Tuesday, 30 December 2014

High Country History Group: Theydon Mount Church Quatercentenary

High Country History Group: Theydon Mount Church Quatercentenary: Extract from the Theydon Mount Register in 1611 (Photographed at the Celebration Day when the Essex Record Office kindly lent the origina...

Thursday, 25 December 2014

Christmas Day 1914

The Christmas truce of 1914 has become a legendary halt in hostilities in what was a war of attrition, killing millions and lasting four and a half years.  Revd. Edward Henry Lisle Reeve, of Stondon Massey, kept notes for a parish history (now preserved in the Essex Record Office).  He gives this account of Christmas Day 1914 on the Western Front.

28th January 1915

“When travelling by train to London from Ongar on Jan 25th I had for a fellow passenger for part of the way a Lancashire man who had returned wounded and frost-bitten from the front, and was now sufficiently convalescent to be going for a short spell to his native county before returning to France.

“His first-hand report of the conditions of things abroad was very interesting.  He had often been for days together standing in water in the trenches, and the plight of the soldiers in the cold, wet, and filth was, he said indescribable.  The Germans were in as bad or worse plight.  During an interval on Christmas-day some of the enemy had approached our trenches and joined in conversation with our men.  One German soldier had given his cigarettes and offered him brandy. 

“In reply to the German invitation to drink with him the British soldier declined, until by way of assuring him took a pull himself at the flask he was offering!  Lancashire shyness was then overcome, and the soldier accepted a draught of the “Cognac” for such it proved to be.  The time was soon over for these pleasantries, and the two dropped back again into their several positions, having apparently no special desire to kill one another, save at the call of duty!  I wished my fellow passenger a safe return to England at the close of war.”

Friday, 19 December 2014

High Country History Group: Journal No. 54 (December 2014)

High Country History Group: Journal No. 54 (December 2014): Members of the High Country History Group will have received their copy of the Quarterly Journal.  Included in the latest edition are it...

Saturday, 13 December 2014

Brentwood Council Sites for 5500 homes by 2030

Sites in and around the village of Blackmore appear frequently in Brentwood Borough Council's proposals to build 5500 homes across the district by 2030. This just published by the Brentwood Gazette: http://www.brentwoodgazette.co.uk/Proposed-development-areas-Brentwood-revealed/story-25700826-detail/story.html 

Saturday, 6 December 2014

Stondon Massey: Old Folks Christmas Dinner 1980

A photograph taken in 1980, soon after Revd. Montagu Knott became Rector of Stondon Massey.  He had already been Vicar of Blackmore since 1957 and was to remain incumbent until 1985.  Here he is pictured with an unnamed 'old folk'.

Friday, 5 December 2014

ESAH160: ESAH Archives: S/LIB/9/4

ESAH160: ESAH Archives: S/LIB/9/4: Essex Society for Archaeology and History Archives S/LIB/9/4: Blackmore, Stondon Massey, Doddinghurst and Ongar featured in 100 year old notebook.  Publication to follow in 2015 or 2016 on website.

Thursday, 4 December 2014

ESAH160: ESAH Archives: S/LIB/9/3

ESAH160: ESAH Archives: S/LIB/9/3: Essex Society for Archaeology and History Archives S/LIB/9/3 - Ingatestone and Fryerning church references.

Saturday, 29 November 2014

Friday, 28 November 2014

Imperial War Museum's library and services under threat

ESAH160: High Country History Group: Imperial War Museum's ...: High Country History Group members finds out that Imperial War Museum's Library and services are under threat.  £4m annual deficit because of government funding.  Online petition to save closure of unique library, cut in important education services, loss of 60+ jobs. closure of popular 'Explore History' facility in London. Threat of sell off of library contents.

Sunday, 9 November 2014

The Great War Remembered

Part 1

Many thousands of people have been to the Tower of London to view the growing number of poppies in the dry moat.  Between 4 August and 11 November 2014 a total of 888,246 hand-made ceramic poppies were planted.  “Each one represents a British military death during the First World War”.  It was called ‘Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red’.  The very many people there walked quietly along the path above the moat taking photographs.  Described erroneously by someone on television as “pretty” it was a thought provoking piece of art.  The poppies were offered for sale at £25 a time.  All have sold.  (See also http://poppies.hrp.org.uk/ and https://poppies.hrp.org.uk/buy-a-poppy/ ).

These photographs were taken on 1 November 2014.

Part 2

Sir Tony Robinson came to the Essex Record Office in September to speak at an event jointly organised by Ancestry, the family history website.  The Lecture Theatre was full.  In an entertaining and informative talk he spoke on the subject of researching the Great War.  

The Internet has given unparalleled access to archives. “It is now a million times easier to research [family] history”, Tony said.  (He does not like being called Sir Tony.)  His grandfather fought in the Great War but never spoke of the hardships endured and sights witnessed.  “There are whole stories we thought might be lost, but we are starting to re-find them”.  So we can now celebrate “the rediscovery of these stories”.

Sir Tony Robinson gave four reasons why we should remember the Great War. 

“Firstly, there is the ‘never again argument’.  We should observe history and not repeat past mistakes. 

“Secondly, ‘war is a massive engine of social change’”.  The First World War saw the movement of people on a scale not seen before and inventions of weapons of mass destruction.  It was a mechanical and industrial war bogged down in the trenches of the Western Front. It was a different type of war with junior officers leading the charge and senior officers doing their best to organise in the face of mayhem. 

“Thirdly: ‘the impact of a major war stays and stays’”.  The breakup of the Ottoman Empire and the Sykes-Picot agreement of 1916 devised by the major powers which arbitrarily redrew boundaries to create Syria, Iran and Iraq, but ignored cultural ethnicity. 

“Fourthly: ‘to honour our dead’.  We know that our ancestors had the same characteristics, same humour, same DNA as ourselves”. They are remembered in the 120 war grave cemeteries, the 20 million WW1 records on Ancestry (with more photos added as they are being discovered) as well as our War Memorials.

Sunday, 2 November 2014

Mountnessing: The Will of Endymion Canning, 1681

To celebrate the publication of the collection of Wills online held by Essex Ancestors, the subscription arm of the Record Office, up to 1720 we present the Will of Endymion Canning, who has connections with Mountnessing.  For more see http://blackmorehistory.blogspot.co.uk/search?q=canning

made 24th May 1681, codicil added 2nd April 1683 & he died 7th Dec 1863

In the name of God Amen, I Endymion Cannynge of
Brooke in the county of Rutland Genl. (probably General) being in perfect health and of good and perfect
memory for which I give most humble thanks to Almighty God  I do make and
ordain this my last will and testament in manner and form following that is to say
first and before all things I commend my soul into the hands of Almighty God
the maker of me and all mankind my frail and mortal body I commit
to the earth there to be buried in the Church or Churchyard of Brooke or some other
convenient burying place near where I shall happen to die in hopes of joyful
resurrection through the merits and mediation of Jesus Christ my blessed Saviour
and Redeemer And for those few worldly goods I have to dispose of as hereafter is
declared to my dear sister Mrs Jane Wilson I give the sum of One hundred
pounds and to her son Thomas Wilson my nephew the sum of fifty pounds
and also to all my cousins  Jermans  I command that shall be living at the time of my decease I
give and bequeath to every one of them Tenne pounds  apiece besides a gold ring
worth about Twenty shillings with this Motto (Fin sequeris)  Also the same legacy
of a ring but not money I bequeath to my  Cousin Cannyng  of  Foxcot and his wife
to my sister Clutterbuck and her two sons William and Thomas Cannynge my
nephews also to my two good friends Mr William ?Willes and Mr Andrew Burton
also to my friend Mr Jeffery Wilcox and my friend Mr James Watts of Ridlington
to every of these my friends I give a ring as before is expressed  Also to my brother
in law the Bishop of Gloucester I give Ten pounds to buy him a ring and to my
good friend Mrs Frances  Halford I give five pounds to buy her a ring  Also to my
Cousin Baptist Hicks the son of one of my  Executors hereafter named I give the
sum of Twenty pounds  Also I give and bequeath to all and every of the child or
children of my Cousin William Bartholomew that shall be living at the time of
my decease Twenty pounds apiece to be disposed of by the discretion of my Executors for their use and their father not to meddle with it all these legacies before mentioned I desire
may be paid within six months next after my decease or sooner if my money  can
be got in  Also to every of my godchildren that shall be living at the time of my decease
I give five pounds apiece and to my servant Cristean Carrington if she shall live with me at the
time of my death I give Ten pounds and also to William Forman my servant if he be my
servant at the time of my death I give five pounds and to Edmund Ongden my servant
if he live with me at the time of my death I give five pounds to be paid within Six
months after my decease if my money can be called in   Also to my old friends
Doctor Denham and Doctor Earshaw to either of them I give a ring  Also to Thomas
Wilmer of Brooke and Edward Hubbard of the same I give forty shillings apiece to the
Widow Hubbard the widow of Francis Hubbard I give twenty shillings to ?Robin
Hubbards family I give also twenty shillings Also to the widow  Wilmer I give
twenty shillings Also to goody Cugh and her family I give twenty shillings Also
to Thomas Rawle his family I give twenty shillings also to the widow ?Su... Crampe
I give twenty shillings also to Edward Dixon of Brooke I give forty shillings
Now my will and desire is that all the legacies given to my neighbours at Brooke
be paid the day of my burial if money may conveniently be had or as soon  after
as may be, also to the poor of the town of Chipping Campden and  Berrington
in the County of Gloucestershire I give Two hundred pounds and my will and desire is
that the interest of one of the said hundred pounds be given to the poor every
Sunday or Lord’s Day in bread according to the custom there at two shillings every
Sunday in the year and that to continue forever the other Hundred pounds I desire
should be added to the Town stock and disposed of according to the discretion of the
trustees already appointed for that purpose and their successors forever also I
give to the poor of the parish Moneyesend alias Moneyesging  (most likely to be Mountnessing )
in the county of Essex  where I was born and baptised the sum of fifty pounds to be made a
stock  for the poor of the said parish forever at the discretion of my Cousin
Mr Alexander  Prescott or whom he shall appoint also I give and bequeath
to the poor of the parish of Tarbeck alias Towerdebig (Tardebigge) in the county of Worcester
where I was sometime an inhabitant the sum of fifty pounds to be a stock
for the said poor according to the discretion of the right Honourable Thomas
Lord Windsor and whom he shall appoint forever also to the Town of Oakham
in the county of Rutland I give to the poor there fifty pounds to be added to the
town stock for the use of the said poor forever and also to the town of Uppingham
in the said County of Rutland I give and bequeath to the poor there the sum
of fifty pounds but my will and desire is that in regards Uppingham and Oakham
are market towns and so by consequence their poor numerous ?    I desire my
Executors that it may be so ordered that both the said market towns may receive
out of the before named  fifty pounds  twelve pence in bread every Sunday to be distributed
to the poor at the church as the custom is at Campden    Also to the poor of Brooke
I give and bequeath the sum of twenty pounds to be paid within Six months inst
after  my decease provided I do not in my life time give the said twenty pounds
or more to them   Also to the poor of Ilmington in the County of Warwick I give and bequeath the sum of twenty pounds to be disposed of for their use and benefit as
my cousin Cannynge of Foxcott and others the best of the parish shall think be fit
Item  I give to the poor of Alston Subege in the county of Gloucestershire the sum of twenty pounds according as the Vicar of Campden and the best of the parish shall
think  fit to dispose of it for their use   Also to the poor of the parish of Bretforten
in the county of Worcester I give and bequeath the sum of twenty pounds to be
disposed of according to the discretion of the Owner of the farm there late my uncle
Cannyngs the vicar of the Town and the best of the best of the parish shall see most
convenient also to the Eldest son of my cousin Robert Halford of Armscott in the
parish of Tredington in the county of Worcester I give the sum of twenty pounds
to be paid to him within six months next after my decease or else to give
him interest for the same after that time   Also to my friend Mr James Watts
minister of  Ridlington I give the sum of five pounds to buy him a ring to be
paid him within six months after my decease   Also to my brother in law Mr
Thomas Wilson parson of Arrow and to my cousin Mr Henry Hicks vicar
of Campden whom I constitute and appoint Executors of this my last will and
testament I give the sum of twenty pounds apiece    Also my will and desire
is that all the legacies herein bequeathed be paid within six months next after
my decease or as soon as my money can be called in   Also to my brother in law Mr
?.....    ?Rives I give the sum of Ten pounds to buy him a ring  Also my friend
 Mr Edward Seaman and to James Groocock to either of them I give a ring as before
is ordered of twenty shillings price   Also to Thomas Hubbard of Langham I give the sum
of twenty shillings   Also I give and bequeath to Richard Hack of Coldoverton the
sum of forty shillings to set up his trade provided I do not pay it to him in my
lifetime    Also I give to my Ms (master) The Right Honourable  Edward Lord Noel
one hundred guineas which I have now by me but with this proviso that if I
have not gold at the time of my death then one hundred pounds in silver  Also my
will and desire is that all the legacies  herein  bequeathed be paid within six
months next after my decease   Also my will is that if it should so fall out that
if I do not have in goods  bonds debts or ready money so much as will discharge
all the legacies herein  bequeathed then I charge both my Leases at Campden for
two years towards the payment of the same   Also my meaning is that if it should
please God that the lives in my farm there should die before there can  be so much
money raised  as shall satisfy all the legacies herein bequested then my will is not to
bring any debts or encumbrances  upon my Executors but that they pay them so far
as my money will go at their own discretion  in whose fidelities I repose  great
confidence in the performance of these my desires   Also my will and meaning is that all
the legacies that I have herein bequeathed whatsoever be paid before my Executors and
 after my Executors are paid their twenty pounds apiece then my will is that my
nephew William Cannynge shall have and enjoy my leases  at Campden  in as
full and ample manner as I myself did in my lifetime  Also my will is that
so soon as he shall be actually possessed of the said Leases he shall pay to
his younger brother Thomas Cannynge tenne pounds. In witness whereunto I have
sett my hand and seal this twenty fourth day of May Anno Domini one Thousand
Six hundred and eighty one ENDYMION CANNYNGE in the presence of James Watts
Edward Phillipps William Forman

APRIL the second one thousand six hundred and eighty three This memorandum that I
Endymion Cannynge of Brooke in the county of Rutland being in perfect memory
do make and annex this codicil to my last Will and Testament in manner and
 form following first of all I give to the Town of Castle Bytham in the county of
Lincolnshire Six pounds to buy them a Clock for the use of the Town provided there
be not ?clock belonging to that Church at the time of my decease  Also I give to the
poor of the said Town of Bytham ten pounds to be disposed amongst them for
their use and benefit according to the discretion and approbation of the Lord of the
Manor and the Overseers of the poor there   Also to the poor of the Town of
 Exton in the county of Rutland I give the sum of five pounds to be disposed of at the
discretion of the Earl of Gainsborough and the chief of the Townsmen there   Also
to the Town of Whitwell to the poor there I give five pounds to be disposed of at
the discretion of Sir Andrew Noel and the parson of that town for the time being
Also to the poor of the town of North Luffenham I give the sum of five
pounds to be disposed of as the Honourable Baptist Noel and the overseers
 of the poor there shall see fit   Also to the poor of the town of Ridlington
I give the sun of five pounds to be disposed of for their use as the Lord of the
Manor the parson of the town for the time being and the overseers of the poor shall
think be fit Also to the poor of the town of Belton I give the sum of five pounds
to be disposed of at the discretion of Mr Verney and the principle persons of the
town shall think fit  Also to the poor of the Town of Braunston I give the
sum of five pounds to be disposed of according as the parson of the Town the
overseers of the poor and the best of the town shall think fit   Also to the poor
of the Town of Langham I give the sum of five pounds to be disposed of
according as the Lord of the Manor the Overseers of the poor and the best of the
town shall think be fit   Also to the poor of the town of Halstead in the
county of Leicester I give the sum of five pounds to be disposed of at the
discretion of the Honourable John Noel  the overseers of the poor  there and
the best of the Town  In witness  hereunto I have sett my hand and seal the day
and year first above written ENDYMION CANNYNGE   Witnessed hereunto Jeoff(rey)
James Holmes William Forman

A Grimmer June 2012

Thursday, 30 October 2014

Essex Record Office announces digitisation of Wills pre-1720

Wills to 1720 Online at Essex Ancestors

The Essex Record Office has announced a major update of Wills digitised and available online through Essex Ancestors, its subscription site.  A further 22,500 wills have just been added to the 20,000 previously available to create a complete collection of those archived up to 1720.  Work is in progress to complete the run of Wills up to 1858, thus creating a database of 70,000 records.  For more information follow this link http://www.essexrecordofficeblog.co.uk/where-theres-a-will-major-update-to-essex-ancestors/ and to subscribe go to Essex Ancestors http://seax.essexcc.gov.uk/EssexAncestors.aspx .

Earlier this year I worked on transcriptions of Wills for Theydon Mount during the reign of King James I (1603-25).  Seeing the original documents at the ERO brings a sense of excitement in a way that sitting in the comfort of your home logged onto your laptop does not.  Digitisation widens accessibility to these archives which undeniably will be of enormous benefit to local, social and family historians alike.

Saturday, 25 October 2014

Blackmore: Baptisms at St Laurence Church

Revd Montagu Knott was Vicar of Blackmore from 1957 to 1985. These are two photographs, dating from the 1960s, of two baptisms. The people in the pictures are not recorded.

Sunday, 19 October 2014

Blackmore: Harvest Barn Dance - 1981

A photograph taken with Vicar, The Revd Montagu Knott, enjoying a church Barn Dance in 1981.
Harvest Supper & Barn Dance, 10 October 1981

Monday, 6 October 2014

Blackmore: Thomas Smyth born c.1605 Braintree

Received 1 October 2014

Hello Andrew-

I hope all is well there.  A quick question:  The Thomas Smyth who was born 1605 is listed as baptized in Braintree.  His brother Arthur was baptized later at Blackmore.  The way I understand the lineage is that the family was from Cressing Temple (Rivenhall area), with John having received that land in 1540 at the same time he received Blackmore Priory. We know that he and later his son Thomas lived at Smyth Hall.  I am trying to figure out in which church in Braintree Thomas (1605) was baptized.  I searched the available parishes listed under Braintree with no listings before 1700s.  Also I wonder who built Smyth Hall?  Maybe John? I assume Smyth Hall is in the area still considered Blackmore.

Of course any help or direction is appreciated.

Kind regards-
Scott Smith

Replied 6 October 2014

Dear Scott

Thank you for your e mail.

King Henry VIII decreed the keeping of registers of baptisms, marriages and burials in 1538.  Unfortunately not all parishes have records dating back that far.  St Michaels, Braintree begins in 1660, which suggests that the first volume has been lost.  Cressing survives from 1733.

Smyth Hall  was said to be built by John Smyth using material from the demolished Priory. Smyth Hall was in Blackmore about ½ mile south of the village.



Saturday, 4 October 2014

Blackmore: Church Decorated for Harvest Festival in the 1960s

Here are some photographs taken in the 1960s at the Priory Church of St Laurence, Blackmore showing it decorated for the Harvest Festival.

Tuesday, 30 September 2014

Blackmore: St Laurence Window Dedication

An 18th century stained glass window depicting the martyrdom of St Laurence has been restored and is now better displayed in the Priory Church of St Laurence, Blackmore.  The "window" was dedicated on Sunday 10 August 2014 (appropriately St Laurence Day, the patronal festival) and marks the 900th anniversary of the church.

Monday, 29 September 2014

High Country History Group: Theydon Mount: New Church Guide Now Available

High Country History Group: Theydon Mount: New Church Guide Now Available: To coincide with the 400th anniversary celebrations of the rededication in 1614 of St Michael's Church, Theydon Mount, a new colour ...

Doddinghurst: New Book to Mark Dedication of New War Memorial

A new book has just been published to mark the dedication of a new War Memorial outside All Saints Church in the village. The unveiling ceremony was held on Saturday 6 September 2014.  Both the book and the fund raising for the new memorial have been the work of local people forming the 'Doddinghurst War Memorial Committee'.  

The fallen of the First World War - ten soldiers - have already been commemorated, but those who died during the Second World War have not. They include five soldiers and five civilians.

Monday, 15 September 2014

Blackmore: Bull Planning Appeal Comprehensively Dismissed

A Planning Appeal against the decision made by Brentwood Borough Council has been comprehensively dismissed by the Inspector in Bristol.  On all counts the Inspector agreed with villagers that the building of two houses and a car barn, and alterations to the pub itself would be detrimental to the setting. For more read Judy Wood's blog entry: http://www.antique-teashop.co.uk/?tag=planning-appeal 

Thursday, 11 September 2014

The Diary of Montague Hardwick Knott, 1957 (33)

Wednesday 11.9.57

Sunday continued a happy day. There was a good number out in the evening – 40-50. Felt my recent sermons have been too much on the side of human failure & that I should now present more of the love & power of God.  Have tried faithfully to expound the appointed lessons & that has been the emphasis but shall try to make some change next week.  Popped into Shoreys for half an hour for an exchange of news.  H felt too tired to come.

Called on Ted Clack on way to the office on Monday. Ted gave me some photos of B’m taken from the air. We hope we may make up some calendars for Xmas using the photos. Business is rather slow.


Yesterday, I was busy with correspondence in am & in pm went to B’m. […]

I called on the Hartleys. Mrs H not at all well. The house is progressing but I guess it will be a month before we are in. Had tea w the Newsons & after, took my first banns parties in B’m. Then spoke at the Baptist C.E. Harvest Th’giving.

Had a nasty skid on way back in heavy rain. Skidded out of side land into main road. Luckily nothing was near or it could have been serious. Am grateful to God for my preservation. Was glad to get home.  This long drive is proving trying.

This am I went to St M E17 & took H.C. assisted by Andrew Bowman. It was like going home. Went on to coffee at Ch Hse. Saw the High twins, Derek Wood, John Robinson, Mrs Kemp, Mrs Dowling & a host of others. H & I are due there on Tuesday evening next for a little presentation. Called on Mrs Dru whom I promised to visit whilst still at St M’s was glad I did so. Felt I was able to help.

More work at my desk in the pm.

[Diary ends]

Monday, 8 September 2014

The Diary of Montague Hardwick Knott, 1957 (32)

Sunday 8.9.57


We followed our usual pattern this am. Left home for B’m at 8.20. Called at Ongar Hospital & found Mrs Jopson making excellent progress. Yesterday she walked a little.

Enjoyed the H.C. services at B’m & Paslow Common & the preaching. Found several letters awaiting me. One from Miss Mahoney’s half-sister. She wants to come & see me when we have moved in. Came back a different way between Paslow C & Chipping Ongar & found its countryside very pleasing. There was noticeably less traffic going to B’m this has been usual though the summer but there was more about as we returned.


Saturday, 6 September 2014

The Diary of Montague Hardwick Knott, 1957 (31)

Friday 6.9.57

Had  busy afternoon yesterday & spent most of the eve at 4 The Charter Rd., w Ada. She H & M were busy w wool-winding. I sat & did cheques for G H Co divs & int.


Friday, 5 September 2014

The Diary of Montague Hardwick Knott, 1957 (30)

Shield of the De Vere family
taken from the book
now in the church safe
Thursday 5.9.57

H brought my b’fast up yesterday am. Got up at 9.45 feeling better. […]

Was up at 6.40 this am feeling much more my old self.

H went to Town to change a blouse which proved too small & I to B’m. We were all together for lunch. Was interested to learn, when making my first call on the Brynes at the “Bull”, that Mr B has a book on the old church giving illustrations in colour of the 16 shields which are on the roof bosses. Mr B is a sick man & I fear losing ground. Both he & his wife seemed to appreciate my call. 

Wednesday, 3 September 2014

The Diary of Montague Hardwick Knott, 1957 (29)

Tuesday 3.9.57

I find it easy to let the days slip by & omit entries in this diary. […]

Saturday am A & I had a short business session & in the pm I went to B’m & worked in the Parish.  H was taken up with various jobs.

Sunday was a very happy day. The services were spiritually uplifting. We learned with regret that Mrs Marriage’s mother, Mrs Greenwood, had had a stroke on Thursday. She is at her son’s farm. We had Mr Legg, lay reader at St Stephen’s E17 to tea & took him to Paslow Common where he took the service. At the Parish Church we had our best congregation & the singing was good.

Yesterday I worked at my desk all am & H did washing. After an early lunch we took Ada & Miss Furness to B’m where we made calls and saw the builder. In the evening we called on the Vicar (KD) & Mrs Ayres & her sister Mrs Edmuns. Two choice Xians. […]

This am my old enemy was knocking at my door. […]

Am off to bed. Best place for me. […]

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

Theydon Mount: Church to Celebrate 400th Anniversary, 27 & 28 September 2014

CM16 7PP

Saturday 27th September, 7.30pm
Doors open 6.30

St Michael’s
Through the Ages

The story of St Michael’s Church from its earliest beginnings, its rebuilding in 1614, and its ups and downs from then until today will be told in a special evening presentation by Anne Padfield, the choir and friends.  The narrative will be interspersed with music and readings.

Ticket includes a glass of wine and refreshments

Tickets £10.00, from Anne Padfield

Programme for 400th Anniversary weekend

Saturday 27th September

11am-4pm ~ Exhibition in the church
Evening presentation ~ St Michael’s Through the Ages
Doors open 6.30pm, presentation begins 7.30pm

Sunday 28th September

10am ~ Celebration service with the Bishop of Chelmsford

For more details, contact Colin Flint (chigwell999@hotmail.com)
or Anne Padfield (anne@littletawney.co.uk)

Friday, 29 August 2014

The Diary of Montague Hardwick Knott, 1957 (28)

Thursday 29.8.57

We slept until 8o’c this am. H & I went to B’m & called at Ongar Hospital on the way. Mrs Jopson was pleased to see us but was in no great shape.

Things are still progressing at the house but it seems unlikely they’ll be ready by Sept 18th.  We called on May Jopson & George, the Simmons & Roy Horsnell. Then home to lunch.


Thursday, 28 August 2014


Today we mark the centenary of the death of Stoker Walter Brazier, age 28, remembered on the War Memorial at Blackmore, who was killed on 28 August 1914 in the Battle of Heligoland Bight.

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

The Diary of Montague Hardwick Knott, 1957 (27)

Tuesday 27.8.57

Am gradually mastering my enemy. It has just chimed 9pm & I propose going to bed when I written this diary up.

Yesterday I felt rough. Weather was much improved. The violent winds had dropped & at times it was most pleasant.

Took my car to Stewart & Arden for service & spent an hour in Ilford waiting for it. Walked round to Harrison & Gibson’s Furniture Store, a fine display.

After lunch & a rest I went to B’m & met the Archt’t & builder. Things are going forward spent a couple of hours there. Called on Mr Hartley on way home. He is most helpful – gave me names of lay-readers for Paslow C Services. They feel better for their holiday.


Wednesday 28.8.57


Monday, 25 August 2014

The Diary of Montague Hardwick Knott, 1957 (26)

Sunday 25.8.57

Feel much better but not back to normal. […]

Was off to B’m before 8.30. Called at Ongar Hosp & altho’ Matron thought Mrs Jopson was getting more use of her limbs, to me she seemed much worse.

We had a good morning service. Eighteen to H.C. After service called on Miss Huddleston, the Jopson’s, the Searle’s & Miss Thomas. Met Ruby Argent at the latter’s home.  Then home for lunch where I am awaiting it & feeling hungry.

It was a wild night & galey today. Twigs & boughs on all the country roads & I hear the rather poor fruit harvest is suffering badly. The ground is covered with windfalls. Mins has just come in so off we go for lunch. 

ESAH160: Great War: The Peoples' Story

ESAH160: Great War: The Peoples' Story: "WW1 through the eyes of ordinary people" is how ITV's Sunday docu-drama 'Great War: The Peoples' Story' is de...

Sunday, 24 August 2014

The Diary of Montague Hardwick Knott, 1957 (25)

Saturday 24.8.57

Am not feeling very bright. Since Wednesday have been troubled with a bout of my old complaint. […]

Wednesday, 20 August 2014

The Diary of Montague Hardwick Knott, 1957 (24)

Tuesday 20.8.57

[…] Worked at home until 10o’c & then went to the bank in Wdfd. The purchase money for 3 Firs Walk has come through so we have put £2000 on deposit. £1200 odd in the Abbey National & are leaving the rest on current a/c.

[…] Went to Branch the printers for some prints of St Laurence’s interior. Hope to have them by the week-end. Went to Mother’s & found Roy busy reconstructing the scullery. Looks as though he’ll make a good job of it.

Next to B’m where I found good progress at the house. Called on Sylvia Searle – a cripple of delightful character, on Mrs Jopson & the Hartleys. Nobody at home of the last named. Home for late tea after which a couple of letters before washing the car. 

Blackmore: Thomas Read Hull. Family Visit Grave.

Cleared grave of Thomas Read Hull
Previous hidden grave
(February 2014)
Received: 17 August 2014

I went today to Blackmore and cleared the grave a bit. I enclose a photo !
Thank you again for your research and direction, without which I wouldn't have found it.
I have, incidently sent a photo to Read Hull's new Gt. Gt. Gt. Grandson who may be interested when he is bigger.
Best wishes

Charlie Hull

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

The Diary of Montague Hardwick Knott, 1957 (23)

Monday 19.8.57

How quickly the time slips by. Saturday saw H busy about her business in the am and I at my desk. […] Marjorie Shorey has changed her car – another Ford “Prefect”. A 1956 model but looks good.

Sunday was encouraging. H came w me both am & eve. There were 17 out in the am & 15 took Communion. We called on Miss Thomas at Paslow Common & learned that it was her birthday. As Miss G was out & M had in invite for tea we were on our own & enjoyed it. H forgot her door key in the am & I had to get in thro’ kitchen window on our return from church.

There were about 35 out in the evening. […] Felt free & believe God blessed the preaching. […]

We were all together for supper. Miss G brought half a birthday cake of which we all partook.

Went to B’m first thing this am. Found the plumbers busy. Still looks doubtful if we will be in by the 18th Sept. Called on Miss Thomas & promised her the hymns & psalms in advance for Sept. Called also on Mr Wood, Miss Loker & Canon Gallop. The latter gave me the block of the pc interior of St Laurence’s Ch. I want to get some more pc’s printed. Saw Willie Emmett in the village. He has promised to speak to the other boys about joining the choir.

Was back for lunch & a busy pm at my desk. Dick Browning phoned asking me to take a Quiet Afternoon with his S. S. Teachers. Have promised to do so on 7th Sept. After tea continued at my desk & prepared an expenses statement for the Inspector of Taxes. 

Saturday, 16 August 2014

The Diary of Montague Hardwick Knott, 1957 (22)

Friday 16.8.57

Another day has sped its way. H feels an emotional strain living opposite her old home & seeing people go in & out. However she has been very courageous & I have admired her spirit in what must be trying circumstances for any house-wife let alone one of H’s age.

Whilst H stayed at home this am I went to B’m.  Called at Ongar Hosp to see Mrs Jopson. She is making good progress tho’ still seriously ill. She appreciated my call & the flowers I took were, she said, her favourites.

Found nobody working at the house.  Called on Miss Thomas re Paslow services, on the Simmons & the Woods. Anne S showed me her engagement ring. Roy Horsnell is her fiancĂ©. Was home for 1o’c lunch.

Had a good sleep this pm & then to work in my temporary study. After tea to work again & at 8o’c H & I walked round to Joyce Stunt’s where we stayed for an hour.

Tonight’s radio told of a man being charged at Woodford with the criminal assault & murder of a boy of seven on Saturday last. Poor child & poor murderer. What processes of filthy lust led him to such degradation & what remorse gnaws at his conscience now. 

Thursday, 14 August 2014

The Diary of Montague Hardwick Knott, 1957 (21)

Wednesday 14.8.57

These have been two very trying days for my little wife & they have been busy enough for me too.

Since Monday, we have been turning out, sorting, keeping & rejecting a hundred & one things.

I was on the go from 7am – 10.30pm yesterday with H almost as long. We moved over to Minnie’s & slept there. It rained on & off all day.

This am H & I were both over & No 3 by 7o’c. We hardly stopped for b’fast as the removal van turned up before 9am. It proved too small & so part of our f’ture had to be left behind. They were away by noon. It has been very wet today. Brightened up at tea-time.

I went to Brentwood. Was surprised to find that it is nearer here than is Blackmore by 2 – 3 miles. Arranged for the transfer of my Barclays A/c from W’fd. Called on the removal people & complained of its mismanagement of our removal & then went on to B’m.

Attended the W.I. Exhibition. Some very creditable entries. Found good progress in the house & picked up a letter in the church. Delivered some jumble to Church Hse, W’stow.

[…] Phoned KD & learned Sam Radley passed away this am. Learned at B’m that Mrs Jopson has been moved to hospital & has made some progress.

Thursday 15.8.57


Tuesday, 12 August 2014

The Diary of Montague Hardwick Knott, 1957 (20)

Monday 12.8.57

We both slept soundly. I turned out at 8o’c & went into H who couldn’t believe it was so late.

Took car into Stewart & Arden Ilford for service & returned home to take up upstairs & landing carpet. This pm collected car & went to B’m where I met Mr Insall, the architect. His assistant, Mr Scarff had been at the church all day & Mr I arrived at about 5o’c & I half an hour later.

Found good progress in the house.  Went along to the Jopson’s & found Mrs J is just the same.

Mr Scarff found the church most interesting & is making a report through Mr Insall. It will cost several thousands of pounds but one can see it could be made very lovely.

Got home at about 9.30 after bringing Mr Insall as far as Woodford Station. […]

Monday, 11 August 2014

The Diary of Montague Hardwick Knott, 1957 (19)

Sunday 11.8.57

H is v tired. Has stayed at home all day. I have missed her company. It will be a good thing when we are away from this house, with our furniture stored. I must try to get her away for a few days.

The day has been a joy to me. Took services at B’m & Paslow Common this am. Went into a Miss Tindall’s house for coffee after H.C. at Paslow C. Home for lunch at 1o’c.  This eve took Ev Pr at B’m. A nice number out. Felt free & had an attentive congregation.

[…] Found Mrs Jopson had had a stroke in Church at the close of the service. Tk her home & waited for the Dr a lady. She said there might be another. Will call tomorrow.

Was home about 9.30pm. H had gone to bed. Had supper & started reading Marcel’s book on infant baptism. 

Sunday, 10 August 2014

The Diary of Montague Hardwick Knott, 1957 (18)

Saturday 10.8.57

It hasn’t been such a happy day in some respects especially for my darling. I had been to B’m, taking Annette with me where I found continued progress w the Vicarage. Minnie & H were in the kitchen when I returned & when I spoke of the progress H was scornful & sceptical. […] I do not sufficiently remember that my dear one is twenty years older than I & that all the change & stress of present events are far more trying to one past seventy than to one past fifty.


Was busy in my study after 2hrs sleep this pm. Finished preparing sermons for tomorrow & planned services for tomorrow week. Called on Mother & Roy for half an hour this eve. Roy is rebuilding the scullery to make a kitchenette & seems to be doing well.

It was a year ago tomorrow that I had a slight stroke. Thinking back on that experience & the sense of impotence, the slurred speech & useless left arm & leg, I rejoice in God’s goodness & my wonderful recovery. I shall never forget the courage of dear H & all she did for me then. 

Saturday, 9 August 2014

The Diary of Montague Hardwick Knott, 1957 (17)

Friday 9.8.57

[…] Was home for tea & spent the evening at our preparations for the move. […]

Friday, 8 August 2014

The Diary of Montague Hardwick Knott, 1957 (16)

Thursday 8.8.57

Was astir by 7o’c.  We were sitting to b’fast by 8o’c. Hope to recommence my exercise tomorrow. As the Dr told me to keep from them for a week I have done so but have missed them.

It has been another day of sorting, clearing & packing. In destroying some old receipts I could not help noticing how some things are two or three times as costly now as they were when the war finished in 1945.

We had lunch at the Pantry & enjoyed it. This eve we drove to B’m & found more progress at the house. Also went with Miss Thomas to see the Mission Church at Paslow. Quite a nice little place. I have to get speakers booked for Sept.

We went on to the Marriage’s where a presculation was made to Canon Gallop. The worthy man was visibly touched by the affectionate regard of the parishioners. The Marriage’s are charming people with three lovely children, two boys and a girl. The boys have the looks that should be the girls.

I shared with Mr M some ideas for the Parish & promoting the work. He was interested & sounded co-operative. We came away feeling cheered. 

Thursday, 7 August 2014

The Diary of Montague Hardwick Knott, 1957 (15)

Wednesday 7.8.57

[…] We both have been sorting & packing in readiness for our removal. […]

Wednesday, 6 August 2014

The Diary of Montague Hardwick Knott, 1957 (14)

Tuesday 6.8.57

[…] Went to B’m after my rest & left H at home. Saw Smith the builder & went to his brother’s pig farm & slaughter house in the village. Visited Miss Huddleston, the Emmetts, one of the pubs & the Rumbold’s.


Tuesday, 5 August 2014

The Diary of Montague Hardwick Knott, 1957 (13)

Monday 5.8.57 Bank Holiday

This has been rather a lazy day. […] Drove out into the Essex countryside & relaxed & took our tea in a little by-lane. […] on our way home stopped to watch the planes at the airfield near Passingford Bridge. 

Monday, 4 August 2014


One word inscribed on the wall of the
Ongar War Memorial Medical Centre
Tuesday 4 August 1914
The moment when Britain entered the Great War

"The lamps are going out all over Europe, we shall not see them lit again in our life-time"

Lights Out
An hour when the nation remembers

Essex Record Office: First World War Resources

The Essex Record Office published on its blog a set of resources for those wishing to investigate further the Great War.  Follow this link for more: http://www.essexrecordofficeblog.co.uk/first-world-war-resources/

Navestock: War Memorial

The names of those on the War Memorial inside St Thomas' Church, Navestock are recorded here: http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=71872545

High Ongar: War Memorial

The names of those on the War Memorial outside St Mary’s Church, High Ongar, have not, to my knowledge, been published before online.  This transcription is produced 100 years to the day since Britain entered the Great War.

On the front face:

To our / glorious dead / 1914 – 1918
And below:
1939 -1945

On the south face is recorded:

Pte. J E Argent,  R. W. Kent Regt.  
Pte. S J Bush,  Essex Regt.  
Sergt. J Crane, D.S.M.,  R.M.Fus.  
Pte. H Clark,  Essex Regt.  
Pte. L W Cook,  Essex Regt. 
 Cpl. T A Donovan,  Norfolk Regt.  
Sergt. A F Donovan,  Norfolk Regt.  
Pte. J Farr,  Essex Regt. 
L.Cpl. P Fincham,  Essex Regt. 
Pte. S S Fogg,  Duke C.L.I. 
Pioneer G A Hall,  R.E.  
Bombor. W King,  R.F.A.  
Pte. E Maynard,  Linc. Regt.  
Pte. H Maynard,  R.W. Kent Regt.  
Pte. Wal. Maynard,  Essex Regt.  
Pte Wm. Maynard,  Lab. Corps.  
Pte Com Owers, M.C. Corps  
Seaman H C Pearce,  Royal Navy

The names of the fallen of the First World War continue on the north face of the Memorial thus:

Pte. F L Pennington,  Essex Regt.   
Pioneer H W Phillips,  R.E.  
Sig. F T Ruscoe,  Essex Regt.  
Sergt. T F Smith,  West Rifles   
Pte. T A Saunders,  R. Sussex Regt.  
Pte. F Saunders,  Essex Regt.  
Pte. C Savill,  Bedf. Regt.  
Pte. J Savill,  Bedf. Regt.  
Pte. C Shepherd,  Essex Regt.   
Pte.. H H Sitch,  R.A.S.C. 
Pte. T Tadgell,  R.A.S.C.  
Pte. A H Thomas,  V & L Regt.  
Pte. H Wood,  Midsx. Rgt.  
Pte. C W Wright,  Essex Regt.  
Pte. F C Witham,  Essex Regt. 
Sergt. R G Wood,  R.E.  
L Cpl. C W Wye,  W V Regt.

Those who died in the Second World War are commemorated on the base of the Memorial.  On the south face:

A.C.2. H Bentley,  R.A.F.  
F/O S T Byer,  R.A.F.  
Pte J J Guyher,  Suffolk Regt. 
Sapper S R King,  R.E.  of Norton Mandeville parish  
Fl.Sgt. W W Hopper,  R.A.F.  
Cnr. S C Neville  R.A.

Then on the north face:

Major A McCorquodale,  Coldstream Guards   
W/O R W C Phillips,  R.A.F. V.R.  
Pte. F Radaian,  P/C Q.O. Regt.  
Fl.Sgt. J Smyth,  R.A.F. 

Cpl. R L Wright,  Pioneer Corps