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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43. LINDSELL. (C.c.)
(O.S. 6 in. (a)xv. S.W.; (b)xxiv. N.W.)
Lindsell is a small parish about 4 m. N.N.E. of Great Dunmow.
b (1). Parish Church of St. Mary the Virgin stands in the middle of the parish. The walls are of flint and pebble rubble, except those of the tower, which are partly of red brick; the walls of the chancel are covered with cement; the dressings are of limestone and clunch. The roofs are covered with slate, lead and tiles. The chancel-arch is of the 12th century. The Nave is of doubtful date. The chancel was rebuilt probably in the 13th century, and c. 1330 the South Aisle was added. The South-West Tower was built in the W. bay of the S. aisle probably late in the 16th century. The Chancel was again rebuilt, probably in the 18th century, and in the 19th century the church was restored and the South Porch added.
Architectural Description—The Chancel (14 ft. by 19 ft.) has a late 13th-century E. window, re-set, of three lights under a two-centred head with a hollow-chamfered rear arch; the mullions, tracery and external head are modern. In the N. wall is a window of doubtful date and of two lights with obtuse heads, and a four-centred rear arch, which is entirely covered with cement. In the S. wall is a single-light window, probably of the 13th-century, re-set, with a modern head and sill; further W. is a 13th-century doorway, with chamfered jambs and two-centred arch, all much restored. The flattened semi-circular chancel-arch is of the 12th century, and of one plain order; the imposts are chamfered on the under side, and the S. respond has been partly rebuilt with brick; on the S. side is a large squint, probably of the 15th century, rebuilt in the 17th or 18th century; it has an irregular four-centred arch on the E. side, and a chamfered two-centred arch of wider span on the W. side.
The Nave (31 ft. by 22 ft.) has, in the N. wall, two windows; the eastern, of c. 1330, is of two trefoiled ogee lights, with a quatrefoil in a two-centred head which has a plain label; the rear arch is hollow-chamfered; the western window is modern, and below the W. jamb are slight traces of a former N. doorway. The S. arcade of c. 1330, has been rebuilt, and is of two bays, with arches of two moulded orders; the eastern arch forms three parts of a semi-circle, abutting against the E. respond; the western arch is of quadrant form, and dies into the W. respond; the pier is of quatrefoil plan, and has a moulded capital and chamfered base; the responds are of plastered brick, the E. respond being probably of the 18th century, and the W. respond of the 16th century. In the W. wall is a modern window.
The South Aisle (7½ feet wide) has, in the E. wall, a window of two lights, entirely modern outside, with hollow-chamfered internal splays and four-centred rear arch, probably of the 16th century. In the S. wall is a window of doubtful date, and of two cinquefoiled lights, with tracery under a square head, completely restored outside. Further W. is the late 14th-century S. doorway, with jambs and segmental-pointed arch of two moulded orders, under a moulded label.
The South-West Tower (about 7½ ft. square) is of three stages, undivided by string-courses, and has an embattled parapet and buttresses of brick. The ground stage has, in the E. wall, a doorway of the 14th century, re-set; the moulded jambs and two-centred head are now covered with plaster. In the W. wall is a window, probably of late 14th-century date; it is of one trefoiled light under a four-centred head, and the moulded label has animal-stops. The second stage has, in the S. wall, a brick loop of the 16th or 17th century. The bell-chamber has, in each wall, a 16th or 17th-century brick window of two pointed lights.
The Roof of the nave is of three bays, with tie-beams possibly of the 17th century, but now painted. In the W. wall an old truss is exposed outside, and filled in with rubble. The roof of the tower is probably of late 16th-century date.
Fittings—Bells: three and sanctus; 2nd by Henry Jordan, 15th-century, inscribed "Sancta Katerina Ora Pro Nobis." Brass: In nave— at E. end, of Thomas Fytche, 1514, and Agnes his wife; figures of man in fur-trimmed cloak, and of woman in pedimental head-dress, groups of six sons and five daughters, and inscription. Chest: Now in outbuilding at Lindsell Hall— 'dug-out' of oak, iron-bound, mediæval. Communion Table: with turned legs and plain rails, possibly late 17th-century. In tower— with fluted legs, moulded rails, upper rails with foliated brackets, 17th-century. Font: octagonal bowl with quatrefoil panels, alternate panels having plain shields; stem with buttressed angles, panelled sides and moulded base, 15th-century. Glass: In chancel—in E. window, fragments; in N. light, figure of saint, much defaced, probably 13th-century; above it, figures of man and woman kneeling at prayer-desks; below it, fragments of inscription, early 16th-century; in middle light, figures of the Virgin and Child, and of an archbishop or bishop, below them a shield azure a bend gules cotised or with three scallops argent on the bend and in chief a mullet, for Walden Abbey, and a fragmentary inscription "Thome Fytche et fuit scdus filius . . . rate," early 16th-century, grisaille background, 13th-century; in S. light, figure of saint, much defaced, probably 13th-century, above it, figures of man and woman kneeling at prayer-desks, and below it, fragmentary inscription, with the name "Dumowe," early 16th-century. In tower—in W. window, re-set, quatrefoil, coloured, 14th or 15th-century. Niche: In E. respond of S. arcade—with square head, covered with plaster, date uncertain. Piscina: In chancel—plain, with two-centred head, moulded sill, two round drains, 13th-century. Plate: includes cup and small stand-paten of 1632. Tiles: In chancel—nine small 'slip' tiles with designs of foliage, eagle, etc. Miscellanea: In chancel—cut on E. jamb of S. doorway, sundial, mediæval. In nave—above squint in E. wall, head-corbel, possibly supported the former rood-beam, possibly 15th-century.
b (2). Lindsell Hall, S.W. of the church, is of two storeys with attics, timber-framed and plastered; the roofs are tiled. The form of the house is of the 15th century, but the earliest detail is of the 16th century. The plan is half-H-shape, but the S.W. wing is a 17th-century addition, and the N.W. wing is modern. On the E. front the upper storey projects and is gabled at each end; under the northern projection are two curved brackets. The central chimney-stack is partly of the 16th century.
Interior—On the ground floor, the middle room has 16th-century moulded ceiling-beams and a very wide fireplace, now partly filled in. The S. room has a chamfered ceiling-beam. On the first floor, in the S. room, a cambered tie-beam, possibly of the 15th century, is exposed, and also a chamfered ceiling-beam; in the other rooms some shaped wall-posts are exposed.
b (3). Prior's Hall, 200 yards W. of the church, is of two storeys, timber-framed and plastered; the roofs are tiled. The W. half of the house is probably of 15th or early 16th-century date, and the E. half is a late 16th-century addition. An 18th-century wing projecting towards the N. from the E. end makes the plan L-shaped. At the W. end is a projecting chimney-stack of late 17th or early 18th-century brickwork.
Interior—On the ground floor, the E. room has chamfered ceiling-beams, and there are two late 16th or early 17th-century panelled doors. On the first floor the main block is divided into four bays by shaped wall-posts; in the W. half is an original cambered tie-beam with one curved bracket, and a late 16th or early 17th-century panelled door.
b (4). Lashley Hall and moat, 5/8 m. S.S.E. of the church. The House is of two storeys with attics, timber-framed and plastered; the roofs are tiled. It was built c. 1540, on an L-shaped plan with the wings extending towards the N. and W. Probably late in the 17th century the W. wing was considerably extended, and on the S.E. there is a low addition, probably of the 18th century. The upper storey of the N. wing projects at the N. end. and has an original moulded bressumer. On the N. side of the W. wing is a projecting chimney-stack, original at the base, but the upper part is of late 17th-century date.
Interior—On the ground floor, the rooms in the original part of the house have moulded ceilingbeams, and the room in the N. wing has a late 16th or early 17th-century panelled dado. Other rooms have chamfered ceiling-beams. In the attic in the N. wing is an original door with moulded fillets forming three panels: it is not in situ, and has been altered at the top.
The Moat, W. of the house, is of irregular form.
Condition—Of house, good.
a (5). Cowel's Farm, house and moat, 1 m. N.W. of the church. The House is of two storeys, timber-framed, partly plastered and partly weather-boarded; the roofs are tiled. It was built in the first half of the 17th century, on an L-shaped plan, with the wings extending towards the N. and E. Probably late in the 17th century the E. wing was further extended. The central chimney-stack of the main block is original. Inside the building some of the ceiling-beams and joists are exposed, and there is a chamfered ceiling-beam in the extension of the E. wing.
The E. arm of the Moat has been filled in.
Condition—Of house, poor.
b (6). Simpkin's Farm, house, ½ m. S.W. of the church, is of two storeys, timber-framed and plastered; the roofs are tiled. It is of T-shaped plan, with the cross-wing at the W. end, but was probably originally H-shaped. The cross-wing is of the 15th century, but the main block, formerly containing the Hall, was rebuilt c. 1500, and the other wing has since been destroyed.
On the S. front the upper storey of the main block projects, and the moulded cantilever joists are exposed on the soffit. At the back of the main block is a late 16th-century chimney-stack, modern at the top. At the E. end the timberframing is exposed and there are traces of a doorway with a four-centred arch.
Interior—The rooms on the ground floor of the main block have moulded ceiling-beams and joists of c. 1500, which divide the floor into two bays; the eastern and western beams are set a short distance away from the end walls, which are probably of earlier date. The room at the back of the cross-wing has an open timber ceiling with chamfered beams. On the first floor, the roof of the main block has plain tie-beams with curved braces, corresponding to the bays of the floor below. The 15th-century roof of the cross-wing has plain tie-beams with curved braces, king-post and central purlin. In the back yard, loose, is half a four-centred door-head of oak with a carved foliage spandrel, of c. 1500; it probably formed part of the front doorway.
b (7). Rakefairs, house, ¾ m. W.S.W. of the church, is of two storeys, timber-framed and plastered; the roofs are covered with slate. It is of T-shaped plan with the cross-wing at the N.E. end. The main block is possibly of the 15th century, but the cross-wing is of early 17th-century date. In the W. angle is a modern addition. The N.E. front and the N.W. end of the cross-wing have exposed timber-framing, and there are two early 17th-century windows with moulded oak mullions. The early 17th-century central chimney-stack has four grouped diagonal shafts. Inside the building several rooms have chamfered ceiling-beams, and in the original wing the wide flat joists are exposed.
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. Several of the buildings have original chimney-stacks, wide fireplaces and exposed ceiling-beams.
Condition—Good or fairly good, unless noted.
b (8). The Old Vicarage, 220 yards S.S.E. of the church, was built probably late in the 16th century. It probably extended originally further towards the E. At the W. end of the N. front the upper storey projects and is gabled, and the projection has curved brackets. The original central chimney-stack has a moulded brick capping. Inside the building, on the first floor, is a steeply cambered tie-beam.
a (9). Porridge Hall, ¾ m. N.N.E. of the church, is of T-shaped plan, with the cross-wing at the S.E. end. At the N.W. end there are two original window openings. Inside the building, in the N.W. room, the timber construction is exposed.
a (10). Cottage, now two tenements, W. of (9), is of L-shaped plan, with the wings extending towards the N.E. and N.W.
a (11). Duck End Farm, house, about 1m. N.N.W. of the church, is of L-shaped plan, with the wings extending towards the W. and N. The W. wing has a modern extension.
a (12). Pettits, cottage, now two tenements, ¾m. N.N.W. of the church.
a (13). Cottage, at the S. end of Holders Green, 600 yards W.N.W. of (12).
a (14). Cottage, at fork of roads, 120 yards S.S.W. of (13).
a (15). Cottage, 200 yards N.W. of (14), is of L-shaped plan, with the wings extending towards the N. and W. Inside the building is a moulded ceiling-beam.