A History of the County of Essex: Volume 7. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1978.
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Great Warley contains three elements: in the north a suburb of Brentwood, with some light industry; along Warley Road and Great Warley Street a sequence of large houses, several of them designed or adapted by architects of repute; and in the rest of the parish a number of large farms. The first is often styled merely Warley.
The ancient parish lying immediately south of Brentwood, and comprising 2,890 a., was one of several long narrow parishes which sloped from the wooded ridge into the Thames plain; it was about 5 miles from north to south. (fn. 1) In 1934 the parish was divided between the urban districts of Brentwood and Hornchurch. (fn. 2)
The ground slopes from 375 ft. east of the Horse and Groom public house to less than 20 ft. north of Bury Farm, and the soil consists of London clay with an outcropping of Bagshot sands. (fn. 3) Two streams flow south and eventually join the Mardyke: one rises in the west of the parish near Hole Farm; the other for much of its length forms the eastern boundary with Little Warley.
Great Warley was one of the more populous parishes in Chafford hundred. In 1086 there were 36 recorded inhabitants, and in 1671 fifty-nine occupied houses. (fn. 4) The population in 1801 was 430, and after rising in 1811 and 1821 was back to 424 in 1831. In 1841 the population of 596 was swollen by labourers building the Eastern Counties railway. Settlement in the north of the parish followed the extension of the railway beyond Brentwood in 1843: the total population was 952 in 1851, 1,220 in 1861, and 2,051 in 1911. It hardly altered between 1911 and 1921, but in 1931 there were 2,676 inhabitants. The barracks, built in 1805 and re-opened in 1843, were in Little Warley but most of the married quarters were in Great Warley. In 1881 and 1891 they housed some 200 members of army families, and in 1901 and 1911 about 300. After the First World War their popuulation declined: to less than 150 in 1921, and to 202 in 1931. (fn. 5)
The road pattern of the late 18th century probably originated in the Middle Ages. (fn. 6) A road (Hartswood Road) ran over Warley common from Shenfield to Little Warley. Another ran from Brentwood over Warley Hill along the western edge of the common. It continued as Warley Road to the green, then west to Upminster and Hornchurch. (fn. 7) Mascalls Lane, from Brook Street, divided before entering the parish: one branch (now Eagle Way) crossed Warley Hill at the Horse and Groom and continued east across the common; the other (Dark Lane) ran south to the green, where it crossed the Warley Road at the Waylett (Walletts, or cross-roads) on its way south to St. Mary's Lane. Dark Lane probably took its name from the tunnel of elms through which it passed; south of the green most of the trees have been removed, and this stretch is now known as Great Warley Street. (fn. 8) In the Middle Ages a second, more westerly road apparently ran south from the green to St. Mary's Lane; it passed Hole Farm, Codham Hall, and Franks manor-house, and still existed in the 19th century as a series of footpaths and lanes known as Pilgrims Way. (fn. 9) From Little Warley two lanes ran westwards to the Street; the more northern no longer exists, but at the foot of the hill Bird Lane still runs across the Street to Codham Hall. In the mid 19th century a third lane, Wabbings Lane, lay between them, but by 1895 only the end nearest the Street survived. (fn. 10) The derivation of the name is unknown, but it is clearly related to the 8½ a. woodland ¼ mile to the north, known in 1843 as the Wabbings. (fn. 11)
This pattern of communication has been little altered since the 18th century. Residential building after the coming of the railway in 1840 led to the creation of a network of streets in the north of the parish. After the closure of the barracks in 1959 more building occurred. In the south the arterial road to Southend, opened in 1925, sliced across the parish between the rectory and the old church; in 1971 a fly-over was built to carry the Street over. (fn. 12)
In the Middle Ages Great Warley was a parish of scattered dwellings and farms. Among these was Codham Hall, mentioned in 1276 and perhaps earlier. (fn. 13) Bolens, and Herds, in the south of the parish, Hulmers, and Goldings, north of the church, occur in the 15th century. (fn. 14) Surviving buildings dating from the 15th century include Wallets, the post office, and a house facing westwards, all around the green, and Franks manor-house. (fn. 15) Hole Farm is a small timber-framed house of late medieval type. In the 17th century a chimney and ceiling were inserted in the central room. In the 18th or early 19th century an outshed was built along the north side, and the house was divided into cottages. It has been restored to single occupation and modernized in the present century
By the late 17th century Great Warley possessed a number of large houses: in 1671 sixteen out of sixty had six or more hearths. (fn. 16) On the Street, north of the arterial road, the red Brick House has a façade of the early 18th century masking elements of the 16th century, and next to it is Hulmers of the mid 18th century. (fn. 17) Warley Elms was built in the early 19th century on the site of an earlier house existing in 1774. (fn. 18) North of the green, Warley Place appears to have been built in the late 16th or 17th century; modernized c. 1840, the house was enlarged and its gardens were developed between 1875 and the First World War. (fn. 19) Warley House, opposite the Horse and Groom, was built in 1805–6 by the Board of Ordnance, apparently for the commandant of the barracks. It was sold in 1820. (fn. 20) Sir John English (1788–1840), a former surgeon-general to the Swedish army, owned it from 1826 until his death. (fn. 21) In 1921 it became the Marillac hospital. (fn. 22) In 1963 the hospital was transferred to the former officers' mess in Eagle Way, and Warley House was later demolished. (fn. 23)
Coombe Lodge was built c. 1854 for Edward Ind; the house itself lies in Cranham but the lodge, part of the grounds, and much of the original estate of 207 a. are in Great Warley. (fn. 24) In 1912 most, if not all, of the estate was sold to Evelyn Heseltine of the Goldings, in Warley Street. (fn. 25) Heseltine was a stock-broker who had come to Great Warley c. 1875; he bought Goldings in 1881, and throughout his life added to the estate. (fn. 26) In the 1880s Ralph Nevill designed cottages, stables, dairy, and alterations and additions to the main house in a style that combined red brick, darkened half-timbering, and shallow plateresque pargetting in a somewhat theatrical style. (fn. 27) From Heseltine the estate passed to his widow Emily H. (Minnie) Heseltine (d. 1943) and then successively to their grandson, E. R. Denys de Rougemont (d. 1959) and their daughter, Mrs. Muriel E. de Rougemont (d. 1967). In 1971 the estate, then comprising 540 a., was broken up and sold. (fn. 28)
Codham Hall, which belonged to the Warley Franks estate, was rebuilt in the later 19th century, after Richard Benyon bought the estate. It is a large building of yellow brick, typical of the Benyon farmhouses. In Benyon times it would have had a uniform trim of dark red paint. (fn. 29) Warley Lea, opposite Warley Place, was enlarged for Rose Willmott, perhaps on her marriage in 1891 to Robert Berkeley of Spetchley (Worcs.). The alterations are said to have been designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens. In 1957 a wing of the house was demolished. (fn. 30)
In 1769 there were two public houses in Great Warley, the Thatchers Arms and the Magpie. The Thatchers Arms, which stands north of the green, was rebuilt in the early 19th century; the Magpie, on Headley Common, became the Headley Arms c. 1846 and was last rebuilt in the 1960s. (fn. 31) The Horse and Groom, which stands on the corner of Warley Road and Mascalls Lane in South Weald parish, was built by 1770, probably for the benefit of those attending Brentwood races on Warley Common. It was at first called the King's Head or King Herod, and later (1778–81) the Horse and Jockey, before receiving its present name. (fn. 32)
The northern part of the parish remained open common until the 19th century. Warley common, which extended into Little Warley, was sometimes used in the 18th century for military camps, (fn. 33) as well as for the races. (fn. 34) In 1805 George Winn, who owned the manors of Great and Little Warley, sold 116 a. of the common to the government to build permanent barracks. (fn. 35) In 1840 the Eastern Counties railway was extended to Brentwood, looping south of the town, close to the common. (fn. 36) In 1843 it was extended to Chelmsford and Colchester. (fn. 37) In the same year the remaining 172 a. of Warley common were inclosed, providing a residential area convenient for Brentwood station and later for the staff of the large Essex lunatic asylum, which was opened in 1853 across the parish boundary in South Weald. (fn. 38)
This new suburb of Brentwood, usually called Warley to distinguish it from the villages of Great Warley and Little Warley, has grown steadily in the later 19th and 20th centuries. Most of the houses built between 1840 and 1939 are terraced or semi-detached, but there are a few detached houses of the mid 19th century in Warley Hill. One of the main developments has been the Warley Mount estate, begun in 1881; (fn. 39) south of it a photographic factory opened in Woodman Road in 1903, stimulated residential building in that area. (fn. 40) Considerable private building has taken place at Warley since the Second World War; and in 1959, when Warley barracks were closed, Brentwood U.D.C. bought part of the site, and in the following years built houses, shops, and blocks of flats. (fn. 41)
A post office was established at Great Warley in 1858. (fn. 42) The South Essex Waterworks Co. first supplied water in 1863; the present pumping-station in the Street bears two dates, 1881 and 1886. (fn. 43) Gas was first piped to the parish in 1871–2; electricity, which first became available in Brentwood town in 1902–3, was extended to Great Warley village in 1940. (fn. 44)
Notables connected with the parish include the naval administrators, William Gonson (d. 1544), Benjamin Gonson (d. 1577), and Benjamin Gonson (d. 1600), and the diarist John Evelyn (1620–1706). (fn. 45) Among the rectors, many of whom were scholars, were William Fulke (d. 1589), master of Pembroke Hall, Cambridge, and chaplain to Robert Dudley, earl of Leicester, and Hastings Robinson (d. 1866), evangelical, classicist, and historian. (fn. 46)
The manor of WARLEY, later known as WARLEY ABBESS or GREAT WARLEY, was held in 1066 by Barking Abbey as 3 hides. (fn. 47) It was probably identical with the 3 hides devised by Leofgifu to her brother-in-law Godwine, c. 1040. (fn. 48) The manor was assigned to the cellaress and remained with the abbey until the Dissolution. In 1540 it was bought with other properties by William Gonson, Treasurer of the Navy. (fn. 49) After his suicide in 1544 it was assigned to his widow Bennett for life, and then to one of his younger sons, Benjamin. (fn. 50) Benjamin, also Treasurer of the Navy, died in 1577 and was succeeded at Great Warley by his son, another Benjamin Gonson, who was Clerk of the Ships. (fn. 51)
On the death of the younger Benjamin Gonson in 1600 Warley Abbess was assigned for life to his widow Mary, later Lady Bulstrode, with reversion to his sisters Ursula Peterson, Anne Fleming, Bennett Wallenger, and Thomasine Fenton (later Browne). (fn. 52) When Lady Bulstrode died in 1627 the estate was divided between the heirs of the sisters. The manorial rights, with land in the north of the parish, went to (Sir) Richard Browne (Bt.), Thomasine's son; Great Warley Hall and the surrounding land went to Bennett's son, Benjamin Wallenger; Clay Tye farm, in the south of the parish, went to Thomas Disney, widower of Ursula, daughter of Ursula Peterson; and Warley Place went to Capt. Arthur Ashenhurst and his wife Ursula, daughter of Anne Fleming. (fn. 53)
In 1643 Sir Robert Browne was holding the manor and 150 a. land, including the area later called Hart's Wood. (fn. 54) He must have acquired more land, for in 1649 he sold the manor with 404 a. for £2,500 to his son-in-law, John Evelyn, the diarist; Evelyn held it only until 1655, when, complaining that heavy taxes ate up the rents, he sold it to John Hart. (fn. 55) In 1669 Hart sold it to Roland Wynn. (fn. 56)
Roland Wynn (1609–76) was a London merchant, the younger brother of Sir George Wynn (1607–67), the first baronet, of Nostell (Yorks.). (fn. 57) At his death Wynn devised the manor first for life to his brother Mark Wynn (d. 1699), and then to Sir George's two youngest sons, Mark and Richard Wynn. (fn. 58) The elder Mark Wynn was followed at Warley by another Mark Wynn. (fn. 59) This branch of the family died out in 1763, and Great Warley passed to a distant cousin George Winn (1725–98), who was created a baronet in 1776 and Baron Headley in 1797. (fn. 60) The manor passed to Headley's second son George Winn (d. 1827), after whose death it was held successively by his sons, Mark (d. 1830) and Charles (d. 1877), Lord Headley. (fn. 61) The manor, with 1,011 a. in Great and Little Warley, descended with the barony until the death in 1913 of Charles Winn, Lord Headley. It then passed to his daughter Avis (d. 1936), then the wife of Dr. R. J. L. Llewellyn. (fn. 62) In 1919 she offered for sale 794 a. in the two parishes, of which over 500 a. were in Great Warley. (fn. 63) From Mrs. Llewellyn the manor and the rump of the estate passed to the daughter of her first marriage, Mrs. Avis Irene Fardell. (fn. 64) In 1958, under a family trust, the manor with 432 a. passed to Mrs. Fardell's son George W. Fardell. Most of the estate has since been sold. (fn. 65)
Great Warley Hall and the neighbouring land, which in 1627 had been assigned to Benjamin Wallenger, descended in his family until the death of Antony Wallenger in 1728. It then passed to his youngest daughter, who married a London merchant named Harris. (fn. 66) In the later 18th century the estate was owned for a time by the Grove family; in 1814 it comprised 229 a. (fn. 67) In 1837 it was owned by Samuel Francis, who later bought Warley Franks. (fn. 68) Great Warley Hall, the ancient manor-house, stood near the church. It apparently collapsed or was demolished in the 1730s. (fn. 69) In 1774 the estate farm-house was Pound House, which stood about a mile north, near the manorial pound. (fn. 70) The present Great Warley Hall, of red brick with a slate roof, was built c. 1840.
Clay Tye farm, with 212 a. in the south of the parish, was assigned in 1627 to Thomas Disney. (fn. 71) In 1705 it was sold by Elizabeth Rothwell to St. Thomas's hospital, London, which, adding to the farm in 1879, sold it with 332 a. in 1927. (fn. 72)
Warley Place, which in 1627 fell to the share of Capt. Ashenhurst and his wife Ursula, later passed to her half-brother Giles Fleming (d. 1633) and his son John Fleming, who had 9 daughters. (fn. 73) Thomas Jackson (d. 1728) of Gray's Inn devised Warley Place to his son George Jackson (d. 1734) and he to his sister Winifred Jackson (d. 1746). She devised the estate and much other property to David Scott, who retained them after his title was challenged in 1747–8. (fn. 74)
In the 1760s and 1770s Warley Place was owned and occupied by Thomas Adams. (fn. 75) It was held c. 1781–4 by Anthony Merry before passing in 1784 or 1785 to Samuel Bonham (d. 1821), who was succeeded by his son, Lt.-Gen. Pinson Bonham (d. 1855). (fn. 76)
Frederick Willmott (d. c. 1892) bought Warley Place, with 33 a. in 1875; it passed to his widow and by 1902 to his daughter Ellen A. Willmott (d. 1934). (fn. 77) Between 1875 and 1914 the estate was enlarged, but in her last years Miss Willmott sold outlying parts, and in 1935, after her death, the remaining 75 a. were sold in 7 lots. (fn. 78) The big house and 45 a. were bought by Mrs. Gray, who sold them in 1938 to Mr. A. J. T. Carter. (fn. 79) His attempt to develop the estate in 1938–9 was thwarted by the Green Belt legislation of 1938. (fn. 80)
Warley Place was 'an ancient house' c. 1725; in 1774 it was said to be of brick, embattled; and 100 years later it was described as a 'good old red-brick embattled mansion modernized'. (fn. 81) In 1777 James Gandon exhibited at the Royal Academy an elevation of the principal front, but there is no evidence that this design was carried out. (fn. 82) It seems more likely that alterations were made to the east front c. 1840. Later views show it as a 7-bay house, of brick, with an Ionic portico. (fn. 83) The three central bays were of three storeys, surmounted by a dentilled pediment; the flanking wings were slightly recessed and had only two storeys, their roofs half hidden by a plain parapet. Between 1875 and 1904 extensive additions, including a conservatory, almost doubled the size of the house, (fn. 84) which was demolished in 1939. (fn. 85)
The gardens were largely developed by Miss Willmott before the First World War and became among the most celebrated in the country. (fn. 86) East of the house was an Old English rose-garden with a summer-house; beyond the lawn SW. of the house an alpine ravine-garden ended in a pool; to the NE. the land sloped westwards from a broad terrace with a glazed summer-house to a small tree-sheltered boating lake with a landing-stage and Swiss chalet; further north a group of heated glass-houses contained orchids, ferns, palms, and other exotics. After Miss Willmott's death there was talk of the gardens becoming a branch of the gardens at Kew but the project was dropped on the outbreak of the Second World War. (fn. 87) In 1975 the gardens were a wooded wilderness.
The manor of WARLEY, later known as WARLEY FRANKS, in the SW. of the parish, consisted in 1066 of two hides, held by Godric. In 1086 Swein of Essex held it in demesne. (fn. 88) The overlordship of the manor subsequently descended as part of the honor of Rayleigh. (fn. 89) In 1285 the manor was said to be held of Laurence of Plumberow in Little Hockley, himself a tenant of the honor of Rayleigh. (fn. 90)
Turold is the first known tenant of the manor. (fn. 91) By the 13th century the demesne lordship had passed to the Scoland (Estotlond, Escoland, or Scodlaund) family. Osbert was the first member to hold it; Geoffrey was party to a case concerning land in Warley in 1220; and in 1262 Frank Scoland agreed to pay £10 and 1 lb. cummin annually at Christmas to Geoffrey Scoland from whom he was to hold a messuage and 2 carucates of land in Warley. (fn. 92) Frank died shortly before 3 April 1285 and was succeeded by his infant son Frank. (fn. 93) From one or both of them the manor took its name of Warley Franks. (fn. 94)
Frank Scoland (d. 1339) was followed by his son Henry (d. 1367) and grandson Frank. (fn. 95) The latter in 1372 sold the manor and advowson to John Payn of London, armourer. (fn. 96) In 1375, the year of his death, Payn settled the manors of Warley Franks and South Hall in Rainham, and the Bridge House lands in Upminster, in trust for his wife Joan (d. 1418). (fn. 97) In 1389 she transferred the estates to her daughter and son-in-law, Ann and Thomas Newton, probably on their marriage. (fn. 98) Newton died, and by 1406 Ann had married John Godeston. (fn. 99) Ann died before her mother, but John was still alive in 1428. (fn. 100) Their son Robert Godeston (d. 1453) was succeeded by his son John, who was still a minor in 1461, when his guardian leased Franks for £22 a year to Lewis FitzLewis. (fn. 101) John Godeston, who in 1498 was declared a lunatic, died in the same year leaving as heirs the five young daughters of his son William. (fn. 102) Two of the daughters died without issue: Millicent in 1513 or 1514 and Elizabeth between 1519 and 1529. (fn. 103) Of the other three, Joan married Hugh Ellis, Alice John Elton, and Margaret Ralph Holinshed. (fn. 104)
In 1529 Margaret and Ralph Holinshed sold their third of the manor to Henry Averell (d. 1540). (fn. 105) Averell's son John (d. 1554) devised his lands in Warley Franks to his cousin Elizabeth Clarke, later the wife of Peter Poulton. (fn. 106) She disposed of her holding: Henry Billingsley sold two-thirds of it to Anne and Thomas Drywood of Great Warley in 1568, and in 1562 the remaining third was already in the hands of Bartholomew Averell at the time of his death. (fn. 107) Averell's posthumous heir, Bartholomew, sold it to Anne and Thomas Drywood in 1584. (fn. 108)
Alice Elton died before her husband John (d. 1548). (fn. 109) They were followed by their sons John (d. 1550) and Charles (d. 1586) and Charles's son Anthony, who in 1590–1 sold this portion of the manor and estate to Thomas Drywood. (fn. 110)
Joan Ellis, the eldest of the Godeston sisters, also died before her husband Hugh (d. 1538). (fn. 111) Their son William died in January 1544 and in September his only child, Anne, was born. (fn. 112) In 1564 she had livery of her Warley inheritance as Ann Ellis. (fn. 113) Nothing more is known of Anne Ellis, but it has been plausibly conjectured that she became the wife of Thomas Drywood, and that the purchases of 1568, 1584, and 1590–1 reconstituted the manor of Warley Franks in its entirety. (fn. 114)
Thomas Drywood (d. 1591) devised all his lands to his widow Anne. (fn. 115) She died c. 1608, and was succeeded by their son William, who in 1611 sold the manor with 252 a. to Nicholas Fuller, Common Pleader and an M.P. for the city of London. (fn. 116) Fuller died in 1620, and his son Sir Nicholas Fuller in 1621. (fn. 117) The latter left an infant son Dowse, after whose death in 1657 Warley Franks was sold for £5,900 to Thomas Gundrey, an Exchequer official, and a creditor of Fuller for £2,000. (fn. 118)
Gundrey (d. 1669) was succeeded by his grandson (d. 1724) and great-grandson (d. 1745) both named Thomas Gundrey. (fn. 119) The younger Thomas's heir was his brother John (d. 1749) whose widow, Mary, held the manor at least until 1766. (fn. 120) By 1781 she had been succeeded by her husband's nephew, yet another Thomas Gundrey, upon whose death in 1805 Francis John Browne (d. 1833) of Frampton (Dors.) succeeded to the property. (fn. 121) Browne left all his estates, including Warley Franks, to Lieut.-Gen. Sir Colquhoun Grant, his niece's husband. (fn. 122) In 1834 Grant's daughter, Maria Marcia, married Richard Brinsley Sheridan, the grandson and namesake of the dramatist, and on her father's death in 1835, they inherited Frampton and Warley Franks. (fn. 123) In 1837 the latter estate contained 640 a., Samuel Francis being the tenant of 349 a. (fn. 124) Francis (d. 1874) appears to have bought the estate c. 1860. (fn. 125) In 1876 his heirs sold it to Richard Benyon, who already owned estates in Cranham and the Ockendons. (fn. 126) In 1920 George Seton de Winton, who had been the tenant for about 20 years, bought Franks manor-house and 129 a. (fn. 127) The property passed about 1926 to Mrs. Margaret J. de Winton Kyffin, probably his niece, who sold it in 1945. (fn. 128) In 1975, after passing through various hands, it was owned by Mr. Andrew Cheale. In 1937 the rest of the estate, then comprising 464 a., with Codham Hall, was included in the sale of the Benyon lands in Essex and bought by Clayhall Park Estates, Ltd. (fn. 129) After the passage of the Green Belt (London and Home Counties) Act in 1938, the company sold the estate in 1939 to the present owner, Essex county council. (fn. 130)
Franks manor-house is of two storeys. Its two 15th-century wings extend west and north; in the former the hall originally rose the whole height of the house. An east wing with two gables was added in the 17th century, and a single-storey addition along the east front was made probably in the early 19th century. (fn. 131)
Until the 19th century Great Warley was an entirely agricultural parish. In 1086 the two manors contained woodland enough to feed 350 swine. (fn. 132) Then, as later, the woodland probably lay in the north and west of the parish. The manor of Warley (Abbess) had 150 sheep. Most of them were probably folded on the manor's marshland pastures, said to be sufficient for 100 sheep. The location of these pastures is not known; they may have been at Corringham, where there was later a detached part of Little Warley. (fn. 133) The two manors together had 12½ plough-teams in 1086, compared with 13 in 1066.
In the south-west of the parish the manor of Warley Franks had lost its woods by the 13th century: in 1285 320 a. out of a total of 342 a. were arable. (fn. 134) The field names of the manor in 1610 suggest the same predominance of arable over pasture, and the size of the fields hints at the possibility of an open-field system: Hither North Field (47 a.), Hither and Further East field (jointly 54 a.), and Collenowres and Further Collenowres (jointly 48 a.) can be equated with fields on the tithe map of 1838 lying north, east, and south-east of Franks manor-house. (fn. 135) Eastwards the manor of Great Warley maintained in 1545 a more evenly mixed acreage of heath, wood, arable, and meadow and pasture. (fn. 136) In the late 17th century squatters apparently built on the common waste; in 1670 five named cottagers (tuguriani) were said to be without right of pasture. (fn. 137) A statement in 1701 of the customs of the manor emphasized the importance of the woodland and waste. Holly, gorse, and juniper belonged equally to the lord and tenants, but tenants might claim herbage in the woods only in areas where the trees had at least seven years growth. The only other custom then stated was the lord's duty to keep a bull and a boar for the tenants' use. (fn. 138) The common waste lay in the manor of Great Warley, extending into Little Warley manor. In 1805 116 a. in the two manors were sold for the barracks. The remaining 172 a., of which 160 a. were in Great Warley, were inclosed in 1843. (fn. 139)
In 1838 Great Warley contained 1,340 a. arable, 1,025 a. pasture, and 210 a. woodland. (fn. 140) There were 24 properties with more than 10 a., belonging to 16 owners and farmed in 18 units. The five largest estates contained 596 a., 330 a., 319 a., 242 a., and 203 a. Three more had between 147 a. and 128 a., and the 8 smallest between 71 a. and 11 a.
Hops were grown at the rectory c. 1850, but as elsewhere in Essex their cultivation had died out later in the century. (fn. 141) In the 1950s they were reintroduced at Codham Hall, which was then said to be the only farm in the county growing them. (fn. 142) Their cultivation was abandoned, however, before 1970. (fn. 143) In 1876 wheat, barley, beans, and peas were said to be widely grown in the parish. (fn. 144)
In 1916 there were 1,009 a. arable and 1,471 a. pasture, in 14 farms, of which 6 had between 200 a. and 500 a., 2 between 100 a. and 200 a., 5 between 50 a. and 100 a., and one 15 a. (fn. 145)
In 1948 Mr. Deaner established a piggery on his smallholding in Warley Street, south of Codham Lane. In 1962, when his son joined him in business, he abandoned the raising of pigs and founded Warley Rose Gardens, which in 1976 covered 22 a. (fn. 146)
In 1903 Ilford Ltd., manufacturers of photographic dry-plates, extended their operations, bringing light industry to Great Warley. The company bought 14 a. south of Woodman Road and planned to provide employment for 350. (fn. 147) The works were enlarged in later years, and in the mid 1920s this branch became Selo Ltd. (fn. 148) In 1969 Ilford Ltd. became a subsidiary of Ciba, the Swiss chemical company, which in 1970 joined J. R. Geigy S.A. to form Ciba-Geigy Ltd. The company decided to move from Ilford in 1973. Its engineering centre was already at Warley; the adjoining site of the former Christ Church school on Warley Hill was bought in 1974; and in 1975 Ilford's research laboratory opened there. (fn. 149)
In 1373 the view of frankpledge for the manor of Warley Franks was held by the lord of the honor of Rayleigh, but all the profits of the view, except the common fine, belonged to the lord of the manor. (fn. 150) For the manor of Warley Abbess, later Great Warley, there are court rolls and court books for the periods 1483–1544 and 1651–1851. Courts leet were held until the later 17th century, and constables were appointed by the court as late as 1699. (fn. 151)
The parish records include vestry minutes (1736–1855), churchwardens' accounts (1792–1844), and overseers' rates (1827–33) and accounts (1800–48). (fn. 152) The vestry normally met four or five times a year, but more often in times of distress: from 1793 to 1820 there were never fewer than six meetings a year, and usually eight or nine. The place of meeting, when specified, was the church, but in 1785 the vestry agreed to meet alternately at the Thatchers and the Magpie public houses, spending each time 5s. on the overseer's account. The rector or curate normally took the chair when present. Attendance at meetings was occasionally as high as ten, but five or six was a more usual number in the 18th century and three or four in the 19th century. Those who attended were the substantial farmers of the parish, and the parish offices revolved among them.
There were two churchwardens throughout the period. In 1755 one was elected by the parishioners, the other by the rector and parishioners jointly; the following year the same two men were wardens, but the first was stated to be appointed 'by the sole authority of the rector'. Thereafter there was always a rector's warden. Between 1736 and 1749 the vestry nominated two overseers, but after 1749 submitted four names; the duties, however, were usually performed by a single overseer. In 1761–2 Mrs. Hannah Mead was overseer, with William Mead as her deputy. Overseers normally held office for a single year, but John Forster was overseer from 1816 to 1821, and Thomas W. Mayhew held the office from 1822 to 1836, when Great Warley joined the Romford union. (fn. 153) Both were salaried. One or two constables were nominated by the vestry in most years up to 1808, but only one seems to have acted. There were also two surveyors of the highways. All the parish officers collected rates, and the vestry minutes until 1781 record summaries of their accounts.
Statute labour on the highways continued in Great Warley in the 18th and 19th centuries. In 1756 composition for services was authorized, but the provision of substitutes was forbidden. In 1834 half the highway duty was to be performed, and half paid by composition; two-thirds of the duty was demanded in 1843: for every £50 rateable value, six days duty with a cart and two horses was required. No one rated at less than £50 might offer less than three days duty.
The rateable value of the parish was about £1,200 in 1737 and £1,811 in 1801. It rose to £2,446 in 1817, just over £3,000 in 1839, and £3,664 in 1842. Expenditure by the overseer of the poor averaged about £60 a year in the four years 1736–40, but in the period 1740–73 was about £110 a year, with more being spent in the last decade than earlier. For the rest of the 18th century the only series of figures available gives the rates voted to the overseer: he appears to have needed about £160 yearly from 1773 to 1786 but only about half that amount from 1786 to 1793. From 1793 the sums needed rose rapidly. In 1800–1 the overseer spent £878, and in the following year £675; for the years 1802–6 his expenditure averaged £432, and for 1816–30 £512. Thereafter expenditure dropped.
In the mid 18th century Great Warley had few poor. Only eight inhabitants received regular weekly allowances in 1746, and only an occasional parish apprentice is named in the records: in 1743 the parish received £10 from an inhabitant who refused to take one. Outdoor relief was given; and the parish also had several poorhouses, including two made in 1757 by converting the former watch-house. By 1783 there was on Headley common a parish workhouse, which seems to have accommodated about 20. In that year Little Warley first rented space in the workhouse; (fn. 154) Upminster also used it in the years 1784–6, as did Hutton in 1806. (fn. 155) In 1829 it was reckoned unsuitable for future use, and the vestry therefore decided to join nine parishes in Ongar hundred in forming, under Gilbert's Act, a poor-law union with a workhouse at Stanford Rivers. (fn. 156) The parish workhouse and 7 poorhouses were sold for £240 in 1830. (fn. 157) From 1831 to 1836 Great Warley kept about 10. paupers in the workhouse at Stanford Rivers.
A parish doctor was employed in 1758, and in 1785 it was agreed that the poor might be inoculated at parish expense. No parish doctor is recorded between 1764 and 1800. In 1804 Dr. Butler of Brentwood agreed to attend Great Warley's poor both in the parish and within five miles of Brentwood. In 1816–17 Dr. Richardson was retained as the parish doctor but other doctors received casual payments. Apart from the years 1822–5 Dr. Richardson continued to treat the parish poor until 1836, when Great Warley became part of Romford poor-law union.
The advowson of St. Mary's rectory descended with the manor of Warley Abbess (or Great Warley) until the death of Benjamin Gonson in 1600. (fn. 158) For a further sixty years it apparently belonged to the descendants of his sister Bennett, who married Thomas Wallenger of Chelmsford: John Staresmore, rector 1626–36, was husband to Thomasine Wallenger, their daughter; their son Benjamin Wallenger was patron in 1636 and 1650; and the patron in 1660 was John Wells, presumably their son-in-law. (fn. 159) Henry Warner, however, who presented David Jenner to the rectory in 1678, has not been identified. (fn. 160)
Jenner at his resignation in 1687 owned the advowson, and at his death in 1692 he devised it to his widow Mary (d. 1702). (fn. 161) In 1694 and 1698 she presented to the rectory her second and third husbands, and at her death her only child Seth Wigmore inherited the advowson. From him it passed to the Brackenbury Fund and thence in 1718 to St. John's College, Cambridge. (fn. 162) In 1906 the college sold the advowson to Evelyn Heseltine (d. 1930), from whom it passed to family trustees. (fn. 163) In 1972 Great Warley was united with Childerditch, and the right of presentation to the united benefice vested alternately in the Heseltine trustees and the Martyrs Memorial Trust. (fn. 164)
The rectory was valued at 10 marks gross, 7 marks net, in 1254 and 1291, and at £14 in 1535. (fn. 165) It was worth about £120 c. 1740, £170 c. 1770, and £430 in 1800. (fn. 166) In 1837 the rectorial tithes were commuted for £523. (fn. 167) The leper hospital of Ilford, founded by Adeliza, abbess of Barking, c. 1140, received tithes from the manor of Warley Abbess worth 3 marks in 1254; in 1837 they were commuted for £90, paid to the marquess of Salisbury, master and patron of the hospital. (fn. 168) In 1254 Prittlewell priory received tithes worth 3 marks from the demesne of Geoffrey Scoland (i.e. the manor of Warley Franks); they had been granted by Turold. (fn. 169) In 1513 the priory granted them and a house in the parish to the rector for £1 a year. (fn. 170) About 1700 and in 1810 this rent was being paid to the Crown. (fn. 171)
There was a rectory house and 6 a. of glebe in the early 17th century. (fn. 172) The glebe was said to be 7 a. in 1650 and 10 a. in 1837. (fn. 173) In 1777 the rectory house lay ½ mile north of the church in Great Warley Street. (fn. 174) It was rebuilt by Edmund Latter, rector 1805–26, and continually enlarged throughout his incumbency by Hastings Robinson, rector 1827–66. (fn. 175) It ceased to be used as the rectory c. 1892, was sold in 1903, and after passing through various hands was demolished in the 1960s to make way for a haulier's depot. (fn. 176) A tithe barn, apparently situated behind the rectory in 1838, was demolished in 1902. (fn. 177)
In 1889 Dr. H. Roberson Bailey, rector 1866–1900, commissioned from J. L. Pearson, the architect of Truro cathedral, a large house in Jacobean style, later named Fairstead. It stands in 7 acres a mile north of the old rectory in Great Warley Street. It was Bailey's personal property, and he apparently lived there until his death in 1900. (fn. 178) In 1904 a new rectory, of red brick, was built immediately south of Fairstead and almost opposite the new church. (fn. 179) It was designed by (Sir) E. Guy Dawber, P.R.I.B.A. (fn. 180)
William Fulke, rector 1571–89, Master of Pembroke Hall, Cambridge, from 1578, was presented to Great Warley through the influence of Robert Dudley, earl of Leicester, to whom he was chaplain. (fn. 181) He was an absentee, but his successor, John Fabian, rector 1589–1626, lived in the parish. (fn. 182) In 1597 Fabian was suspended for playing 'a lord of misrule or Christmas lord among certain yongelings' in Kelvedon. (fn. 183) From his time most rectors apparently resided in the parish, but after 1723 there was usually an assistant curate as well. (fn. 184) In 1768 the curate was paid £40 a year. (fn. 185) David Jenner, rector 1678–87, a royal chaplain, and Henry Cardell, rector 1708–43, were former fellows of Cambridge colleges, and while St. John's College, Cambridge, owned the advowson, former fellows of the college occupied the rectory from 1743 to 1900. (fn. 186)
The old church of ST. MARY stood immediately south of Great Warley Hall. It consisted of a brick chancel, nave, and west tower, and a wooden south porch. (fn. 187) At some time before 1730 the tower, which then held five bells, was wrecked by lightning. It was replaced by a shingled and tile-capped tower set upon the old tower base. It held three bells. In 1681 the arms of the Commonwealth were still visible on the walls. (fn. 188) Framed copies of the commandments, Lord's Prayer, and Creed were hung in 1744, and together with the King's arms were still in place in 1810. Repairs to the church walls and tower were carried out in 1803. In 1833 a west gallery was built by Mrs. Robinson, the rector's wife; there was already a north gallery. In 1858–60 the church was remodelled, to the designs of S. S. Teulon, at a total cost of £1,000. (fn. 189) The chancel was rebuilt in yellow brick with stone dressings, a north vestry was added, and the west tower reconstructed in red brick. Most of the church fittings were replaced, new open pews were provided, and a new west gallery, apparently reached by an outside stairway on the south of the tower, was erected. (fn. 190)
The church ceased to be used for services other than funerals c. 1892, the year in which a wooden mission church seating 140 was licensed for use. The mission church stood in the grounds of Fairstead and seems to have been used for about ten years. (fn. 191) In 1923 the old church had recently been pulled down; the tower was still standing in 1957, but had fallen by 1975. (fn. 192)
In 1904 a new church of ST. MARY THE VIRGIN formally replaced old St. Mary's as the parish church. (fn. 193) It stands west of Great Warley Street about a mile north of the old church. The site was given in 1902 by Evelyn Heseltine and enlarged by further gifts from him in 1904 and 1927. (fn. 194) The church was also his gift, in memory of his brother Arnold Heseltine (1852–97), and was built in Art Nouveau style to the designs of Charles Harrison Townsend and (Sir) William Reynolds-Stephens. (fn. 195) It consists of an eastern apse with north vestry and a tunnel-vaulted nave with south chapel and south porch. A small shingled bell-turret surmounts the nave roof towards the west. Harrison Townsend and Reynolds-Stephens designed the fittings, which with their natural forms were intended to symbolize the Resurrection. Only the windows are not original. They now commemorate, among others, Evelyn Heseltine, his son-in-law, and two grandsons, and most replace the first windows by Heywood Sumner, blown out in 1940. (fn. 196) In 1975 the windows were damaged by vandals more than once. (fn. 197) In the south chapel against the east wall there stands the painted alabaster bust of Giles Fleming (d. 1633), originally part of a monument in the chancel of old St. Mary's. (fn. 198)
The church plate includes a cup with cover and a paten of 1700; a cup and cover and alms-dish of 1749, and two flagons of 1872 and 1904, all of silver. There is also a pewter platter, almost certainly of 1678. (fn. 199)
In 1851 the parish church was reported to be 'totally inadequate' for the needs of the growing parish. (fn. 200) A licensed room on Sunday mornings probably housed the overflow from the Sunday school. (fn. 201) In 1862 Sarah Clay, the rector's sister-in-law, gave £1,000 to endow a new church. (fn. 202) CHRIST CHURCH, Warley, was opened in 1855; it was built by subscription, the rector contributing largely, on a site given by the East India Company, then owners of Warley camp in Little Warley, beside the married soldiers' quarters on Warley Hill. (fn. 203) In the same year a new parish was formed from parts of South Weald, Shenfield, and Great Warley. (fn. 204) In 1956 the NE. corner of the parish was transferred to Ingrave. (fn. 205) The advowson of the vicarage was vested in trustees, always including members of the Clay family, until 1925 when it was transferred to the bishop. (fn. 206) The vicarage was worth £135 a year in 1863, derived chiefly from Miss Clay's endowment, (fn. 207) but supplemented by an allotment of tithe rent-charges in 1856 (fn. 208) and a grant of £33 a year from the Ecclesiastical Commissioners in 1861. (fn. 209) A vicarage house was built south of the church in 1853. It was sold in 1970, when a new house was provided in Mount Crescent. (fn. 210)
Christ Church, built of brick with stone dressings in Early English style to the designs of S. S. Teulon, originally comprised apse, with small north vestry, nave, south porch, and battlemented west tower with pinnacles; a south aisle was added in 1877. (fn. 211) In 1891 the apse was replaced by a chancel with an arcade of two bays on the north side opening into a chancel aisle forming a choir vestry and organ chamber. (fn. 212) In 1956 the west gallery was taken down and its door way replaced by a window. (fn. 213) A new choir vestry, at the west of the south aisle, was formed in 1960. (fn. 214)
The church plate includes a silver cup dated 1845, and paten and flagon dated 1850, all by Barnard and the gift of Mrs. Robinson in 1854; a matching silver cup is dated 1882. (fn. 215) The original organ was sold in 1915; its replacement, installed in 1916, was rebuilt in 1972. (fn. 216)
The church of THE HOLY CROSS AND ALL SAINTS, Warley, is in Warley Hill, on the South Weald side of the parish boundary. It was built in 1881 by Revd. J. Kyne of Brentwood with money given by Helen Tasker, Countess Tasker, of Middleton Hall, and by Mr. Campbell, who also gave the site. (fn. 217) The church, in the Gothic style, originally comprised chancel, nave, south aisle, and small west turret. A second aisle was added in 1888, the gift of the Willmott family of Warley Place. (fn. 218)
In 1893, at the request and cost of Mrs. Willmott, Sisters of Mercy from Brentwood rented a small house as a convent and opened a school; they seem to have left c. 1911. (fn. 219) Marillac hospital was founded in 1921, when the Sisters of Charity of St. Vincent de Paul bought Warley House as a sanatorium for children and nuns with tuberculosis. (fn. 220) It later became a hospital for the severely disabled, and in 1963 was transferred to the former officers' mess building in Eagle Way. (fn. 221)
The house of Charles Halt was licensed for Presbyterian worship in 1672. (fn. 222) Five nonconformists were enumerated in the parish in 1676. (fn. 223) In 1791 the house of John Cowell was registered for Baptist worship by Thomas Strachan, minister of Romford Independent church. (fn. 224) By 1810 the number of dissenters at Great Warley was said to be diminishing and the meeting-house was disused. (fn. 225)
Warley Primitive Methodist church originated in 1898, when a Free Baptist church in Cemetery (now Lorne) Road was registered for worship. (fn. 226) That church, which lay on the South Weald side of the Great Warley boundary, was originally sponsored by Brentwood and District Free Church council, but it was later taken over by the Primitive Methodists, and in 1912 was placed in Chelmsford circuit. (fn. 227) In 1916 a new church was built on the other side of Warley Hill. It was later transferred to the Grays and Romford circuit. (fn. 228) It was closed and sold in 1935, when the members united with Brentwood (ex-Wesleyan) Methodist church, also in Warley Hill. (fn. 229) The original building in Lorne Road still existed, as a factory, in 1976. (fn. 230)
Great Warley Church of England primary school, Bird Lane, also called the Lower Warley school. In 1807 there were three small dayschools in the parish with a total of about 38 children, and an Anglican Sunday school, founded in 1806, with 46. (fn. 231) The three day-schools had a total of 45 pupils in 1819 (fn. 232) and 54 in 1833. (fn. 233) In 1843 the rector and subscribers who had been supporting these schools built a permanent school with the aid of a government grant, on a site in Bird Lane given by Charles Winn, Lord Headley (d. 1877), and John Cross. (fn. 234) In 1846–7, when there were 71 pupils, the school was supported by subscriptions, school pence, and grants from the National Society. (fn. 235) A teacher's house was added in 1862 (fn. 236) and the school was enlarged in 1870 for 86 children. (fn. 237) Annual government grants were received from 1871. (fn. 238) This was always a small school, serving the rural end of the parish. (fn. 239) The school was reorganized in 1936 for juniors and infants. (fn. 240) It was granted Controlled status in 1952, (fn. 241) and was closed in 1968. (fn. 242)
Christ Church Church of England, later county primary, school, Warley Hill, also known as Warley Upper school, was built by subscription in 1854–5, on a site, next to the church, given by the East India Company. (fn. 243) A teacher's house was added in 1859–60 and an infants classroom in 1868. (fn. 244) The school received annual government grants from 1870. (fn. 245) In 1872 accommodation was needed for 150 more children, including 79 from South Weald and Shenfield. An infants school was established in 1875 in Crescent Road, Warley, in connexion with Christ Church but maintained by South Weald parish in which it stood. (fn. 246) Christ Church school was enlarged by public subscription in 1892, and again in 1910, for 270 children. (fn. 247) In 1911 it was a mixed school with 250 children under 6 teachers. (fn. 248) It was reorganized in 1936 for mixed juniors and infants, (fn. 249) and was granted Aided status in 1951. (fn. 250) It was taken over by the county council in 1963 and was subsequently transferred to new buildings in Essex Way (1966) and Chindits Lane (1972). (fn. 251) The old school was demolished in 1975. Hastings Robinson, rector 1827–66, by will proved in 1866, left £200 stock in trust to provide annual entertainment and prizes for the children of the school. Under a Chancery order of 1892 the legacy was paid to the trustees. In 1949 the capital fund was £350 stock. (fn. 252) In 1975 the income was being used by the rector for the benefit of children in Great Warley parish. (fn. 253)
Warley county infants school, Essex Way, was opened in 1966 for 240, and Warley county junior school, Chindits Lane, in 1972 for 320. (fn. 254) Holy Cross and All Saints Roman Catholic school, Warley Hill, was opened c. 1920 in a hut behind the church. It was closed c. 1954, when the children were transferred to St. Helen's school, Brentwood. (fn. 255)
Five private schools in Great Warley are listed in 19th-century directories. Of these, a 'ladies' school kept by Susannah Taylor had opened by 1863 and survived until at least 1902. There was a private school in Warley Hill in the 1930s. (fn. 256)
CHARITIES FOR THE POOR.
Hastings Robinson, rector 1827–66, by his will proved in 1866, gave funds to endow two annual governorships of the London Hospital for the admission to the hospital of the sick of St. Mary's parish. (fn. 257) Admission by governorship was abolished in 1896. (fn. 258) In 1951 a Scheme provided that the income from £350 stock belonging to the charity should be managed as two separate charities for the sick of St. Mary's and Christ Church parishes. (fn. 259) In 1975 the income was being distributed in cash by the rector of St. Mary's. (fn. 260)