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An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in Essex, Volume 4, South east. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1923.

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In this section

11. BUTTSBURY. (C.c.)

(O.S. 6 in. (a)lx. N.W. (b)lx. N.E. (c)lx. S.W. (d)lx. S.E.)

Buttsbury is a parish immediately N. of Billericay.


d(1) A kiln was found about 1860 in the garden immediately north of the Workhouse, on the hill north of Billericay, in the south-eastern corner of this parish. It consisted of a circular basin of baked clay, 2½ ft. across and 3 ft. deep, with a rectangular flue running in a north-easterly direction, probably the stoke-hole or chimney. Fragments of vessels were found in and around it and fragments of 'brown jars' and amphorae were dug up in the same field. The tradition that a bath and flue with a tessellated pavement were unearthed here is probably a distortion of the above facts. Whatever structure there was could not have occupied a large area, for trenches and pits dug close by for a variety of reasons during the last twenty years have revealed nothing more. Burials with 'Samian' saucers, a bronze lamp and beads were discovered in widening the neighbouring road in 1863–6 (Essex Arch. Soc. Trans., II, 1863, 72; V, 1873, 211; hence Arch. Journ., XXXVI, 73; and Soc. of Antiq. Proc., VII, 371).


a(2). Parish Church of St. Mary stands on the W. side of the parish. The walls are probably of rubble but are largely covered with cement; the dressings are of limestone and the roofs are tiled. The North and South Aisles are perhaps of the 14th century but there is little evidence and they may be of the same date as the arcades, with the two doorways re-set. The Nave with its N. and S. arcades, was built late in the 15th century. Late in the 18th or early in the 19th century the Chancel was re-built and the West Tower and South Porch added.

The Church, Plan

Architectural Description — The Nave (26 ft. by 16½ ft.) has 15th-century N. and S. arcades each of two bays and with two-centred arches of two chamfered orders, the outer continuous and the inner springing from attached semi-octagonal shafts with moulded capitals.

The North Aisle (7½ft. wide) has in the N. wall a modern window and a N. doorway probably of early 14th-century date and with jambs and two-centred arch of two chamfered orders with a moulded label.

The South Aisle (7 ft. wide) has in the S. wall a modern window and a doorway probably of the 14th century and similar to the N. doorway.

The Roof of the chancel is of late 15th-century date and of king-post type; the middle tie-beam is modern.

Fittings—Bells: one, probably by Henry Jordan, 15th-century. Chests : In nave—at W. end, small framed chest with two old lock-plates and slot for coins, 16th-century. In tower—similar, with horizontal iron bands, probably 17th-century. Doors : In N. doorway (Plate, pp. 4–5)—of wide battens with remains of two ornamental hinges, early 13th-century, three added straps with similar ornament, one piece of purely ornamental ironwork and handle, 14th or 15th-century, iron grille in upper part, later. In S. doorway—of four wide battens with iron grille, date uncertain. Monument and Floor-slabs. Monument: In churchyard —N. of chancel, to Thomas Tyrell, 1638, table-tomb. Floor-slabs: In nave—(1) to Edward Francklin, 1680; (2) to Ann (Francklin), wife of John Lockey, 1688. Plate : includes cup of 1563 and cover-paten of 1567, both with bands of engraved ornament.

Condition—Bad, cracks in walls and much damp.


b(3). Great Blunts, 1½ m. S.E. of the church, is of two storeys with attics, timber-framed and plastered; the roofs are tiled. It was built probably late in the 16th or early in the 17th century on an irregular half H-shaped plan, the wings projecting towards the W.; there are later additions at the back. The three original chimneystacks have, respectively, three diagonal, three octagonal and four square shafts. Inside the building the ceiling-beams are exposed.


b(4). Bear Inn, in Stock village, nearly 1¾ m. E. of the church, is of two storeys, timber-framed and plastered; the roofs are tiled. It was built in the 16th century on a T-shaped plan, with the cross-wing at the E. end; at the back are modern additions. The gable on the N. front of the E. wing has original carved barge-boards with moulded pendants.


c(5). Hanakin's Farm, house, nearly 1¾ m. S. of the church, is of two storeys, timber-framed and plastered; the roofs are tiled. It was built in the 16th century on a T-shaped plan with the cross-wing at the E. end. The main block is of one storey only and has an original central chimney-stack.

Condition—Fairly good.