St Margaret's Church, Wicken Bonhunt
Wicken Bonhunt shown within Essex
|OS grid reference|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|Post town||SAFFRON WALDEN|
|Ambulance||East of England|
|EU Parliament||East of England|
The village is on the B1038 (Buntingford) road and is midway between the larger villages of Newport and Clavering. The nearest town is Saffron Walden, some 5 miles (8 km) away. Stansted Airport is approximately 10 miles (16 km) away.
The village is mentioned in the Domesday Book as the manors of 'Wica' and 'Banhunta'. Just under two centuries later, in 1238, it is referred to in subsidy rolls as 'Wykes Bonhunte'. In the Domesday Book it is listed as having 23 households, comprising nine villagers, 11 smallholders and three slaves.
Signs of this early settlement include the 11th-century (or possibly 10th-century) former Chapel of St Helen in the grounds of Bonhunt Farm and close to a motorway flyover for the M11. It is believed to be one of the oldest surviving buildings in the east of England, and an annual service is held at the site.
A middle Saxon settlement of some size was excavated in the fields close to the Chapel in the 1970s, during the construction of the M11, with signs of an early settlement having been spotted in 1967 by a local archeologist. Excavations found evidence of around 30 structures, including a long room, and artefacts retrieved from the site led archeologists to believe this could have been a royal manor.
Parts of the Parish Church of St Margaret, including the chancel, are early 13th century, but there was extensive restoration and rebuilding in the 1850s in the 14th-century style. It is a Grade II* listed building. The interior includes a font that is thought to date from the 12th century. There are many other listed buildings in the village, most notably the Grade II*-listed, 16th-century Brick House.
Wicken Bonhunt's pub, formerly the Coach & Horses, reopened in 2012 as Ananta Thai Food Pub, also serving real ales.
Amid much local controversy, the former young people's residential study centre at Wicken House was sold to property developers in 2009, having closed a year earlier. In February 2012, a new village 'hub' community centre was opened at St Margaret's Church. The £200,000 project was assisted by grants from Essex County Council. It is designed as a new focal point for youth and community events, following the closure of Wicken House.
- "local history of wicken bonhunt village in essex". Recordinguttlesfordhistory.org.uk. Retrieved 2013-05-19.
- "Wicken [Bonhunt] | Domesday Book". Domesdaymap.co.uk. Retrieved 2013-05-19.
- Good Stuff IT Services. "Former Chapel of St Helen at Bonhunt Farm - Wicken Bonhunt - Essex - England". British Listed Buildings. Retrieved 2013-05-19.
- "Recorders report 2008". Recordinguttlesfordhistory.org.uk. 2009-04-23. Retrieved 2013-05-19.
- "Wicken Bonhunt | An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in Essex, Volume 1 (pp. 341-343)". British-history.ac.uk. 2003-06-22. Retrieved 2013-05-19.
- Good Stuff IT Services. "Church of St Margaret - Wicken Bonhunt - Essex - England". British Listed Buildings. Retrieved 2013-05-19.
- Good Stuff IT Services. "Listed Buildings in Wicken Bonhunt, Essex, England". British Listed Buildings. Retrieved 2013-05-19.
- Sergio Manini. "Essex village pub sold to new owners - News". Saffron Walden Reporter. Retrieved 2013-05-19.
- "Wicken House sold to developers - News". Saffron Walden Reporter. 2009-04-01. Retrieved 2013-05-19.
- "Community rejoices as £200k village church is revitalised - News". Saffron Walden Reporter. 2012-02-23. Retrieved 2013-05-19.
- Wicken Bonhunt village website
- Thai food pub website
- Archaeology collections and archives at Saffron Walden Museum
Media related to Wicken Bonhunt at Wikimedia Commons