An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in Essex, Volume 1, North West. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1916.
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21. ELMDON. (A.b.).
(O.S. 6 in. (a)ii. S.W. (b)viii. N.W. (c)viii. S.W.)
Elmdon is a parish and village about 5 m. W. of Saffron Walden.
b (1). Parish Church of St. Nicolas stands at the cross-roads in the village. The West Tower is of the 15th century. The rest of the church was rebuilt in 1852 and 1879, possibly on the old foundations. The walls are of flint rubble with dressings of clunch, limestone and shelly oolite.
Architectural Description—The West Tower (13½ ft. by 12 ft.) is of the 15th century, much restored, and of three stages with a moulded plinth, diagonal buttresses and a N.W. stair-turret; the embattled parapet is modern; below it are four original gargoyles. The tower-arch is also modern. The W. window of three lights is externally modern, but internally original, and the W. doorway below it is also modern externally with the original internal splays and rear arch. In the second stage the W. and S. walls have each a window, both apparently modern. The bell-chamber has, in each wall, a window of two lights, externally modern, but internally they are perhaps partly original.
Fittings—Bells: six; 3rd by Richard Keene, 1700. Brasses and Indents: In chancel—(1) of civilian and two wives, c. 1530, man's figure in fur-lined cloak with hanging sleeves, women with flat caps, groups of children, marginal inscription with Evangelistic symbols, indent of inscription plate; (2) to Thomas Crawley, 1559, four inscription plates, groups of four sons and eight daughters, indents of two figures. Chairs: In chancel—two, of oak, without arms, simply ornamented, plain seats, early 17th-century. Chest: In vestry— iron-bound, 17th-century. Font: modern, except octagonal stop-chamfered base, c. 1400. Monument: In chancel—against N. wall, to Thomas Meade, "secundo justiciaio de banco," 1585, altar tomb of marble, sides with cusped panels having shields of arms, plain slab with marginal inscription, above it a cusped panelled canopy, with Tudor flower cresting and panelled soffit, on panelled flankingpieces, with shields of arms and crests, same arms and crest repeated at the back, and same shield on canopy. Piscina: In S. chapel—re-set and restored, with cinquefoiled head and modern basin, 15th-century. Plate: includes standing paten of 1633, dated 1634, and cup of 1634.
a (2). Fortified Mount, in Castle Grove, ¼ m. N.N.W. of the church, is 165 feet in diameter at the base, and has a strong rampart round the top and a dry ditch round the base.
Condition—Good; thickly planted.
a (3). Site of Dagworth Manor House, 500 yards N.W. of the church.
b (4). N.W. of the inn and 400 yards S. of the church, traces only.
b (5). Piggott's Farm, house and moat, 550 yards S. of the church. The House, now two tenements, is of two storeys, timber-framed and plastered; the roofs are tiled. It was built early in the 16th century, the roofs forming two crosswings at the N. and S. ends. A wing was added on the E. side c. 1665. At each end of the W. front the upper storey projects and is gabled. The end wall of the E. wing is of brick, and has three circular windows and a projecting chimney-stack which bears the date and initials 1665 T.M., and has three diagonal shafts on a moulded base. The central chimney-stack has some old bricks at the base. Inside the building, on the ground floor the rooms have old ceiling-beams, that in the E. room rests on shaped wall-posts with carved and moulded heads. A panelled door is of the 17th century. On the first floor is an original fireplace with a four-centred head, now blocked. The roofs of the two cross-wings are of king-post type.
The Moat is complete.
b (6). House, 60 yards S.E. of the church, is of two storeys with attics; the walls are timberframed and plastered; the roofs are tiled. It was built c. 1600, on an L-shaped plan with the wings extending towards the N. and E. A second wing was added on the E. in the 18th century. At each end of the W. front the upper storey projects and is gabled; the gables have original barge-boards, one being moulded; the plaster retains some original ornament, including a rough cartouche and a band of arabesques; under a window at the S. end, is an original roughly moulded sill. Inside the building, the ground floor has chamfered ceiling-beams, and at the top of the staircase is a plain rail with shaped balusters. The roofs have heavy cambered tie-beams.
(7). House, about 100 yards S.E. of the church, is of two storeys, timber-framed and plastered; the roofs are tiled. It was built c. 1625, and has a modern addition on the S. On the N. front the upper storey projects on rough brackets, and has a moulded and dentilled bressumer; above it is a band of ornamental plaster; the projecting porch has a gable with moulded and dentilled barge-boards; the doorway has an original moulded frame, and moulded and panelled door. At each end of the building the gables have bargeboards similar to those of the porch. Inside the building, on the ground floor, the rooms have chamfered ceiling-beams; the E. room has an original fireplace with chamfered jambs and four-centred head; the overmantel is simply panelled, and the walls are covered with original panelling, in which there is a cupboard with pierced pilasters.
The following monuments, unless otherwise described, are of the 17th century, and of two storeys, timber-framed and plastered; the roofs are tiled or thatched. Some of the buildings have original chimney-stacks, wide fireplaces, and exposed ceiling-beams.
Condition—Good or fairly good, unless noted.
b (8). House, now two tenements, 50 yards W. of the church, was built c. 1600, and has modern additions on the N. side. On the S. front the upper storey projects. The original central chimney-stack has three square attached shafts. Inside the building, the ground floor has moulded ceilingbeams.
b (9). Cottage, two tenements, on the N. side of the Heydon Road, 170 yards W. of the church, is of T-shaped plan with the cross-wing at the S. end. There is a modern addition on the W. side. At the E. end of the cross-wing the upper storey projects.
Main Street, W. side
b (10). House with shop, 100 yards S.W. of the church, was built probably c. 1600, and there are modern additions at the back. In front the upper storey projects.
b (11). King's Cottage, 300 yards S. of (10), has an 18th-century addition at the W. end. At the E. end of the S. front the upper storey projects and is gabled.
b (12). Cottage, 100 yards S.E. of (11).
b (13). Cottage, two tenements, E. of (12).
b (14). Cottage, about 300 yards S. of the church, was built probably in the 15th century, and has an 18th-century addition at the back. A blocked window, apparently of three lights, originally unglazed, and the remains of a truss in the roof, suggest the former existence of an open Hall.
b (15). The Bangles, house, now four tenements, 140 yards N. of (14), was built late in the 16th century on a half H-shaped plan with the wings extending towards the E. The space between the wings was filled in probably in the 18th century. The W. front has a gable at each end, and under the S. gable the upper storey projects; the N. gable has original dentilled bargeboards. The N.E. wing is also gabled and has original barge-boards. The original chimney-stack at the S. end has an elaborately 'crow-stepped' base and two linked hexagonal shafts. Inside the building, one original window with diagonal mullions, now blocked, is visible in the E. wall of the main block.
Quickset Road, S. side
b (16). Cottage, 320 yards E.N.E. of the church.
b (17). Cottage, 90 yards E.N.E. of (16).
a (18). Cottage, 90 yards E.N.E. of (17), is of late 17th or early 18th-century date.
b (19). Cottage, two tenements, N. of Bridge Green, and about 1½ m. S. of the church. The walls are partly weather-boarded.
b (20). Cottage, two tenements, at Upper Pond Street, about 1½ m. S.S.W. of the church. The original central chimney-stack has diagonal pilasters.
b (21). Cottage, three tenements, E. of Duddenhoe End, and nearly 2 m. S. of the church.
b (22). Cottage, two tenements, W. of Rockells Farm, and nearly 2 m. S. by E. of the church.
c (23). House, at Cooper's End, about 2½ m. S. of the church, was built c. 1700, and has an 18th-century addition at the S. end.
b (24). Moated Mound, possibly site of windmill, 650 yards S.E. of the church.