Showing posts from January, 2017

The Clacton Tower

There is good reason as to why you may never have heard of Clacton's tower, for it was never actually built. There were two plans however for different designs in the town's history around the same time, one of quite reasonable design and the other quite mad.

During the Victorian age, the concept of day and weekend trips to the seaside had taken the country by storm. The new railway lines and their relative affordability to the middle-class, had opened up a whole new industry in tourism all around the country. The English obsession with the seaside had been born, and with it the need and desire to develop many coastal towns up and down the country.

In that same time period, English towns began a rather eccentric habit of building great clock towers in town centres, many of which dominated the bustling seasides. Built examples of these can be seen in towns such as Margate, Herne Bay and Weymouth; often known as Jubilee Clocks, they were built largely as a celebration of Queen …

The Great Canfield Carvings

When I lived in nearby Hatfield Broad Oak, I once cycled past St Mary's church at Great Canfield and distinctly remember a feeling that there was something special about the place. I couldn't quite put my finger on what it was exactly at the time, but there was certainly a feeling of presence here.

Nestled in the quaint but remote Uttlesford Hundred in Essex, I'm sure few know of its existence, which makes its secrets all the more enticing. As per sod's law, after moving the thirty or so miles back to my hometown, I read online about the swastika engravings inside the church that are hidden inside the inner-porch area, and it certainly piqued my interest enough to take a trip back there in the car.

Now before I go into anymore detail about the carvings, I feel it is important to explain to the reader exactly what the swastika (or fylfot as it is known in England) represents. Events over the past century and subsequent post-war propaganda, have for obvious reasons tai…

The History Of Hadleigh Castle

As basically the only half decent historical monument in the Southend area, I've had a soft-spot for Hadleigh castle ever since I first visited it when I was about fourteen. From the site's elevated position you can see why this site has become a haven for budding photography enthusiasts, myself included. The remnants of Hadleigh Castle stands high overlooking the Thames estuary, with Southend visible to the east and Canvey Island and views of Kent sitting below it to the south.

Construction of the castle began between 1215 and 1230 under the supervision of Hubert De Burgh under permission of King John and Henry III. The remnants that are left today might not look much to behold, but it was meant to be one of London's most important defences against invasion (as in to prevent an invasion via the Thames estuary.) The original design was fairly standard for the time, a similar construction can still be seen in a more complete state in Wales at White Castle.

By 1239, De Burg…