Downham, Essex

Coordinates: 51°38′22″N 0°29′24″E / 51.6395°N 0.4901°E / 51.6395; 0.4901
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

St Margaret's
Downham is located in Essex
Location within Essex
Area3.36 sq mi (8.7 km2)
OS grid referenceTQ728960
Civil parish
Shire county
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Postcode districtCM11 1
Dialling code01268
AmbulanceEast of England
UK Parliament
List of places
51°38′22″N 0°29′24″E / 51.6395°N 0.4901°E / 51.6395; 0.4901

Downham is a small village and former civil parish, now in the parish of South Hanningfield, in the City of Chelmsford district, Essex, England. It is located approximately 7 miles (11 km) south of the county town of Chelmsford. The village is in the parliamentary constituency of Rayleigh; however, the closest two towns are Billericay, 3+12 miles (5.6 km) west-south-west, and Wickford, 2+14 miles (3.6 km) south-east.[1] In 1931, the parish had a population of 833.[2]


There is evidence of Roman remains in the village suggesting it was originally of early Saxon origin,[3] though it is not in the Domesday Book of 1086.[4] The parish church is dedicated to St Margaret. The oldest section of the church is a 1012 ft by 11 ft square redbrick tower from the late 15th or early 16th century.[5] However, Christians have been recorded as worshipping on the site for over one thousand years. The nave of the church was restored in the nineteenth century, using some material from an earlier 13th-century building, and the interior was refurbished in the 1970s after a fire in March 1977.[6] An ancient Field Maple lies north of the church. The village is home to Downham Hall, which was once the home of the De Beauvoir family, the building which currently stands is smaller than the original 17th-century mansion.[3]

On 1 October 1934 the parish was abolished and merged with South Hanningfield.[7]


Downham has approximately 200 households.[8] The village has an elevation of 188 feet (57 m) above sea level, and the parish had an area of 2,152 acres (3.36 sq mi).[4] The village is close to Hanningfield Reservoir, with its southwest bank being half a mile north from the village centre.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Google. "Downham, Essex" (Map). Google Maps. Google.
  2. ^ "Population statistics Downham AP/CP through time". A Vision of Britain through Time. Retrieved 25 December 2021.
  3. ^ a b Downham Village Website History
  4. ^ a b William White (of Sheffield.) (1848). History, Gazetteer, and Directory of the County of Essex White. author.
  5. ^ 'Downham', in An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in Essex, Volume 4, South east. London: His Majesty's Stationery Office. 1923. pp. 33–34. Retrieved 11 September 2018 – via British History Online.
  6. ^ History of Downham Church
  7. ^ "Relationships and changes Downham AP/CP through time". A Vision of Britain through Time. Retrieved 25 December 2021.
  8. ^ "Statistics". Archived from the original on 27 September 2007. Retrieved 14 March 2007.

External links[edit]

Media related to Downham, Essex at Wikimedia Commons