St. James Street, Castle Hedingham, Essex
Interior of St. Nicholas' Church
Castle Hedingham shown within Essex
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Castle Hedingham is a small village in northeast Essex, England, located four miles west of Halstead and 3 miles south-east of Great Yeldham in the Colne Valley on the ancient road from Colchester, Essex, to Cambridge.
It developed around Hedingham Castle, the ancestral seat of the de Veres, Earls of Oxford. The first earl, Aubrey de Vere III, finished the initial building of the keep and established a Benedictine nunnery, Castle Hedingham Priory, near the castle gates. Hugh de Vere, fourth earl of Oxford, purchased the right to hold a market in the town of the crown in the mid-13th century. He also founded a hospital just outside the gates of the castle around 1250.
The church of St. Nicholas is late Norman and Gothic, building having commenced around 1180. The fine double hammerbeam roof is attributed to Thomas Loveday, who was responsible for work on St John's College, Cambridge. Its Romanesque wheel window and cemetery cross are remnants of the Norman church.
The village was served by Sible and Castle Hedingham railway station which was opened by Colne Valley & Halstead Railway Company in 1867. The station closed in 1964 and was dismantled and rebuilt in 1974 on a new site to the north west of the village by the Colne Valley Railway Preservation Society.
- Aubrey de Vere, holder of the entire manor of Hedingham (later Castle Hedingham) in Domesday Book, 1086
- Aubrey de Vere, 1st Earl of Oxford, completed the stone keep at Hedingham
- Robert de Vere, 3rd Earl of Oxford, one of the 25 barons of Magna Carta
- Mark Catesby, English naturalist.
- Edward Bingham, Victorian potter whose Castle Hedingham Ware has become increasingly sought-after.
- Eric Ravilious, painter, book illustrator & wood engraver.
- Sir Fowell Buxton, 1st Baronet, Founder of the RSPCA, Member of Parliament and social reformer who was a leading abolitionist in the 19th century and took over William Wilberforce's leadership of the anti-slavery movement in the House of Commons when the latter retired.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Castle Hedingham.|
- SEAX Archaeology - Unlocking Essex's Past An in-depth essay about Castle Hedingham.
- Hedingham School
- A brief history of the village
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