Monday, 1 June 2009


Welcome to this month’s round-up of local history and heritage in and around Blackmore, Essex.

Churches Open To Visitors: Summer 2009

The Priory Church of St Laurence, Blackmore
(From 3 May to 4 October)
Sundays, Wednesdays, Thursdays & Fridays
2.30 – 4.30pm
Teas In The Tower on the 1st Sunday in the month

St Peter & St Paul, Stondon Massey
Sunday 10 May, Sunday 14 June, Sunday 12 July, Sunday 9 August, Sunday 13 September
2.30 – 4.30pm
Teas served

All Saints’, Doddinghurst
Sunday 21 June, Sunday 19 July, Sunday 16 August, Sunday 20 September.
2.30 – 4.30pm
Strawberry Cream Teas on 19 July

St Margaret’s, Stanford Rivers (see photograph)
Every Sunday until the end of September. Teas served.
2.30 – 4.30pm

War Memorial to be Restored

Blackmore Parish Council has announced that the War Memorial on The Green is to be renovated. The granite obelisk will be cleaned, re-engraved and names painted. Alongside it has been decided to erect a flagpole for use on special occasions.

Shingle Replacement on Blackmore’s Timber Bell Tower

Woodpeckers in Blackmore and the surrounding areas need spectacles to differentiate between trees and ancient buildings it seems. The perennial problem of their pecking habits means that after only seven years it is necessary to replace vandalized shingles on the famous bell tower of the Priory Church of St Laurence, in Church Street, Blackmore.

Unfortunately the work is not cheap because the work must be done by a specialist following all the health and safety regulations. Work is currently under way by Caters, who are using a steeplejack to do the spire works. This avoids the costly erection of scaffolding. In all 42 holes in the shingles need to be repaired, with four new shingles required for each hole in order to properly weather, plus twelve in the vertical boarding.

Bariff’s Farm Mystery

Heather Tomkins wrote to me recently: “Do any of your contributors have any knowledge of Bariff's farm, Mountnessing, where my Collyer ancestors farmed in the 1870/1880s? I would be very grateful for any information that is available.” Unfortunately I cannot find any record at all other than the entry in the 1881 census which gives a George Collyer as farmer of 40 acres. My father, who was born and bred in Mountnessing, has never heard of a Bariff’s Farm. Can anyone help?

Another Mountnessing Mystery

Also, older residents of Mountnessing sometimes refer to the place as ‘Tuddick’. I have never seen the name written down. Does anyone know of its origin?

A search on the internet found one item, courtesy of the local radio website, Phoenix FM: “My grandfather, who was born in 1902 … always referred to Mountnessing as Tuddick in fact he wouldn’t have it that the place had any other title. Now I presume that this was widely used name for the place in his younger days – he wouldn’t have made that up and used it all his life, would he? Anyway I have no idea why it was called that and neither did he. Anyone got any ideas?” Posted 12 January 2009.

Walking around Ingatestone

RobWhite1 has posted onto Flicker a series of photos taken in April 2009 entitled ‘Walking Around Ingatestone’. In the sequence are pictures of the gatehouse of Ingatestone Hall, Buttsbury Church by the River Wid and Ingatestone Church from the Fairfield Recreation Ground, plus those smelly oilseed rape flowers. Follow this link for more:


For an extensive list of links to other sites go to:

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