Hatfield Peverel in old picture postcards volume 1

Hatfield Peverel in old picture postcards volume 1

Author
:   Joyce P. Fitch
Municipality
:  
Province
:   Essex
Country
:   United Kingdom
ISBN13
:   978-90-288-6141-1
Pages
:   80
Price
:   EUR 16.95 Including VAT *

Delivery time: 2-3 weeks (subject too). The illustrated cover may differ.

   


Fragments from the book 'Hatfield Peverel in old picture postcards volume 1'

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49 Still around 1905, and from outside the Parish Room, Spalding shows us a further peaceful scene looking toward the Wheatsheaf corner. On the left are the Lovibond almshouses or Monied Housen, founded in 1820 by Manha Lovibond. Next is the Old School, built in 1851. lts large window, still paned with glass and part of the master's house, overlooks the boys' yard. No doubt this window took the full force of balls and stones kicked up from the rough surf ace of the yard for it was later blocked in. An elm grows inside the school gate, an aak in the corner of the yard and a second oak, still surviving, grows in an almshouse garden. The dis-

tant house is Ann Cottage, one of a terrace of three dating back to the 1600s, with Mr. Drury, possibly the parish letter writer, living next door at Grange Cottage around 1850. Shrubbery stretches

back to the Parish Room, intersected only by Church Raad.

50 Armed with an awesome array of gardening implements, this group of young lads pose, in 1919, in the boys' yard with Mr. Arthur Bennett, a respected headmaster. Nicknamed 'Billy' by the boys, he is seated centre on a wheelbarrow; surrounded by boys bearing spades, forks, hoes, rakes, a pickaxe, a bagging hook and a bucket. Gardening formed an important part of their education, this plot ofland becoming, later, the site of the canteen. The school held an allotment behind Brewery House on the Green (see No. 66) and when Mr. Bennett moved to White Hart Cottage (see No. 4-5) the boys dug the garden. All these boys are known but space

permits naming only one: fifth from right is George Sadler. In the background stand Redlynch Cottages, the further, 15th century wooden dwellings, since demolished; the later, briek-built ones

since restored. Beyond the washing strung out on the line are the chimneys of the Old Vicarage.

51 On a sleepy surnmer's aftemaan in 1907 the Old School basks in warm sunshine, Maldon Raad lies empty, save for a solitary pedestrian and a wagonette pulled up against the hedge opposite the almshouses. The school, built in 1 85 1 to accommodate two hundred children, and with walls 14 inches thick, was several times enlarged. In the little tower at the front hangs the bell that called the children to their

les sans. Railings, and a long wooden fence which stretches from the brick pillar in front of the building to the extreme right, mark off the playground from the pavement. A small gate in the fence seems unused as the

sprouting grass is untrodden, Few will remember the tall elm tree that grew outside the boys' porch and today only the railings remain as evidence ofthis much-loved old building. It was demolished

in 1991 and is now a Shaftesbury housing complex suitably named Old School Court.

li Hall, i'hoto, Witham

52 Still in 1907 we now make a diversion to wend our way along Chureh Raad. There are na footpaths sa we stand in the road to look back at the Old School. On the left is the Master's house with its ivy-covered walls and, almast hidden from sight on the right is the high, painted window of the classroom seen beneath the bell tower in the preeeding eard. In 1923 Mr. Sidney Hiscoek suceeeded Mr. Bennett and Miss Lucy Croxall became his assistant. On either side of us extends the leafy growth which has always been known in the village as the 'Shrub'. It was indeed, just that, and was once part of comman land which stretched from the Green to

the Street. Taday, on the right, the house called Kissingate stands at the road junction with Maldan Raad, while on the larger portion of shrubland ta the left stands a small hausing estate, The Spinney,

built around 1967. Here, beside a pond, there once grew violets, celandines and primroses.

53 Time has moved on to around 1930, but we rernain at the spot seen in the last card, merely turning our heads to look right. For generations of children the 'Shrub', where hornbeams bordered the raad, provided an exciting out-af-school playground. Hide-and-seek and kiss-and-tell (or not to tell!) were played here, while many an illicit Woodbine was puffed behind a tree. Warm summer days would aften find pupils and teacher engaged here in lessons: reading, needlewark or physical training. On one occasion the shrubs provided shelter for a truant as he lay in ambush for the headmaster - the miscreant was caught and severe-

ly caned. Thraugh the trees, and beyond a little cut, we see the white walls ofShrub Cottage on the right and Peverel Cottage on the left, while the solid chimney of one of three ancient houses can be seen

further left. For many years the Scouts and Guides had their headquarters in a hut in this clearing in the 'Shrub'.

54 Ta capture a weil-proportioned photograph of St. Andrew's Priory Church is not easy for it lacks its tower and transepts, burned down in 1 23 1 , and has had aisles added. Here, around 1906, Fred Spalding found what is probably the best viewpoint. The cross on the roof above the rounded Norman arch marks the east of the present church and the west end of the former tower. In 1875, extensive repairs dosed the church for worship and on 30th May the vicar wrote in the register: ... a stone coffin was found with bones of a man and a woman at the foot of the wall between the window containing the effigy of Ingelrica and the last window to the east. .. A legend runs that the

devil said he would have Ingelnca's soul whether she be buried inside or outside the church, sa within the walls themselves may have provided a solution. In 1923, Mr. Alfred }. Steek alocal

man, published a cernprehensive history of the earlier priory and the church.

SS At the far eastern end is the rounded Norman arch which, bef are a disastrous fire in 1 23 1 , was part of the west end of the square tower. On either side of this arch, now above the altar, can be seen the illuminated texts so beloved by the Victoriaris and filling the space above is an illustration of the Lord, surrounded by angels. The wall is now bare. To the left is the north aisle, the three complete arches dating back to about 1280, while in the space above the column joining the further two arches is a splayed Norman window of around 1080-1100. It formed part of the original exterior wall and, being narrow on the outside and wider on the

inside, it kept out rain and cold while letting in maximum light. On the furthermost window sill lies the effigy mentioned in the last card and supposed to be Ingelrica. Through the arches on the

right is the south aisle, once part of the priory. The church is Iit by lamps and candles.

56 Of the several postcard views of Hatfield Priorv, including those taken by Spalding, perhaps this one published by F. Baker around 1920 most pleases the eye. It is of the west side of the house, which from 1768 untill928 was owned by [ohn Wright and his descendants. Here a herd of black and white Frieslans peacefully graze within the grounds. In February 1898 Christopher W Parker, D.L., JP., then resident here, penned a letter to Edward Fiteh, an Essex County Councillor. Addressed from Hatfield Priory, Witham, he wrote: ... I came home yesterday after riding a bicycle from Shen-

field to Ongar und then to CheJmsford grumbling much ... Between Kelvedon Hatch and Ongar, then Ongar to Norton Heath he found the road to be in a very bad state and in need of attention. He concludes: .. .I

should say L. Marfiage has been carting grain all the winter end there is cr great cause of the mischief.

57 Retracing our steps from the private drive of the Priory, we pass the Church on our right to arrive in front of the four brick pillars which mark the entrance to bath buildings. The most striking feature of this view is the wealth of trees. From this spot and back to the Shrubbery, Church Raad was overhung on either side by a canopy ofhorse chestnuts. Ta the right stands Priory Lodge, very old and once the vicarage, being partly destroyed by fire in 1916. Today the drive has been widened and two gates have disappeared. Surprisingly perhaps, it appears that the wheels of cars have rutted the gravel drive more than those of the horse-drawn carriages

of yesteryear. Ta our left lies Priory Park, into which, in the First World War a Zeppelin in distress jettisoned its tools, quickly seized upon by villagers watehing its slow progression overhead. Once outside

the gates we turn left and continue along Church Raad.

58 A lens reveals Sliepherd's Cottage beyond the distant figure and pinpoints this 10cation in Church Road. In a summer scene of around 1930 the picrure's charm lies in the dappled shadows cast by a profusion of trees, making Church Road a popular place for a gentle Sunday strall. Unpaved, and bordered by sheep's parsley, wild flowers spring from the grass grawing lush on either side. Ta our right is the field known as Willermer Downs where, in the 1890s, Mr. Iohn Upson, farmer, onee feneedin overnight about thirty donkeys. The loeal children seized the opportunity to ride them barebaek round the field! Here there grew several

horse ehestnuts and, in autumn, the ehildren would throw up eudgels to bring down the shiny, ripe eonkers. A pateh of parsley marks the ehurch end of the long eurve ofWillow Creseent whieh

emerges opposite Shepherd's Cottage. Land to the left of the raad belongs to the Priory.

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