38. GREAT HORKESLEY. (C.b.)
(O.S. 6 in. (a)xviii. N.E. (b)xviii. S.E.)
Great Horkesley is a parish 4 m. N.N.W.
of Colchester. The church and the desecrated
chapel (now a cottage) are the principal monuments.
b(1). Parish Church of All Saints stands in
the N. part of the parish. The walls are of limestone and flint-rubble with some pudding-stone
and septaria; the dressings are of limestone and
brick and the roofs are tiled. The Nave was built
in the 12th century. In the 14th century the
Chancel was rebuilt, the North Vestry and Chapel
added and the West Tower built. Early in the
15th century the North Aisle and arcade were
built and later in the same century the South
Porch was added. The church was restored in the
19th century when the chancel-arch was rebuilt.
The detail of the N. arcade is interesting.
Architectural Description—The Chancel (24½ ft.
by 15¼ ft.) has a 15th-century E. window of three
cinquefoiled lights with vertical and embattled
tracery in a two-centred head with a moulded
label and head-stops. In the N. wall is a 14th-century archway, partly restored; it is two-centred and of two chamfered orders; further E. is
a 14th-century doorway with chamfered jambs,
two-centred arch and moulded label. In the S. wall
are two 15th-century windows, the eastern is of two
cinquefoiled lights in a square head with a moulded
label; the western is similar but is continued
down below an embattled transom with cinquefoiled heads beneath it; between the windows is
a 15th-century doorway with moulded jambs and
two-centred arch in a square head with a moulded
label and quatrefoiled spandrels. The chancel-arch
The North Vestry has in the E. wall a window
all modern except the moulded internal lintel
which is perhaps of the 16th century. The late
15th-century N.E. diagonal buttress has a moulded
plinth with quatrefoiled panels enclosing a shield
and two roses.
The North Chapel (14¼ ft. by 15¼ ft.) has in
the N. wall two 14th-century windows each of
two cinquefoiled lights with a quatrefoil in a
two-centred head with a moulded label; between
them is a buttress similar to that of the vestry
and with two shields of the Trinity and St. George
and a rosette. In the W. wall is a 15th-century
archway, four-centred and of two moulded orders,
the outer continuous and the inner springing from
attached shafts with moulded capitals and bases;
S. of it is a squint.
The Nave (40¼ ft. by 19 ft.), has an early 15th-century N. arcade (Plate, p. 126) of three bays with
two-centred arches of two moulded orders and a
label on the S. side with head-stops; the inner
order of the arches is carved with square flowers
and bosses of foliage, shields with (a) five bells
and (b) five chalices and hosts, crowns, an angel,
man's head and a woman's head with head-dress
of the period; the moulded columns have each
four moulded and attached shafts with moulded
capitals alternately plain and embattled, and
moulded bases; the responds have each one
attached shaft; piers and responds have been
partly restored; E. of the arcade is a modern
opening. In the S. wall are two much restored
15th-century windows each of three cinquefoiled
lights with vertical tracery in a segmental-pointed
head with a moulded label; further W. is the
15th-century S. doorway with moulded and shafted
jambs and two-centred arch with a moulded label
and angel stops; the doorway has small square
flowers carved in the hollow mouldings. The
buttresses are similar to that of the N. vestry
and carved with rosettes on the plinth; the
S.W. angle of the nave has 12th-century quoins.
The North Aisle (17¼ ft. wide), is of the 15th
century and has in the N. wall two windows
similar to those in the nave and partly restored;
further W. is the N. doorway with hollow-chamfered
jambs and two-centred arch with a moulded label.
In the W. wall is a window uniform with those in
the N. wall.
The West Tower (10½ ft. square) is of four stages
the three lower of the 14th century and the uppermost of late 15th-century date with an embattled
parapet. The tower-arch is two-centred and of
one plain order and above it is the 12th-century
window of the former nave and of one pointed light.
The W. window is partly restored and of two pointed
lights in a two-centred head. The second stage has
in the N. and S. walls a single-light window with
a two-centred head. The third stage has in each
wall a single-light window with a two-centred
head, all blocked and only the E. window showing
externally. The bell-chamber has in each wall a
late 15th-century window originally of two cinquefoiled lights in a four-centred head with a moulded
label, but with mullion, etc., mostly broken away.
The South Porch is of late 15th-century date,
much restored and of timber on modern dwarf
walls. The outer archway is modern but above
it is a moulded and embattled lintel. The side
walls have each seven open lights with moulded
mullions and cinquefoiled and traceried heads.
Great Horkesley, the Parish Church of All Saints.
The Roof of the chancel is of mid 15th-century
date and of two bays; it is of braced collar-beam
type with moulded main timbers, curved braces
forming two-centred arches with moulded pendants
and springing from moulded and embattled corbels.
The flat 15th-century roof of the N. chapel has
curved braces to the principals and wall-posts
resting on embattled stone corbels carved with
heads; the moulded and embattled wall-plates
have carved flowers. The early 15th-century roof
of the nave is of braced collar-beam type and
of three bays with moulded main timbers; the
braces form two-centred arches and spring from
wall-posts standing on stone corbels carved with
heads, etc.; one wall-post has a figure holding a
shield. The 15th-century roof of the N. aisle is of
three bays and similar to that of the N. chapel
but with intermediate tie-beams and moulded
Fittings—Bells: six; 3rd by Miles Graye, 1679;
4th and 9th from the Bury Foundry, late 15th
or early 16th-century, and inscribed respectively
"Sancta Maria Ora Pro Nobis" and "Virgo Nos
Ad Regna Coronata Duc Beata." Chair: In chancel
—with richly carved and inlaid back, carved arms
and turned legs, early 17th-century. Coffin-lid:
In tower—tapering slab with double hollowchamfered edge, 13th-century. Communion
Table: In vestry—with turned legs, late 17th-century. Doors: In chancel—in doorway to
vestry, of overlapping battens with moulded frame
planted on, strap-hinges, probably 14th-century.
In nave—in S. doorway, of overlapping battens
with strap-hinges, 15th-century. Floor-slab: In
chancel—to Samuel Gibbs, 1692, with shield of
arms. Font-cover: modern, but incorporating
pierced and traceried panels, crocketed canopy,
heads, etc., 15th-century. Glass: In N. aisle,
in N.W. window, coloured fragments. Indents:
In chancel—(1) of foliated cross springing from
beast, marginal inscription in single Lombardic
capitals "Dominus (?) Richardus Oliver quondam
huius ecclesie rector qui obiit 11 die Junii Anno
Domin MCCCX(X ?) VI (I?)." In nave—(2) of
inscription-plate. Piscinae: In chancel—with
chamfered jambs and two-centred head, quatrefoiled drain, 14th-century. In N. chapel—in E.
wall, with two-centred head and multifoiled drain,
14th-century. In N. aisle—in front of squint,
pillar-piscina with scalloped capital and chamfered
shaft, square drain, 12th-century. Pulpit: octagonal with band of carved vine ornament at top,
moulded panels in lower stage, carved arcaded
panels above, early 17th-century. Sundial: On
Nave buttress—scratched circle with Roman
b(2). Chapel of St. Mary the Virgin (Plate,
p. 127), now a cottage, 1 m. S.S.E. of the church.
The walls are of red brick and the roofs are tiled.
It was built probably late in the 15th century,
the eastern part forming the chapel and the
western part a priest's house of two storeys. The
walls have a moulded plinth and crow-stepped
gables at the E. and W. ends. In the E. wall is a
large blocked window with a two-centred head;
above it, in the gable, is a small niche with a
cinquefoiled head. In the N. wall is an original
doorway of stone with moulded jambs and four-centred arch in a square head with a square
moulded label and spandrels carved with foliage,
a shield and a rose; further W. is a window with
a cinquefoiled head and now blocked. In the
S. wall are two modern windows with traces of old
openings above them; between them are remains
of the moulded label of the S. doorway. At the
W. end is a chimney-stack with two shafts, set
diagonally; further S. is a blocked window with a
Inside the building the division between the
chapel and house has been removed on the ground
floor, but the moulded head of the former partition
remains; the upper storey of the house projected
into the chapel and the moulded joists of this
projection remain. In the S. wall is an original
piscina with a four-centred head, and a cinquefoiled
drain with a carved boss in the middle. The roof
of the chapel has collar-beams and chamfered
wind-braces; in the S.E. angle is a carved corbel.
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 or thatched. Many
of the buildings have original chimney-stacks and
Condition—Good or fairly good, unless noted.
b(3). The Causeway, house, two tenements,
320 yards S. of (2).
b(4). Barrack Yard (Plate, p. 189), house, four
tenements, 220 yards S. of (3), was built in the
15th century and is of L-shaped plan with the
wings extending towards the E. and S. Inside
the building is an original king-post roof-truss.
b(5). Woodlands, house, 120 yards N.E. of (4),
was built in the 15th century with cross-wings at
the N. and S. ends. It has been much altered
but the roof has remains of the original king-post
b(6). New Barn, house, 300 yards W. of (3).
b(7). Knight's Farm, house, about 1,000 yards
W.S.W. of (6).
b(8). Cottage, near Mount Hall, and 750 yards
S.W. of the church.
b(9). The Grove, house, 1,000 yards S.S.E. of
the church, has been almost completely altered
and refaced. There is an original chimney-stack
with three grouped diagonal shafts.
b(10). Grove Cottage, two tenements, 100 yards
N.E. of (9), was built in the 16th century on a
half H-shaped plan with the wings extending
towards the E. In the 17th century the space
between the wings was filled in. Inside the building
is a blocked doorway with a four-centred head.
b(11). Whitehouse Farm (Plate, p. xxxi), house,
100 yards E.S.E. of (10), was built early in the
16th century with cross-wings at the N. and W.
ends. The upper storey projects at the W. end
of the cross-wings. Inside the building one room
has original moulded ceiling-beams and hollowchamfered joists.
b(12). Hospytt, house, 300 yards S. of (11), was
built in the 16th century or earlier with a cross-wing
at the E. end.
b(13). Baytree Farm (Plate, p. xxx), house, ¼ m.
N.E. of (11), was built in the 15th century with
cross-wings at the E. and W. ends. The upper
storey projects at the S. end of the cross-wings
and the whole of the timber-framing is exposed
on the S. front.
b(14). House, opposite (13), was built in the
15th century with a cross-wing at the S.W. end.
There it a 17th-century addition, possibly on the
site of the other cross-wing. The upper storey
projects at the S.E. end of the cross-wing. Inside
the building is an original doorway with a four-centred head. The cross-wing has an original
roof with a king-post truss.
b(15). Rookery Farm, house, ¼ m. E. of (14).
a(16). Potter's Farm, house, 600 yards N.N.E.
of (15), was built possibly in the 15th century but
has been much altered. The 17th-century chimney-stack has two grouped diagonal shafts.
a(17). Ridgenall, house, 300 yards W. of (16).
has a mid 16th-century N. wing and an L-shaped
17th-century addition to the S. of it. The rest
of the building is modern. Inside the building are
two original moulded ceiling-beams and some 17th-century panelling.
a(18). Whitepark Farm, house, nearly ¾ m. N.E.
of the church, was built in the 16th century on
a half H-shaped plan with the wings extending
towards the S. The central chimney-stack has
four grouped diagonal shafts.
a(19). Bridge House, 1 m. N. by E. of the church,
was built probably early in the 16th century. The
upper storey formerly projected in front, but has
been under-built. Inside the building the W. room
has original moulded ceiling-beams and joists.
b (20). Pitchbury Ramparts, in Pitchbury Wood,
about 2 m. S. of the church, are the N. end of a
large camp, roughly oval in shape, and defended
by a double rampart and ditch. The defences
are well preserved in the wood, the inner rampart
being 10 ft. above the ditch, which is 60 ft. wide
from crest to crest, but the greater part of the work
has been almost obliterated by the plough, and is
now only faintly discernible in a large field S. of
the wood. The camp appears to have been 800 ft.
long and 600 ft. wide. (Plan over page.)
Pitchbury Ramparts, Great Horkesley Parish