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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51. LITTLE YELDHAM. (E.b.)
(O.S. 6 in. xi. N.E.)
Little Yeldham is a small parish and village about 6 m. N.N.W. of Halstead.
(1). Parish Church of St. John the Baptist stands on the E. side of the village. The walls are of flint and pebble rubble with dressings of limestone and clunch; the roofs are tiled. The S.W. angle-buttresses of the nave contain a few tiles, possibly Roman. The Nave was built probably in the 12th or 13th century, but the W. wall was rebuilt in the 19th century. The Chancel was rebuilt apparently in the 15th century. The North Vestry and the South Porch are modern.
Architectural Description—The Chancel (18¾ ft. by 13¼ ft. at the E. end, and 14½ ft. at the W. end) has the axis deflected N. of that of the nave. In the E. wall is a modern window. In the N. wall are a window, doorway, and two arches, all modern. In the S. wall is a 15th-century window, partly restored, of two cinquefoiled lights and tracery in a two-centred head with a moulded external label. The chancel is divided from the nave by a modern stone screen.
The North Vestry is modern, but in the E. wall is a window partly of 14th-century material, re-used; it is of two trefoiled ogee lights and tracery under a square head with a moulded external label.
The Nave (39 ft. by 20 ft.), has, in the N. wall, a late 14th-century window of one wide light, with a slightly ogee cinquefoiled head. Further W. is a doorway, now blocked, possibly of the 13th century; it has chamfered jambs, and a two-centred head now glazed. In the S. wall are two windows; the eastern is of late 15th-century date, partly restored, and of two cinquefoiled lights with tracery in a four-centred head; the western is modern externally, but the semi-circular rear arch and the E. splay are possibly of the 12th century; the W. splay has been cut back square. Between the windows is a doorway of uncertain date, with a two-centred head, now plastered. In the W. wall is a modern window.
The Bell-cot at the W. end of the nave is now weather-boarded, and has a modern pyramidal roof. It is supported by four large chamfered posts and cross-beams with large curved braces, all probably of the 15th or 16th century.
Fittings—Bells: two; said to be by Miles Graye, 1674. Coffin-lid: In churchyard—against S. wall of nave, W. of porch, coped slab with beaded edge, and cross formy with plain scroll arms springing from the middle of the stem, stepped base, early 13th-century. Font: octagonal bowl, with cusped panels enclosing a molet, roses, blank shields, and a four-leaf flower, 15th-century; stem and base, modern. Monuments and Floorslabs. Floorslabs: In chancel—(1) to Thomas Cracherode, 1701; partly hidden by altar table, (2) to Waldegrave Sidey, born 1661; (3) to Sarah Cracherode, widow, 1705. Piscina: In chancel —with chamfered jambs and trefoiled ogee head, sunk spandrels, quatrefoil drain, 14th-century.
Condition—Good, but N.W. angle somewhat weak.
(2). Little Yeldham Hall, house and barn, ½ m. S.S.E. of the church. The House is of two storeys with attics; the walls are of plastered timber-framing faced with modern brick, and the roofs are tiled. It was built early in the 17th century, on an H-shaped plan with the cross-wings, at the E. and W. ends. The E. wing has modern extensions at both ends and at the side, and at the back there is a modern addition between the wings. In the W. wing is an original chimney-stack with grouped diagonal shafts. Inside the building are chamfered ceiling-beams and shaped wall-posts, and one room has an original door of moulded battens.
The Barn, N.W. of the house is a 17th-century building of five bays with aisles; the walls are of plastered timber-framing, and the roof is thatched.
Condition—Of house and barn, good.
(3). The Rectory, 250 yards S.E. of the church, is of two storeys; the walls are of plastered timber-framing and modern brick, and the roofs are tiled. The S.E. block was built early in the 17th century, but the rest of the house is modern. The original chimney-stack has grouped diagonal shafts. Inside the building, in the original block, are chamfered ceiling-beams and five original doors of moulded battens, also an original wide fireplace.
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 build ngs have wide fireplaces, original chimney-stacks, and exposed ceiling-beams.
Condition—Good or fairly good, without exception.
(4). Red House, 300 yards N.N.W. of the church, was built on an L-shaped plan with the wings extending towards the N.W. and S.E., but there is a modern addition at the back of the S.E. wing. On the S.E. front the upper storey projects and is supported by carved brackets. At the back of the S.E. wing is a gable with a beam at the base carved with the date 1619, and the initials T.S. Inside the building are shaped wall-posts and an original oak battened door. Two rooms are lined with original panelling, and another room has some original panels incorporated in modern work.
(5). Hyde Farm, house, 1,100 yards S.W. of the church, with two modern wings at the back.
(6). Cottage, now four tenements, 1,100 yards S.E. of the church.
(7). Cottage, now two tenements, ¾ m. S.E. of the church, is of late 17th or early 18th-century date with modern additions at the back.