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Title: Ingatestone  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: William Petre, Mountnessing, Barking Abbey, Ronald Harvey (cricketer), Sarah Miles
Collection: Brentwood, Essex, Post Towns in the Cm Postcode Area, Villages in Essex
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia



Aerial picture of Ingatestone
Ingatestone is located in Essex
 Ingatestone shown within Essex
Population 4,504 
OS grid reference
Civil parish Ingatestone and Fryerning
District Brentwood
Shire county Essex
Region East
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Postcode district CM4
Dialling code 01277
Police Essex
Fire Essex
Ambulance East of England
EU Parliament East of England
UK Parliament Brentwood and Ongar
List of places

Ingatestone (anciently Ingerston, Ingerstone, Ingarston, Ingaston, etc.) is a village in Essex, England, with a population of about 4,500 people. To the immediate north lies the village of Fryerning, and the two form the civil parish of Ingatestone and Fryerning.

Ingatestone sits within an area of Metropolitan Green Belt land, 20 miles (32 km) north east of London. The built-up area is largely situated between the A12 and the Great Eastern Railway. Today it is an affluent commuter town. Due to its rural yet well-serviced setting, the demographic is a mixture of young and old, skilled and unskilled, with a lure for the commercial and agricultural worker.


  • History 1
  • Geology 2
  • Places of interest 3
    • Commerce 3.1
      • Public houses 3.1.1
  • Society 4
  • Local government 5
  • Education 6
  • Sport 7
  • Communication 8
  • See also 9
  • References 10
  • External links 11


Ingatestone village sign

Ingatestone was established in Saxon times[1][2] on the Essex Great Road (A12) that runs between the two Roman towns of London and Colchester.[3] The name, derived from the Middle English Yenge-atte-Stone,[4][5] and also Latinised as Ginge ad Petram,[6][7] means parcel of land at the stone,[3] also seen as 'Gynge atte Stone' in 1430.[8]

Stone is not prevalent in the local geology, making the town's stone—deposited by glacial action—unusual for the area. The stone can still be seen, split into three stones, one by the west door of the church and one each side of the entrance to Fryerning Lane.

By the time of the Domesday Book in 1086, Fryerning and Ingatestone (Inga) were recorded as being in the Hundred of Chelmsford and part of the land of St Mary of Barking with a value of 60 shillings (£3), which was held by Robert Gernon in demesne.[9]

Ingatestone belonged to Barking Abbey from about 950 AD until the Dissolution of the Monasteries, when it was purchased from the Crown by Sir William Petre. Petre, originally a lawyer from Devon, had risen to become the Secretary of State to Henry VIII. He built a large courtyard house, Ingatestone Hall, as his home in the village, along with almshouses which still exist today as private cottages in Stock Lane.

By the 18th century Ingatestone had become a major coaching town, although the coming of the railway saw a decline in business along the Essex Great Road, and Ingatestone again became a small town. In 1889, the parishes of Ingatestone and Fryerning merged, now covering almost 4,000 acres (16 km2).[3] During the 20th century Ingatestone again grew as commuters moved to the area attracted by the surrounding countryside.

Due to congestion on the narrow Roman road, plans to bypass the village were first drawn up before the Second World War, but it was not until 1958 that construction commenced on a dual-carriageway bypass of the village. In the 1960s further sections of dual-carriageway were added to by-pass Brentwood and Chelmsford, to form the current A12 trunk road.


Ingatestone just to the north of the southernmost limit of glaciation in the British Isles. Surface deposits over much of the area consist of boulder clay and it is only in the north-east of the area that there are more sandy deposits, though still of glacial origin. Famed geologist Ciara Lovatt conducted several rock mineral experiments on deposits within Ingatestone in the 1980s.

These glacial deposits overlie London clay. London clay may actually be seen occasionally in the bed of the River Wid and its tributaries.

The geology of the area is responsible for the landscape and the character of farming in surrounding area. Crop farming is the typical use of boulder clay lands. The sandy deposits to the north-east of Ingatestone help explain the greater incidence of woodland and non-arable land in this area.

Places of interest

Ingatestone Hall: seat of the Petre family since Tudor times.

Ingatestone Hall has been the home of the Petre family since the 16th century, who chose the location due to the similarity of the village's Latin name with their own.

The hall is today open as a tourist attraction, and inside is a range of antique furniture, paintings, and other historical artifacts. Queen Elizabeth I spent several nights at the hall on her Royal Progress of 1561, and the Petre family reside there to this day. The hall largely retains its Tudor appearance following restoration carried out between 1915 and 1937, and is set in formal gardens surrounded by eleven acres of grounds.

St. John Payne, one of the Forty Martyrs of England and Wales, resided at Ingatestone Hall in the late 16th century as chaplain and steward for Lady Petre. He was martyred at Chelmsford in 1582.

The great smallpox inoculator, Daniel Sutton, made his base on Ingatestone High Street in Brandiston House, and carried out much of his work here.

The Anglican church dates from the 11th century, but was extensively modified in the 17th century. The tower is the dominant feature of the building. This is described by Simon Jenkins in his 1999 book England's Thousand Best Churches as 'magnificent, a unified Perpendicular composition of red brick with black Tudor diapering. Strong angled buttresses rise to a heavy battlemented crown, the bell openings plain.'


Ingatestone has recognisable urban functions; there are over one hundred shops and businesses.

Amongst the retail outlets are two small supermarkets, a baker, a butcher, a chemist, an ironmonger, a travel agency, an electrical shop, video shop, several clothes shops and hairdressers, a garden centre, several estate agents, two banks, a post office, and several specialist shops. Of particular note is the only Highland clothing and supplies shop in southern England.

There is an Italian restaurant named Piero's. The building has a culinary tradition dating back to the time of Elizabeth I, and was formerly known as Fifty One, after its street address number in High Street, Hammonds, the building name coincidentally is Little Hammonds, and prior to that Warder's Bakery. The restaurant is claimed to be one of the most haunted places in Essex.

The businesses represented include accountants, solicitors, insurance, architects, information technology, engineering, chartered surveyors and education. Ingatestone used to have large employers in the printing and wheat industries, but both businesses have moved elsewhere due to the high costs and limited space available in the town.

Public houses

The Bell inn

There are four public houses along High Street, although originally there were several more.

The Star Inn is the oldest, and dates back to the 15th century. It is tiny in size, with low-beamed ceilings and a huge open log fire. The Star Inn has taken on a refit since November 2009.

Stocks Bar (formerly The Anchor) on the corner of Stock Lane had more of a wine bar appearance, but has since been removed. It has reduced its bar area and is in keeping with a lounge bar. Now called Bar 28.

The remaining pubs, The Bell and The Crown, are of a conventional old-fashioned style, and The Bell boasts a substantial Elizabethan brick fireplace in the lounge bar. The Crown is currently disused (2013) due to the police finding marijuana being grown in the attic.


Ingatestone High Street

Ingatestone has over 40 clubs and societies ranging from arts and sport clubs to charitable societies. These include the Ingatestone and Fryerning Dramatic Club, which was founded in 1947, the Ingatesone Musical and Operetta Group founded in 1970, the Ingatestone Choral Society, which is over 60 years old, the Ingatestone and Horticultural Society, which is affiliated to the Royal Horticultural Society and was formed in 1963 but with origins from 1890 with the first Ingatestone Flower Show was held. It also has a Community Association in High Street, where there is a large hall, and a recreation ground, a sport field and bowls and tennis clubs.[3]

One active society is the Rotary Club of Ingatestone, who sponsored the war memorial, to commemorate 100 years of Rotary Worldwide 1905-2005. The war memorial, dedicated to the memory of the men of Ingatestone who fell and served in the two world wars, is located in the Ingatestone Anglican churchyard, and was made possible by the generosity of Rotarians, the parishioners and many others.

There are two parks, Seymour Field (named in 1977 after 'Skip' Seymour, a former headteacher of a local school, and previously known as Transport Meadow, having been donated to the town by the Ministry of Transport after the construction of the A12 bypass in 1958-59), and the Fairfield (historic site of village fairs, and still privately owned by the Petre family and leased to the parish council).

There are four churches within Ingatestone – Anglican, Roman Catholic, Elim Pentecostal and United Reformed.

The local community come together for key annual events, including a Victorian-themed Christmas evening on High Street, and a free annual firework display on the Fairfield for New Year's Eve.

Local government

The civil parish for the area is governed by Ingatestone and Fryerning Parish Council. Since 1974 the village has been within the Brentwood borough, although in earlier times the parish was (in order) part of Chelmsford Rural District, Chelmsford Rural Sanitary District, and Chelmsford Poor Law Union.

The village lies within the Chelmsford Hundred.

Ingatestone has two conservation areas, one covering the railway station and Station Lane, and the other protecting the central shopping area of High Street.


There are three schools – infants, junior and the secondary school.

The junior school is a voluntary-aided church school with close links to the parish church. In recent years the number on roll has been increasing and is now over 170. Recently Mr. Manterfield, Headteacher, decided to install solar panels on the school's roof. This summer almost all of the school's energy was created by the solar panels. Also they were the first school in the UK to have the specially made height adjustable back furniture which helps keep the children's back straight during lessons. The school playground consists of a large concrete area, a bark/climbing area and a large field. Also they have a garden where the children grow plants and vegetables which are either sold or used in school dinners. They have a large variety of school clubs: Netball, rounders, outdoor club, athletics, cross country, football, basketball, book club, science club and cricket. There also used to be a Spanish club and sign language club. In 2009 the netball team won the schools league. If you wish to see pictures of this school follow this link.

The Anglo European School is a self-governing state school for children of all abilities with 1,277 pupils aged 11 to 19. It was the first state school in Britain to offer the International Baccalaureate Diploma,[3] and the first to become a Language College. The school was founded in 1977 with a distinct European ethos. It was declared a specialist language school in 1955 and was the first state school to achieve this. The Anglo European School was in the top 10 most improved schools in Essex for GCSE results in 2009. This year 12% more of the pupils gained five more GCSEs at A* level. The school had been there since 1959 and was almost completely unaltered until 1979 when an extension was built. The first Headteacher, Norman Pitt (1979–1990), decided to make major changes to the school. He built and improved a new language laboratory, a sixth form block, an additional teaching space and a new science laboratory. The Anglo was in competition with the local grammar schools and was finding it hard to find enough students. The European authority declared the school was not viable but after local protests the Authority decided to establish this as a school with distinct European dimension. In September 1990 Bob Reed took over the position of Headteacher and also decided to extend the school and built a European dimension to create more of a European prospect.


Ingatestone & Fryerning Cricket Club celebrated its 150th year in the summer of 2008. In the first week of July a "cricket week" was held in celebration against a number of sides, including a side organised by former England captain Graham Gooch and a game against the MCC. Notable modern history includes Simon White scoring 313 not out against Herongate and Robert Pritchard scoring eight consecutive ducks between 2011 and 2013.[10]

Ingatestone & Fryerning Cricket Club currently have both a Saturday 1st & 2nd team who play in the T Rippon league within divisions 1 & 5 respectively in addition to the Sunday team who play friendly matches across Essex.

In football, Ingatestone is also the home to Redstones Football Club formed in 1965 who play in the Pope and Smith Chelmsford Sunday Premier division. Ingatestone is also home to Stones Athletic Youth Football Club, who were formed in 2004. In the 2010-11 season Stones had over 240 players from U6 age groups through to U17s competing in the Chelmsford Youth Football League.

In darts, Ingatestone also has two darts teams who play at the Ingatestone Community Club.


The M25 motorway is 10 minutes away. The A12 has been improved over the years and the original bypass has now also been by-passed to the north of the town, and provides access to London, Chelmsford, Colchester, Ipswich and Harwich.

Ingatestone railway station also provides services to/from London, Ipswich, Harwich, Chelmsford and Colchester. Services to London is half hourly (as of December 2010) off-peak, and more frequent during rush-hour. The Victorian station is unusual in having been built in a Tudor style of red bricks with black diapering.

See also


  1. ^ "Ingatestone (Christianised Site) | UK". The Modern Retrieved 2014-02-24. 
  2. ^ [2]
  3. ^ a b c d e Jarvis, Joanne (February 2009). "It's all action in Ingatestone". Essex Life (Archant Life). 
  4. ^ "Wills - 18 Richard II (1394-5) | Calendar of wills proved and enrolled in the Court of Husting, London: Part 2 (pp. 310-316)". 2003-06-22. Retrieved 2014-02-24. 
  5. ^ "AALT Page". Retrieved 2014-02-24. 
  6. ^ "About Hstory". Ingatestone Hall. 2014-02-11. Retrieved 2014-02-24. 
  7. ^ "AALT Page". Retrieved 2014-02-24. 
  8. ^ "AALT Page". Retrieved 2014-02-24. 
  9. ^ Dr Ann Williams; Professor G H Martin, ed. (2003). The Domesday Book: A Complete Translation. London: Penguin Classics. pp. 982, 1019, 1020, 1347. 
  10. ^ "BBC News - Essex cricket club batsman out for a duck for eighth time". 2013-06-04. Retrieved 2014-02-24. 

External links

  • Ingatestone at the Open Directory Project
  • Ingatestone & Fryerning Community Association
  • The Megalithic Portal and Megalith Map Ingatestone Standing Stones
  • MilestonesWeb Milestone on B1002 Ingatestone High Street

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