Monday, 29 June 2015
Sunday, 28 June 2015
A talk given by CFD Sperling: to an unknown audience probably in the early 1930s. The paper was found in the Society’s archives.
The name of de Vere is inseparably connected with the history of Hedingham Castle, for Aubrey de Vere, who came over with William the Conqueror, was rewarded for his service by a grant of manors in five different counties; amongst them, that of Hedingham. It had long been a place of importance, the hill overlooking the ford on the river Colne where the men of the Hundred were accustomed to meet, which must have been a stronghold in Saxon times or even earlier.
The first Aubrey de Vere, who came here, probably found a conical stockaded mound that had, up to that time, served well enough as a place of defence. He would seem to have levelled the crown of this and to have extended its area so that it found in effect a raised plateau. Probably he was content with a timber structure within a stockade and with his surrounding moat, he felt sufficiently secure.
On the south slope of the hill, before the date of the Domesday survey, he had planted a vineyard of six acres and wild vines remained there until the 18th century. His son, however, the second Aubrey, a trusted Minister of Henry I, not being satisfied with the timber structure, between the years 1130 and 1140, set up the great stone keep, which we still see, for except where parts have been torn out or broken down, the work remains in a surprising condition of perfection.
The surrounding buildings, the curtain wall, the gateway tower (which stood to the south of the keep), the great hall, the pantries, the Chapel and numerous lesser buildings which were grouped around the keep, are now represented only by a few foundations and grass grown mounds.
The ground plan of the great keep is not an exact square, the outside dimensions above the great bottering plinth being 58 feet (north to south) by 52 feet (east to west). The walls are about 11 feet thick, and it stands 85 feet high (without the battlements). It is built of stone from Barnack in Northants, but how the stone was brought here is a matter of conjecture.
This keep is among the finest and most complete examples of 12th Century Military Architecture in England. The condition of the tower is extraordinarily perfect. The walls and arched recesses still retain internally the original plastering.
Its severity of outline is noticeable. The only external ornament – with the exception of the great doorway which was obviously originally covered by a fore-building – is seen in the three upper tiers of the windows.
The basement was used partly as a kitchen and partly as a prison dungeon. There is a well in the south west angle inside, and another well outside, north of the tower.
The first floor, into which the great doorway opens, was used as a guard room.
On the second floor is the Audience Chamber or Armoury with gallery around it in the thickness of the wall. The great feature of this (and indeed of the Castle) is the magnificent semi-circular arch which spans it from west to east. The great span, 29 feet, and rise, 13½ feet, of the arch are the more marked because of the responds, or piers, being only 7 feet high. In fact, it is the creation of which any architect would be proud. The fire places, both here and on the floor below, are noticeable as unusually fine 12th century hearths.
All the floors have small chambers for sleeping places in the thickness of the walls.
The third floor was probably used as a dormitory.
A bridge of brick, c.1500, comes to the castle mound with the outer bailey, where now stands the fine house built by Robert Ashurst in 1719. All the foundations of the surrounding buildings which have been exposed show that they have been re-built late in the 15th Century, as Leland relates, after the Battle of Bosworth by the 13th Earl, who lived here in splendour, exercising a magnificent hospitality.
In the time of Aubrey de Vere, 1st Earl of Oxford, on 3rd May 1152, it was recorded that Queen Matilda, wife of King Stephen, died at Hedingham Castle and was taken for burial at Faversham Abbey, Kent.
The Castle is next heard of 1215 when it was captured from the rebellions Barons by King John, and, two years later, it held out against Louis, the Danfir, and was captured with difficulty. Whether the castle was surrendered owing to treachery or famine it was not stated.
John de Vere, 13th Earl of Oxford, was one of the chief supporters of the Lancastrian party in the War of the Roses and took a leading part in the Battle of Bosworth Field.
At the restoration of King Henry VI to the throne in 1470, he bore the King’s sword. He was afterwards held in great favour by King Henry VII who bestowed many honours upon him, for besides being Lord Great Chamberlain, he was created a Knight of the Garter, made Lord High Admiral and Constable of the Tower.
In 1491 he stood godfather to the King’s eldest son, afterward King Henry VIII. A few years later, in 1498, he entertained the King (Henry VII) at the Castle of Hedingham, with great magnificence, from 6th to 11th August, and on leaving, the King passed down from the Castle to the Village between a double row of the Earl’s Retainers, each wearing a blue livery with the Earl’s badge. These men far outnumbered the legal retinue of an Earl, viz 130 men, so when the King reached the end of the line, he paused and thanked the Earl for his entertainment, but added ‘I may not endure to have my laws broken in my sight. My Attorney must speak with you about it.’ This breach cost the Earl 15,000 Marks, a sum perhaps equal to £100,000 at the present day.
The amount of the fine seems incredible, but it rests on the authority of Francis Bacon, the historian of the reign of Henry VII, who relates the story as so reported in his day.
John de Vere, the 16th Earl, entertained Queen Elizabeth and her suite in the Castle August 14th to 19th 1561. He died the following year and was buried in Castle Hedingham Church, in the same tomb as his father, 31st August 1562.
But his son and successor, Edward de Vere, the 17th Earl, does not appear to have lived long in the Castle, so that at the end of the sixteenth century, it was unoccupied and partly dismantled through his caprice and extravagance.
He sold off the greater part of the de Vere estate, and quarrelled with his father in law Lord Burghley, who at last purchased the Castle and settled it on his daughter’s issue. This 17th Earl was a poet of merit, and we are now told, by some that he was the real author of the works of William Shakespeare.
It is accorded to Bakers’ Chronicle that the Castle buildings were further purposely ruined during the first Dutch War, in 1666, to prevent the use of them as a prison for the Dutch Sailors taken in the Sea engagements.
However that may be, from the Survey of the Estate made in 1592, it is evident that the dismantling of the buildings had even then commenced. Three towers that had stood around the keep are referred to as “now destroyed by Variant of the (17th) Earl,” and are noted on the plan as having “the lead, timber, iron and glass taken away.”
Some remains of the ornaments of the old Castle have survived. The interesting carved stone badges of the 13th Earl, which were noted by Rev William Tillotson, in 1594, as being over a door in the Castle, may now be seen over the west window of the Church. Whilst the carved stone panel representing the Battle of Bosworth, which was doubtless set up by the 13th Earl, one of the leaders of the Lancastrian forces, is to be found over the door to the Library of Stowe School, whither it was removed by the Duke of Buckingham.
The continuance of this family in the male line, and its possession of the Earldom for more than five and a half centuries, has made its name a household word. Its ownership of the Castle ceased in 1625, on the death of the 18th Earl without issue, but the title passed to a distant cousin, the 19th Earl, and on the death of his son (the 20th Earl) without a son in 1702, became extinct.
After some vicissitudes, the Castle Estate was eventually purchased in 1713 by Robert Ashurst, a son of Sir William Ashurst, Lord Mayor of London in 1693, and passed by marriage in 1783 to the family of the present owners.
When Mr Ashurst purchased the Estate, the Keep was but an empty shell, but he soon took steps to put it in a state of repair with new roofs and floors, and as it remained until the unfortunate fire in September 1918.
A wooden Observation Hut was built by the War Office on the top of the tower and this caught fire early in the morning of September 23rd. The fire soon spread to the tower roof, and there burnt its way down from floor to floor until the whole tower was gutted. The stonework, however, was in no way injured, and as no fire-engines were available until the fire had practically done its work, the masonry did not suffer, as in other cases, from the pouring of cold water on heated stonework, so that now the floors have been replaced and we can contemplate the architectural features of the great Keep with the same pleasure as before.
The Priories of Hatfield Broad Oak and Earls Colne were founded by Aubrey de Vere, and this Church of Earls Colne Priory was the burial place of many of the family, five of the recumbent effigies of the de Veres, removed from that Church, are now preserved in the little Chapel of St Stephen in the parish of Bures in Suffolk.
Two only of their tombs now remain in this county, viz: that of Robert de Vere, 3rd Earl, who died in 1221, in the Church of Hatfield Broad Oak, and, John de Vere, the 15th Earl and Elizabeth his wife, 1540, have an altar tomb in the Church at Castle Hedingham.
In the words of Lord Justice Crewe, in the time of Charles I, “Time hath his revolutions: there must be a period and an end to all temporal things, an end of names and dignities and whatsoever is terrene; and why not of de Vere? For where is Bohun? Where is Mowbray? Where is Mortimer? Nay what is more and more for all Where is Plantagenet? They are entombed in the urns and sepulchres of mortality. And yet let the name and dignity of de Vere stand so long as it pleaseth God.”
Monday, 22 June 2015
The Essex Society for Archaeology and History is a group of around 500 amateur and expert historians and archaeologists. Those who love the past heritage of the historic county of Essex. We are happy to receive queries and answer them if we can.
Can you tell me whether the M I's have been recorded for Gt Totham?
A member of the Society who lives in Great Totham advises me that "as far as the Monumental Inscriptions are concerned, I'm not aware Great Totham has been done recently, but there is a schedule and plan of the graves in the ERO (T/G 110/1-2).
Sunday, 21 June 2015
Gainsborough’s Countryside (S/LIB/9/8/1)
A talk given by CFD Sperling: to an unknown audience probably in the town of Sudbury, Suffolk, early 1930s. The paper was found in the Society’s archives.
The descent of Thomas Gainsborough from a worthy Sudbury family, engaged in the Cloth trade, is well known to all, and may be found, fully set out, in the various Bibliographies of the artist which have been published. But, today, I propose to consider his early environment, and to tell you something about this part of the Stour Valley in which he was nurtured and about the surrounding villages which were not without their influence upon him.
The country around Sudbury is eminently calculated to stimulate a love for landscape. The scenery of the Stour Valley could never fail to charm a mind formed by nature to feed on the beautiful. Thomas Gainsborough, indeed, never quitted England, but spent his infancy, and matured his artistic education, in this country, teeming with homely rural associations, and, amidst such unambitious scenery, he found congenial food for his mind and subjects for his pencil.
The river Stour was ever dear to him and fifty years residence in other parts of the country could not alienate his affections from the river of his boyhood.
This southern part of the county of Suffolk is today a district of rich in cornfields, winding lanes, and beautiful churches. It is difficult to believe that these country villages were once the centre of a thriving cloth-making industry. Four hundred years ago there was scarcely a village that had not something to do with the making of broad-cloth.
In the 11th and 12th centuries little woollen-cloth was woven in England for trade purposes, though no doubt in many a home, sufficient cloth was woven for the use of the household. To supply the demand for the finished material, English Wool was exported in the raw state to Flanders, where it was worked up into cloth and sent back to be worn in this country.
By the beginning of the thirteenth century, the cloth weaving industry grew until England became a great cloth-making country exporting cloth all over the world, and the time came when the clothiers were amongst the wealthiest men of the land, owning manors and houses, and gaining knighthoods and other high distinctions.
The manufacture of Woollen Cloth had its chief centre in the eastern counties, though it was more or less diffused through the length and breadth of the country.
As early as the beginning of the fourteenth century, it is recorded in the Ipswich Domesday Book, that a duty was there payable on export of the woollen cloth of “Coggeshall, Maldon, Colchester and Sudbury” from the port of Ipswich.
The weaving industry, in this corner of Suffolk, was of native growth and not affected to any great extent by immigration of Flemish weavers. There was indeed a rapid increase of the alien population in the 15th century, but the greater number were settled on the coast, and were occupied chiefly as brewers, coopers and shoemakers. In 1486 only five Flemings were entered in the Return as settled in the cloth-making district.
In the fifteenth century the development of this trade was the one bright feature in the economic history of the time.
Commercially and industrially the eastern countries were then in the vau: their ports gave access to the highway of commerce with the Dutch and the Low Countries, and it was indirectly due to this that they became the most thriving centres of the weaving and textile manufactures.
The flourishing state of the trade and the liberating of the wealthy clothiers led to the reconstruction on a larger scale of the greater number of the Parish Churches of this neighbourhood. Again and again brasses or ledger-slabs bear the wool merchant’s mark, and Chantry-chapels or Church-extensions sprang from their benefactors.
Country towns vied with one another in enlarging and beautifying their shrines of worship, and it is interesting to see how each endeavoured to outdo its neighbour’s lead. Sudbury was not minded to lag behind in its provision for worship, of which there is evidence in the three fine Churches standing in the town, each of them rebuilt or added to at the end of the fifteenth century.
Sudbury is the centre of this once flourishing manufacturing district: a district which included Lavenham, Lindsey, Kersey, Boxford and Hadleigh, on the Suffolk side, and Dedham, Colchester, Coggeshall, Braintree, Bocking, and Halstead, on the Essex side.
This district is throughout famous for its large Perpendicular Churches: the magnificent Church at Lavenham, six miles to the North of Sudbury, was practically rebuilt at the end of the 15th and beginning of the 16th centuries by the wealthy Spring family, cloth manufacturers of that place. The carved oak screen of the Spring Chapel in Lavenham Church is one of the gems of Suffolk art.
The fine Church of Long Melford, three miles away, was there rebuilt by the generosity of the Clopton and Martin families, and the contemporary stained glass, much of which still remains, is noteworthy. Stoke Church, with its lofty tower and fine brasses, and Nayland, with its painting of Constable, were reconstructed or enlarged at this period.
In this district, too, are the towns of Bildeaton and Hadleigh, which took their share in the production of woollen cloth; close by are the little villages of Lindsey and Kersey, famed for their association with the wool trade, which should alas be visited for their rural beauty. “Lindsey Woolsey, Carsey cloth, with Sudbury Says and Colchester Bays” were in use throughout the countryside.
Further down the river at Stratford St Mary the wealthy families of Smith, and Morse, Clothiers, have left their marks carved in stone or painted in glass, in the walls of the Church. At Dedham the Webbes and the Gurdons carried on a flourishing trade and contributed largely to the reconstruction of the Church.
Here too may be seen a late 15th century building of much interest, said to have been formerly the ‘Bay ad Say’ factory.
The beginning of the 16th century saw the Suffolk cloth trade at its height; slowly but gradually the demand for Suffolk Broad Cloth declined, and changing fashion led to the demand for “the New Draperies” made in London, Norwich and other places. In Sudbury, cloth continued to be made up to and after the time of Thomas Gainsborough. His father, John Gainsborough, we are told, introduced the manufacture of “burying crepe” into this town. A zealous government having hoped to revive the woollen trade by decreeing that woollen cloth should be the Englishmans Shroud. Arthur Young, the great agricultural writer, when travelling in the district in 1767, visited Sudbury and reported that it was a great manufacturing town wherein a great many hands earned a living “by working up the wool from the sheep’s back to weaving it into says and burying crepe, which are their principal articles. The whole manufactury works chiefly for the London markets, but some says go down the river (which is navigable from here to Manningtree) for exportation”.
It was in this neighbourhood, richly endowed with beauty, and studded throughout with the picturesque manor-houses and the humbler timber cottages of those engaged in the clothing trade, that Thomas Gainsborough was brought up, and passed the most impressionable years of his life.
Saturday, 20 June 2015
|The Old Chapel, Upminster, Essex|
Fifty years ago Upminster was transferred from Essex to the London Borough of Havering. Administratively the south west of the county is now in London, ruled by elected mayor Boris Johnson. Since then Southend and Thurrock have become Unitary authorities. However the Essex Society for Archaeology and History has, since 1852, covered the historic county of Essex and will continue to do so. It's when members talk about Kedington and Bartlow that things get more interesting.
Friday, 19 June 2015
Centre for Local and Regional History
Department of History, University of Essex
The Essex Local History Day 2015
Saturday 4 July 2015, 2.00 to 4.30pm
Senate Room (4.722), Psychology Department Building, Square One,
University of Essex, Colchester Campus, Wivenhoe Park, Colchester
'You earn your rest!' Women's work in Victorian Essex
Dr Amanda Wilkinson, University of Essex
Soldiers and Prostitution in a Garrison Town:
Dr Jane Pearson & Maria Rayner, University of Essex
Car parking is free.
The Senate Room will be signposted from the main visitors' car park.
There will be a short break for refreshments between the two papers.
For tickets please send details below:
Please send me ..... tickets for this year's Local History Day.
I enclose a cheque for £2 per ticket (payable to University of Essex)
Please enclose a stamped addressed envelope and send to:
Essex Local History Day, c/o Lisa Willis, Department of History, University of Essex, Wivenhoe Park, Colchester. CO4 3SQ.
Thursday, 18 June 2015
The parish of Newport lies in the valley of the River Cam in north-west Essex. It is about three and a half miles south west of the market town of Saffron Walden, and a short distance from the Hertfordshire and Cambridgeshire borders. It probably originated in the early 10th century as a royal foundation, and it early developed some urban features such as a market. Its position on an important through route between London and East Anglia gave it a more varied character than some of its neighbouring villages, and the coming of the railway in the 19th century led to the establishment of a gas works and maltings. Even so, it remained a largely agricultural community until the mid 20th century, but thereafter its position as a thoroughfare village tended to enhance its character as a dormitory village, with most of its adult population finding employment elsewhere, some in London.
This book explores the varying character of the village over eleven centuries. It looks at the pattern of landownership, the social structure and agricultural economy of the village, and its institutions, not least its 16th-century grammar school. It also discusses the part played, especially in the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries, by the owners of Shortgrove Hall, within the parish, and Quendon Hall, a few miles to the south.
The Victoria County History of Essex has already covered much of the south-western and eastern parts of the county, including those parishes which are now part of Greater London. This is VCH's first venture into north-west Essex, and it is the third in the VCH's series of parish histories ('shorts') designed to bring local research to publication as soon as possible.
To: Victoria County History of Essex Trust, Pentlow Hall, Pentlow, Essex. CO10 7SP.
Please send me ..... copy / copies of Newport at £15.00 (including postage and packing (UK only)).
Please make cheques payable to 'Victoria County of Essex Trust'.
Email / Telephone:
Wednesday, 17 June 2015
The Essex Place Names Project has, over the last 20 years, recorded the county in a unique way and posted the vast amount of data online. It is supported by the Essex Society for Archaeology and History through an annual grant. At the Society's AGM this map of the county was distributed showing that the majority of parishes have now been recorded. Parishes needing recorders are noted. These include Great Bardfield, Little Bardfield, Toppesfield, Earls Colne, Little Clacton, Witham, Hatfield Peverel, Rayleigh, Hawkwell, Rochford, Little Stambridge, Barking, Romford, Hornchurch, Rainham, West Thurrock, West Ham and Roxwell.
Tuesday, 16 June 2015
"Watch this space" could be have been the words to describe the setting of the Essex Society for Archaeology and History's Annual General Meeting last Saturday (13 June 2015). Members gathered in the newly extended Albert Sloman Library at the University of Essex for the first public meeting held there. In autumn 2015 the Society’s own library will relocate to this new dedicated space on the first floor. Members sat in the area to be fitted out as a Reading Room and saw the room behind glass panels which would house the collection of books amassed over the Society's 163 year history. It is considered to be one of the most important archaeological libraries in the region.
|Work nears completion on extended |
Albert Sloman Library (rear)
Following the AGM members were able to view the Society's Library in its current location.
Monday, 15 June 2015
John Ashdown-Hill, together with Philippa Langley, have been awarded the MBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours for their work on the discovery of the body of Richard III in a car park in Leicester. For more read: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-leicestershire-33121465
Sunday, 14 June 2015
The thrice yearly 24-page Newsletter has just been issued to Members and is full of interesting articles.
- From the Editor. Includes mention of the Medieval Lawyer occasional paper which all members should have received by post
- Our British Heritage. Discusses Essex's pre-Roman British names.
- The Landscape of the Dengie Peninsula
- Holland Haven Project
- Davy Down and North Stifford. Visit of ESAH. Item published on this blog
- Sea Coal
- Islands of the Blackwater
- Harlow Roman Temple Digitisation Project awarded £500 ESAH Grant
- Home Front Legacy 1914-1918 Project
- World War II Heritage Project
- The Society Archives: Parish Registers. Item published on this blog
- Digitisation Project The Society's work to digitise all of its previous publications and place online
- Tony Wilkinson, archaeologist. A tribute
- Book Review. The New English Landscape by Jason Orton and Ken Worpole. Item published on this blog
- ESAH Archives Open Days. 3 October & 7 November 2015. Item published on this blog.
Saturday, 13 June 2015
The friends of Alderford Mill operate a watermill at Sible Hedingham, which is owned by Essex County Council. It will open on the following days from 2pm to 5pm.
Sunday 14 June - Milling Day
Sunday 12 July - Children's Day to include finding objects around the mill identified in photographs.
Sunday 9 August - Milling Day and Tea on the Lawn at Searles. Searles is opposite the Mill and was formerly the Miller's house then known as the Mill House.
Sunday 13 September - Open Day.
You are invited to visit this historic watermill on the banks of the River Colne, dating from the 18th century. Refreshments will be served and admission is free. Donations welcome. Free parking.
Taken from the Essex Society for Archaeology and History Newsletter 174, Spring 2015
Monday, 8 June 2015
Issued twice a year to subscribers for just £10, the Essex Journal has now achieved its fiftieth volume. Contents in the Spring 2015 edition include:
Contents of Essex Journal, Vol. 50, I (2015)
The Medieval Estates of St Bartholomew’s Hospital, London,
The Marconi legacy: assessing the heritage of the wireless communication industry in Essex,
Tim Wander & Tony Crosby
Tilbury Docks in the Great War: the Dutch & Belgian Connection,
‘A Fantastical will’: Ongar castle and the Mitford mausoleum,
The Great War Hospitals of Southend,
Anglo-Saxon England in 100 Places
The Brickmaker’s Tale
George P. Raven,
Swimming against the Tide: The Diary of an Essex Copper 1953-198,
A.J. Carson (editor) et al
Finding Richard III: The Official Account of Research by the Retrieval and Reburial Project
Pam & Adrian Corder-Birch,
The Works: A History of Rippers Joinery Manufacturers of Castle and Sible Hedingham
The Colne: by Boat Bike and Boot
Ron Bill, A Civic History of Harlow Council, 1955-1985
EJ 20 Questions?
For more information, and to subscribe visit the Essex Journal website.
The Essex Journal is supported non financially by the Essex Society for Archaeology and History.
Thursday, 4 June 2015
Essex Society for Archaeology and History. Annual General Meeting to be held Saturday 13 June 2015, 2pm, at University of Essex
ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
NOTICE is given that the Annual General Meeting of the Society will be held to 2.00pm on Saturday 13 June 2015 at the Albert Sloman Library, University of Essex.
1) Apologies for absence
2) Minutes of the 2014 Annual General Meeting (to be tabled)
3) Matters arising
4) Annual Report for 2014
5) Accounts & Balance Sheet (full accounts to be tabled; a summary is enclosed)
6) To vote on the proposition that the amended constitution being presented to this AGM 2015 be adopted
7) Election of Examiner of Accounts; Mr P Evans has been proposed.
8) The Publication & Research Fund
9) The Essex Place-names Project
10) The Industrial Archaeology Group
11) Election of President
12) Election of Vice-Presidents; Mr D Buckley, Mr S Newens, Mr A B Phillips, Dr J. Ward, Dr M Leach have been proposed.
13) Election of the six members of Council of Management in accordance with Clause D.1 c of the new constitution. The following have been proposed Mr H M Stutchfield, Dr C C Thornton, Mr G M Davies. Further nominations will be announced at the AGM
14) Election of the ex-officio members of Council of Management
15) Election of the Curator; Mr P Wise has been proposed
16) Any other business
After the meeting there will be an opportunity to visit the Library and a tea will be available, price £5. Please book in the usual way for instructions and a location map. Copies of the 2014 AGM minutes, and the full accounts and balance sheet, can be obtained in advance from the Hon. Secretary, 26 Mountview Crescent, St. Lawrence, Southminster, CM0 7NT. (email: email@example.com)
The following ex-officio members are proposed by the Council for election to the Council of Management: President Mr A. Corder-Birch
Secretary Mr J Hayward
Treasurer Mr W M Abbott
EIAG Chairman Mr A Crosby
The other officers for the Society are as follows
Deputy Editor Miss H Walker
Librarian Dr J Pearson
Deputy Librarian Mr A Smith
Membership Secretary Mrs T Hunter
Programme Secretary Mr P Sainsbury
Excursion Secretary Dr G Gould
P & R Fund Secretary Dr C Thornton
The new Council will co-opt some of these officers onto the Council of Management.
Wednesday, 3 June 2015
Proving that this blog is useful to those interested in the history of Essex, Eleanor Styles, Graduate Project Manager of The National Trust has been in contact with the Essex Society for Archaeology and History.
Bourne Mill (NT) in Colchester has an ongoing Heritage Lottery Funded project (a little info on the project here https://eastofenglandnt.wordpress.com/2014/12/12/essex-university-help-to-bring-the-history-of-bourne-mill-to-life/), a major part of which is looking at creating new displays and interpretation for the Mill, particularly highlighting its links to Colchester’s textile trade. I have a copy of The Last Days of Bay-making in Colchester by Henry Laver from Transactions n.s. Volume 10 Part 1 (http://esah160.blogspot.co.uk/2013/05/the-last-days-of-bay-making-in.html) which contains an great collection of memories with workers in the fulling and bay trade including that of Charles Baker who worked at Bourne.
The Society is delighted to grant permission to use extracts of Henry Laver's account in the Trust's new interpretation,