An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in Essex, Volume 2, Central and South west. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1921.
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55. LITTLE LAVER. (D.b.)
(O.S. 6 in. xlii. S.W.)
Little Laver is a small parish 4½ m. N. of Chipping Ongar.
(1). Parish Church of St Mary stands in the centre of the parish. The walls are of flint-rubble with some pieces of freestone and dressings mostly of clunch; the roofs are tiled. The Chancel and Nave were built possibly in the 14th century on a plain rectangular plan, but in 1872 they were largely re-built, and the apse, North Vestry and South Porch added.
The late 12th or early 13th-century font is of interest.
Architectural Description—The Chancel (11 ft. by 18½ ft.) is modern in all details and has modern apse and chancel-arches.
The Nave (36½ ft. by 18½ ft.) has in the N. wall two windows: the eastern is a much restored 14th-century trefoiled light, the western is modern; E. of the eastern window is a modern doorway opening into the vestry. In the S. wall are two windows: the eastern is modern, the western is probably of the 14th century, much restored, and has a trefoiled head, moulded jambs, segmental-pointed rear-arch, and a label with head-stops; W. of these windows is the S. doorway, probably entirely modern. The W. wall is entirely modern.
The Roof of the nave has braced collar-beams and three rough tie-beams of uncertain date. The bell-cote is modern.
Fittings—Bell: one, by Anthony Bartlet, 1674. Chair: made up partly of the sounding-board from an early 17th-century pulpit, and has an elaborately panelled and carved back, double-arched front with scalloped edge and acorn pendant. Font: (Plate p. xxxii) bowl of square plan with sloping sides carved with foliage, fleur-de-lis, crescent, disc, stars and whorl, etc., probably late 12th or early 13th-century, stem and base modern. Piscina: In N. wall of apse—with moulded jambs and trefoiled head, no drain, probably 14th-century, re-set. Plate: (Plate p. xxxix) includes bowl of a cup, of 1562, with gilded band of foliage-ornament; a paten, undated, of which the foot is possibly that of the above bowl; a cup with bowl of 1563 and trumpet stem and curiously scalloped collar, both probably 17th-century.
Condition—Good, largely re-built.
(1a). At Rectory, nearly ½ m. S.S.W. of the church.
(2). At Church Farm, ½ m. S.W. of the church.
(3). At Envilles, 800 yards E.S.E. of the church.
(4). Manor House, E. of the church, is of two storeys, timber-framed and plastered; the roofs are tiled. It is a rectangular fragment of a house built probably in the second half of the 16th century, and has a modern addition at the W. end. The central chimney-stack is original. Inside the building is an original moulded ceiling-beam.
Condition—Good, much altered.
(5). Gosling Hall, 250 yards S. of the church, is of two storeys, timber-framed and plastered; the roofs are tiled. It was built probably in the 16th century on an L-shaped plan with the wings extending towards the S. and W. At the N. end of the E. front the upper storey projects on curved brackets and is gabled. The S. chimney-stack is original. Inside the building are curved tiebeams.
(6). Little Laver Mill, house, 700 yards S.S.W. of the church, is of two storeys, timber-framed and plastered; the roofs are tiled. It was built in the 17th century on a T-shaped plan with the cross-wing at the E. end.