An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in Essex, Volume 3, North East. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1922.
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44. HEYBRIDGE. (B.e.)
(O.S. 6 in. (a)liv. N.W. (b)liv. N.E.)
Heybridge is a parish and village on the N. side of the Blackwater, opposite Maldon. The church is interesting.
a(1). Parish Church of St. Andrew stands in the village. The walls are of flint-rubble, boulder-clay and pudding-stone with dressings of limestone and clunch; the roofs are tiled. The Chancel and Nave were built early in the 12th century and later in the same century the West Tower was added. In the 15th century the chancel was lengthened towards the E. and a clearstorey to the nave was begun but probably never completed. At some uncertain date the upper part of the tower was destroyed. The South Porch is modern.
The church is an interesting example of 12th-century work.
Architectural Description—The Chancel (29 ft. by 24 ft. average) is structurally undivided from the nave. The 15th-century E. window is much restored and of five cinquefoiled lights with vertical tracery in a two-centred head. In the N. wall is a 15th-century window of two cinquefoiled lights in a square head with a moulded label; there was a second similar window at the E. end of the wall now blocked by a monument but visible externally; above the still existing window is the round external head of a 12th-century window with plastered splays and rear-arch. In the S. wall are two 15th-century windows similar to that in the N. wall but much restored; above the western window is the head of a 12th-century window similar to that in the N. wall but only visible internally; between the windows is a doorway with modern jambs and a 15th-century two-centred arch; the thicker wall W. of this doorway indicates the junction of the 12th and 15th-century work; between the doorway and the western window is an early 12th-century doorway, now blocked and with plain jambs, round arch and hollow-chamfered imposts, cut back on the face.
The Nave (42 ft. by 23 ft.) has in the N. wall three windows, the easternmost is of two plain pointed lights under a three-centred head and is probably 16th or 17th-century work partly restored; it is set in a recess containing the rood-loft staircase; the two western windows are of early 12th-century date and each of one round-headed light; the western is much restored externally; between these windows is the N. doorway of the same date and with plain jambs and round arch enclosing a diapered tympanum with a segmental arch springing from roll-moulded imposts. The S. wall has two 15th-century windows each of three cinquefoiled lights with tracery in a square head almost completely restored externally except for the label and defaced stops of the western window; above the eastern window is an early 12th-century window, now blocked but visible externally; between the windows is the 12th-century S. doorway (Plate, p. 132) similar to the N. doorway but of two plain orders with grooved and hollow-chamfered imposts and partly restored jambs. The N. and S. walls have each the splayed lower parts of four clearstorey windows now cut off by the roof timbers.
The West Tower (22 ft. by 24 ft.) is of one stage (Plate, p. 131) and part of a second and rises little above the roof of the nave. The N.W. stair-turret is gabled and the tower has a pyramidal roof. At the S.W. angle is a heavy 16th-century buttress of brick. There is no tower-arch. In the N. wall are two windows, the eastern a 13th-century lancet and the western set at a higher level and a single 12th century light of two plain orders with a round head. In the S. wall are two windows similar to those in the N. wall. In the W. wall is a late 14th or early 15th-century doorway, with double chamfered jambs and two-centred arch; it is set in the blocking of a larger 12th-century doorway with a moulded semi-circular arch and a defaced label; above the doorway is a 12th-century window similar but larger than those in the side walls; the projection enclosing the turret staircase has a roll-moulded internal angle. The remaining part of the second stage has in the N., S. and W. walls remains of the jambs of a series of panels now flush with the rest of the wall.
The Roof of the chancel has three trusses, the eastern is a late 15th-century hammer-beam truss and the two western are of late 14th or early 15th-century date and of king-post type with rebated king-posts and four-way struts. The late 15th-century roof of the nave is of four bays with four king-post trusses and one truss with queenposts; the curved braces of the tie-beams have spandrels carved with foliage and shields bearing the initials S.T. and G. with various merchants' marks and the Bourchier knot. The modern roof of the S. porch incorporates a 15th-century moulded tie-beam.
Fittings—Bells: two; 1st by John Danyell, inscribed "Vox Augustini Sonet in Aure Dei," 15th-century; 2nd by John Darbie, 1684, now broken up. Brasses: In chancel—(1) of John Whitacres, 1627, with figure in civilian dress and inscription; (2) to Elizabeth (Wiseman), wife of John Freshwater, 1681, inscription with shield of arms. Coffin-lid: Set in blocking of S. doorway to chancel—with calvary and ornamental stem, 13th-century. Door (Plate, p. 132): In S. doorway, of battens with ornamental iron hinges and straps with foliated ends, 12th-century, pierced scutcheon-plate, probably 13th-century. Font: In tower—part of font with square scalloped base, 12th-century, re-cut octagonal top, later. Glass: In chancel—in N.W. window, figure of female saint, 13th-century (Plate, p. 192); quarries with flower ornament and top of canopy, 14th-century. Locker: In chancel—in N. wall, plain square recess with wood lintel, date uncertain. Monument and Floor-slabs. Monument: In chancel —on N. wall, of Thomas Freshwater, 1638, and Sara, his third wife, 1634, marble wall-monument with kneeling figures of man and wife in double-arched recess flanked by Corinthian columns supporting an entablature, achievement and two shields of arms. Floor-slabs: In chancel—(1) Thomas Freshwater, 1690, with shield of arms; (2) to Elizabeth (Freshwater), wife of William Aylett, 1690, with defaced shield of arms; (3) to John Freshwater, 1686, with achievement of arms. Panelling: In tower—incorporated in seating, with carved frieze, 17th-century. Piscinae: In chancel—rough recess with projecting sill and round, ribbed drain, date uncertain. In nave— in E. splay of S.E. window, with pointed head and multifoiled drain, date uncertain. Plate: includes cup probably of 1705 and small paten of 1617. Table: In chancel—small with turned legs, 17th-century. Miscellanea: In nave—built into W. splay of rood-loft staircase, part of Purbeck marble bowl of font with shallow round-headed panels; fragment with saltire ornament and other fragments of worked stone, 12th-century.
a(2). Homestead Moat, at Moat Cottage, 250 yards E. of the church.
The following monuments, unless otherwise described, are of the 17th century and of two storeys, timber-framed and plastered or weather-boarded; the roofs are tiled. Some of the buildings have exposed ceiling-beams and original chimneystacks.
Condition—Good, or fairly good.
a(3). Heybridge Hall, 650 yards S.E. of the church, is of L-shaped plan with the wings extending towards the N. and E. and some modern additions. Inside the building is an original doglegged staircase, with turned balusters and heavy moulded handrail. One room has original panelling and on the first floor is a panelled door with a double shell-ornament at the top. A doorway on the same floor has a four-centred arch in a square head and appears to be of the 15th century and reused.
a(4). Cottage, 50 yards N.W. of (3), was built in the 15th century and has a cross-wing at the N. end. The upper storey projects at the E. end of the cross-wing. Inside the building the roof of the cross-wing has a king-post truss.
a(5). Jacob's Farm, house, ¼ m. N.E. of (4), was built in the 15th century with a central hall and cross-wings at the E. and W. ends. The W. wing is now included under the main roof and the projecting upper storey of the E. wing has been under-built. Inside the building the former hall has been divided into two storeys, but retains its original king-post truss; the king-post has a moulded and embattled capital. The original king-post truss of the E. wing also remains. There are two original windows with diamond-shaped mullions and now blocked.
a(6). Middle Farm, house, 400 yards S.E. of (5), has a cross-wing at the E. end.
b(7). Mound, 1 m. E.S.E. of the church and on the E. side of Basin Road, is large and flat-topped.
Holland, see Great Holland and Little Holland.
Horkesley, see Great Horkesley and Little Horkesley.