In 1887 when the church was in the Diocese of St Albans, Priest
House was described in the records as a lately restored and improved
cottage. In 1944 it was left by Marianne Adams, widow and patron of
All Saints Church, to the Diocese of Chelmsford. The church now
leases it from the Diocese on a full repairing lease. In recent
years it received Grade 2 listing status.
The main room, with a kitchen at the rear, was built before 1560
probably 1500 the experts have decided. It was built by placing
substantial oak timbers on firm ground and using these as the
foundation of the house. These rotted away over many years which
necessitated the much needed restoration work that has been recently
Lily Mary Shipton. 1902-1989
The last occupant of
Photo by Edward Clack
Originally a one and a half storey building access to the roof space
is now through a trapdoor in the kitchen. Substantial changes were
made and another room added in the 19h century. Further changes to
windows and walls were made in the 19th and 20th centuries. Many of
the changes in the light of modern knowledge were ill advised.
Experts who have studied the building estimate that the floor of the
main room is now half a metre higher than when the house was first
Between 2008 and
2010 restoration and renovation work was carried out to the basic
structure of the building, the internal facilities and both interior
and exterior decor. This work has left the village with a building
for use by local societies and groups for many more years to come.
Heritage record images of the country's listed buildings
together with architectural details when known.
Click here for the Priest House