch  The south porch and south door are 14th century : Church, Essex, White, Notley, Etheldreda, Norman, Grade 1, C14, Porch
65 White Notley - St Etheldreda - Porch
White Roding - St Martin  The nave was built in the 11th or early in the 12th century, and the chancel re-built in the 14th century.  The tower was re-built early in the 16th century and the south porch added about a century later. The building was restored in the late 19th century when the vestry was added. The door at the entrance to the tower stairs is 15th century; there is ironwork on the south door which dates back to the 13th century; and the font (which is of Purbeck marble) is 12th century. : Church, Essex, White, Roding, Norman, C16, C14
66 White Roding - St Martin
Wicken Bonhunt - St Helen's Chapel  A Saxon chapel built in the 10th century, constructed of small flint and pebble with stone quoins under a thatched roof. A major middle Saxon settlement was found near the chapel during excavations in the early 1970s, during construction of the M11. It showed signs of  late Bronze Age, Saxon as well as Norman activity and included a burial ground around Chapel of St Helen containing over 200 human remains.The most prominent Saxon features are the slight thickness of the walls, the sloping jambs of the windows and the large stones at the bases of all the quoins. The one Norman feature present, the base of the window in the north wall of the chapel, was thought to have been added subsequently. : Church, Essex, Saxon, Wicken, Bonhunt, St Helen, C10
67 Wicken Bonhunt - St Helen's Chapel
Wicken Bonhunt - St Margaret  A church has stood in the small village of Wicken Bonhunt since the 12th century, when it had a round tower. The oldest part today is the 13th century chancel with lancet windows. In 1857 the nave, tower and porch were rebuilt by John Sperling, the rich parson, to his own "Decorated" Gothic designs.  One mile to the east of the church is the thatched Norman chapel of St Helen, reputed to be the second oldest building in Essex. : Church, Essex, Wicken, Bonhunt, St Margaret
68 Wicken Bonhunt - St Margaret
Wickford - St Catherine  Sensitively restored by Henry Stone in 1876, retaining the 15th century Early English style of architecture. The timber bellcote with open framework is interesting. : Wickford, Church, St.Catherine, bellcote
69 Wickford - St Catherine
Wickford - St Catherine Interior  1876 rebuild, but a church has stood on this site since at least 1154, when Robert of Essex placed the church with Prittlewell Priory, which he had recently founded. In the chancel the roof is reused work of c.1500 from the earlier church. A north aisle was planned but not built as can be seen from the blind arcade. : Wickford, Church, Essex
70 Wickford - St Catherine Interior
Wickham Bishops - St Bartholomew  The church was built in 1850 and is a fine example of Victorian gothic architecture. The spire is 120 feet high. It was built to replace the redundant St Peter's, to the west of the village centre. : Church, Essex, Wickham, Bishops, St Bartholomew: Spire
71 Wickham Bishops - St Bartholomew
Wickham Bishops - St Bartholomews - Pew  Poppyhead Pew: probably trnsferred from St Peters : Church, Essex, Wickham Bishops: St Bartholomew, Poppyhead, Pew
72 Wickham Bishops - St Bartholomews - Pew
Wickham Bishops - St Peter  In the Domesday Survey of 1086, the manor of Wickham Bishops was recorded as belonging to the Bishops of London. It is possible that this church was originally constructed as a private chapel for the use of the Bishops when staying in the manor.  The 12th century church was declared redundant in 1970 and is in the care of The Friends of Friendless Churches. In recent years it has been used as a workshop for a local stained glass artist. : Church, Essex, Wickham, Bishops, St Peter, C12
73 Wickham Bishops - St Peter
Wickham Bishops - St Peter - North Wall  A new church, St Bartholomew's, was built in Wickham Bishops in 1850 and St Peter's became a chapel of ease.The font, holy water stoup and parish chest were taken to the new church.   St Peter's church was declared redundant in 1970. More recently, it has been in use as a stained glass workshop. : Church, Essex, Wickham, Bishops, C12, St Peter
74 Wickham Bishops - St Peter - North Wall
Widdington - St Mary the Virgin  The walls are of flint and pebble rubble with dressings of limestone; the roofs are covered with tiles and slate. The only remaining part of the original 12th century church is a window in the north wall of the Chancel. The nave was rebuilt probably in the 15th century, when the north vestry was added. The church was completely restored in 1872, when the tower was rebuilt and the south porch added.  There is a brass monument on the north wall of the nave depicting a civilian in a loose belted cloak, dating from around 1460 and the south door is also 15th century; the piscina in the chancel is older, dating from the 13th century.  The church recently suffered a break-in when some antique brass candlesticks and chairs were stolen. : Church, Essex, Widdington, St Mary, C15
75 Widdington - St Mary the Virgin
Widford - St Mary  Built in 1862 by the owner of the nearby Hylands Estate to replace an earlier church which had stood here for many centuries. The church is built in Kentish rag-stone. The 145 foot freestone spire marks the gateway to Chelmsford from the A12. : Church, Essex, Widford, st Mary
76 Widford - St Mary
Willingale Doe - St Christopher  St. Christophers Church shares Willingale churchyard with St Andrews Church.The churches are now united into one parish, but until 1929 there were two separate parishes in the village, each with its own rector.   The parish of Willingale Doe derives the adjunct to its name from  the D’ou family who came to live in Willingale in the 14th century. Around this time the wool industry was flourishing in Essex, and the population of Willingale grew rapidly. The existing church was too small to accommodate the increased number of worshippers, and rather than pull down the old church and replace it with a new one, a second church was built next to the original.    The walls of the church are of flint-rubble mixed with some fragments of freestone and Roman brick; the roofs are tiled. The chancel and nave were built c.1360–70, probably on the site of an earlier church. About the middle of the 15th century the tower and porch were added. The church was restored in the 19th century, when the north aisle was added and the tower and porch largely re-built. : Church, Essex, Willingale, Doe, St Christopher
77 Willingale Doe - St Christopher
Willingale Doe - St Christopher - Interior  The elaborate allabaster and marble monument in the chancel is to Robert Wiseman 1641, Richard Wiseman 1618 and his wife Mary, 1635. There are several other memorials in the chancel and nave. One of the memorial brasses which dates from around 1400 commemorates a member of the Torrell family. He is shown in full armour with his dog at his feet.  The church also contains a 15th century octagonal stone font with decorative carving on each face. : Church, Essex, Willingale, Doe, St Christopher
78 Willingale Doe - St Christopher - Interior
Willingale Doe - Brass  St Christopher's Church memorial brass. Believed to be in memory of a member of the Torrell family, wearing armour, with his dog at his feet. Circa 1400. : Church, Essex, Willingale, Doe, St Christopher
79 Willingale Doe - Brass
Willingale Spain -St Andrews  St. Andrews Church shares Willingale churchyard with St Christophers Church.The churches are now united into one parish, but until 1929 there were two separate parishes in the village, each with its own rector.   The parish of Willingale Spain derives the adjunct to its name from the family of Hervey de Spain, to whom it belonged at the time of the Domesday survey.  The 12th century church, dedicated to St Andrew and All Saints, consists of  a nave and chancel, with a small spire. There are 2 bells, one of which has a 15th century inscription.  Roman tiles or bricks have been used for the corners of the church, and as a frame for the plain round-headed Norman north door.  There are two tiny narrow splayed original windows in the north wall, one pointed, the other rounded.  On the south side is an elegant lancet window, 6ft. high by 11 inches wide.  The north and south chancel windows date from the time of Henvy VI. : Church, Essex, Willingale, Spain, St Andrews, C12
80 Willingale Spain -St Andrews
Willingale Spain - St Andrews interior  The octagonal font dates from the late 14th century. It is decorated with quatrefoils in circles, and with panels containing carved roses and heads. In the chancel are 15th-century piscinae and an oolite altar slab with carved crosses. Also in the church are memorials dated 1614 in memory of the children of the rector. The organ was made in 1905 by Thomas S. Jones and Son, but had been removed by 1997.  During WW2 Willingale was the base of the 387th Bombardment Division of the USAAF which flew B-26 Marauders and St Andrew's and All Saints was used as the base church. There is a permanent display inside the church commemorating this link.  The church is no longer in regular use and is cared for by the Churches Conservation Trust. : Church, Essex, Willingale, Spain, St Andrews, C12, USAAF
81 Willingale Spain - St Andrews interior
Witham - St Nicholas  The church of St Nicolas was built in the 1330's and apart from two additions on either side, has remained unchanged since then. The two storey vestry in the north east corner was added in the latter half of the 14th century, perhaps to provide facilities for a mass ordination of 49 priests, deacons and acolytes which took place in the church in 1366. The south porch was added late in the 14th century. The south chapel, dedicated to St Mary, was built in the mid 15th century and the north chapel, dedicated to St John the Baptist, was built a few years later. In the 550 years since the chapels were built, no stone has been added to this church other than for renewal or repair. The church is Grade I listed.  The south doorway is 12th century, reset from an earlier Norman church built on the same site. : Church, Essex
82 Witham - St Nicholas
Witham - St Nicholas -  Montage  During the 1877 restoration work, a stained glass enthusiast noted that the internal walls were "coloured a deep red, diapered with flaming stars in black".    The alabaster figures represent John and Elizabeth Southcote. John Southcote was a judge during the reign of Elizabeth I. In the early years of Elitabeth's reign her attitude to Catholics was fairly relaxed, and so long as they were loyal to her, they were free to believe what they wished. Although the saying of mass had been punishable by death since 1559, Elizabeth had ensured this penalty was not implemented.  However in 1570 Pope Pius V released a Papal Bull excommunicating Elizabeth and absolving her subjects from allegience to her and her laws. This caused much concern in England. Catholics came to be seen as a threat to the Crown. Many plots against the Queen were discovered and Catholicism became tantamout to treason. The death penalty was no longer theoretical.  John Southcote was judge at one such trial of a Catholic priest where the only possibe outcome was the death penalty. Rather than condemn the priest to death, he stood up, threw off his judge's robes and then and there, resigned his post. He died a few years later, in Witham and is memorialised wearing the robes he so dramatically removed in court. : Church, Essex, Witham, St Nicholas: Interior
83 Witham - St Nicholas - Montage
Witham - Holy Family RC Church  This Early English Gothic Ragstone church, designed by Daniel Cubitt Nichols, was opened by Cardinal Wiseman in 1851.  As Witham expanded, the number of Catholic worshippers grew and in 1966 a chapel of ease was set up in Silver End: but Holy Family church was still too small. In 1989 the parish acquired the then-redundant Anglican church of All Saints in Guithavon Street; a much bigger church capable of holding up to 700 people. The last Mass at Holy Family church was held in December 1988 and the building has since been converted to private use. : Church, Essex, Witham, Holy Family, Catholic
84 Witham - Holy Family RC Church
Wivenhoe - St Mary the Virgin  A church existed on this site from at least 1254, and its early remains exist as the north wall of  St Mary's. The interior was rebuilt, the north arcade dating from c.1340 and the south from c.1350. Prior to the rebuild,  the chancel arch was described as "low, with massive piers",  suggesting a Norman origin. A chantry Chapel was dedicated in 1413.  The tower was added in the 15th century with diagonal buttresses and a foundation of Roman brick. By 1734 the building had  large windows in the Georgian Gothic style and internal galleries with box pews below. After a fire in 1850 it was decided to rebuild and enlarge the church according to the designs of the architect E C Hakewill.  Further restoration was required after the tower, and a pillar in the north isle, were damaged by the most destructive earthquake in recorded British history: the 1884 Colchester Earthquake. : Church, Essex
85 Wivenhoe - St Mary the Virgin
Woodham Ferrers - St Mary  The south aisle was re-built early in the 14th century. The porch was added in the 15th century.  Late in the same century a west tower was added but this fell in 1703, was re-built in brick in 1715, but has since been removed, and now only the stumps of the side walls remain. : Church, Essex, Woodham, Ferrers, St Mary, C12, C14, Grade 1
86 Woodham Ferrers - St Mary
Woodham Ferrers - St Mary - WEst  This lovely old flint and brick church dates from the 13th, 14th and 15th centuries, and although it was extensively remodelled in Victorian times, many original features remain.  There was a 16th century tower, but this collapsed in 1703 and was rebuilt on a smaller scale in 1715, but again by 1774 this was unsafe and so in 1793 a small wooden belfry, resting a a single oak tie-beam,  was built to house the one remaining bell. In the 19th century, a window was installed in the west wall with supporting brickwork. The church is Grade I listed. Inside the church, there is a three bay arcade with alternating octagonal and circulars piers dating from 1260, and a faded 15th century Doom painting. The font is late 14th / early 15th century, and  there are several 15th century poppy-head bench-ends.  Externally, you can see doorways dating from the 14th century. Some of the window tracery was installed shortly after 1275. : Church, Essex, Woodham, Ferrers, St Mary, C12, C14, Grade 1
87 Woodham Ferrers - St Mary - WEst
Woodham Mortimer - St Margaret  The church was rebuilt in the 19th century,  except for the south wall of the nave which has one small Norman window and the rear-arch of a doorway. The church is adjacent to the old rectory, now Woodham Mortimer Hall, the former home of Peter Chamberlen 1601-1683, the physician to James I, Charles I and Charles II. : Church, Essex, Woodham, Mortimer, St Margaret
88 Woodham Mortimer - St Margaret
Woodham Walter - St Michael the Archangel  The church of St Michael the Archangel in Woodham Walter is the only Elizabethan church in Essex, and one of only 6 in England.  Built in 1563, this church is believed to be the first consecrated after the Elizabethan Settlement of 1559, and as such has a claim to be the first purpose-built Church of England church.  When Elizabeth I inherited the throne in 1558 the country had suffered almost 25 years of religious turmoil between Catholics and Protestants. One of Elizabeth's first priorities was to resolve this dispute. She managed to find a middle way between the opposing views by establishing a Church that was moderately reformist in doctrine, whilst also emphasising continuity with its catholic and apostolic traditions. To achieve this she passed two laws in 1559: the Act of Supremacy, which re-established the Church of England's independence from Rome, and the Act of Uniformity which set out the form the English church would now take, including establishing the Book of Common Prayer. Collectively, these Acts are known as the Elizabethan Settlement.  Although the church building dates from 1563 much of the interior, including the font and the pillars between the nave and the north aisle, is older and may have come from a previous church. There is some graffiti scrawled on the pillars (saying 'William Barton' in different styles), which has been dated as between 1450 and 1500. The church is open during daylight hours for people to visit. : Church, Essex, Woodham, Walter, C16
89 Woodham Walter - St Michael the Archangel
Wormingford - St Andrews  This 12th century church is built of rubble, flint, and Roman bricks. The church was remodelled in the 14th and 15th centuries and heavily restored in 1870. It is believed that a Saxon church previously existed on the site, with a  bell tower which doubled as a look out post watching for Viking raiders coming up the Stour. The porch is Victorian, with a late 14th century doorway inside; above which can be seen the arch of the original 12th century entrance.The building is Grade I listed.  In the churchyard is the grave of the artist John Nash R.A.. : Church, Essex, Wormingford, St Andrews, C12, Grade 1
90 Wormingford - St Andrews
Wormingford - St Andrews - East Window, North Aisle  This window inside St Andrews commemorates the battle between Sir George Marney and a dragon which occurred in Wormingford around 1200 AD.  After the Siege of Acre, and the end of the Jerusalem Crusades, Richard the Lionheart embarked for the Adriatic, taking with him a 'cokadrille' which was given to the King (together with other gifts) in return for the support given to the claim of Lusignan to the throne of Jerusalem. The gift of this serpent or 'worm' with "great nails and talons" was at the time thought to be a dragon The King brought the beast to England in 1194 and lodged it in a strong cage at the Tower of London.  Over the years the beast grew huge, smashed its cage and escaped into the Thames. Eventually it found its way to that small settlement on the banks of the Stour called Withermundford, devouring livestock and villagers along the way. The villagers were terrified at the new arrival and a rumour spread among them that it could only be pacified with human sacrifice and so long as the supply lasted they fed the creature with virgins to keep it happy. However, even in those days, Essex virgins were an extremely rare find and so the supply of food gave out. The villagers, in desperation, pleaded with Sir George Marney (of Layer de la Haye) telling the gallant knight that a fierce dragon had settled with them and which they had tried, in vain to slay with arrows which bounce from its hide and then had pacified it with virgins but, alas, there were no more virgins in the hundred.  The brave knight attacked the dragon with his lance and slew it, and from then to this day, the Parish has been called Wormiton, Wormington and Wormingford in memory of the 'Worm', an early word for Dragon. : Church, Essex, Wormingford, St Andrews, C12, Grade 1, Window, Dragon
91 Wormingford - St Andrews - East Window, North Aisle
Wrabness - All Saints Bell Tower  All Saints Church is largely 12 - 15th century in origin, extended in 1908 . The roof of the chancel was rebuilt in 1697 after the original roof collapsed. There is a doorway in the north wall dating from the early 12th century. At one time the church had a stone tower housing 5 bells, but this collapsed (possibly at the same time as the chancel roof fell in) and has not been rebuilt. In the 17th century, two of the bells were re-located temporarily to a wooden structure in the churchyard, where they remain today. It's known as the bell tower, although it looks more like a bell cage. : Church, Essex, Wrabness, Bell, Tower, Cage, C15
92 Wrabness - All Saints Bell Tower
Writtle - All Saints  The 13th century church in Writtle is relatively large for a village, with embattled nave and aisles, with a brick built chantry chapel added in in the mid-16th century. However Writtle was the major settlement in the area since Norman times and only in recent times has been dwarfed by Chelmsford. The squat tower is a rebuild from 1802.  Internally there is a fragment of a 14th century wall painting of St George and the Dragon - partially obscured by a fire exit sign. : Church, Essex, Writtle: All Saints, C13
93 Writtle - All Saints
Writtle - All Saints - George and the Dragon  Fragments of a wall painting depicting St George and the Dragon, probably 14th century. Church murals were common before the iconclasts whitewashed them over. Later, Victorian church restorers destroyed countless wall paintings as they hacked off the whitewashed plaster to resurface walls.   The fire exit sign is not so old, probably c 1992. We are critical of the philistinism of the Victorian church restorers, but the placement of this sign isn't much better.   A fire exit sign is probably a good idea for this church though - it was seriously damaged by fire in 1974, and again in 1991. : Church, Essex, Writtle, All Saints, St George, Dragon
94 Writtle - All Saints - George and the Dragon