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St Andrew, Boreham, Essex

(51°45′27″N, 0°32′34″E)
TL 756 096
pre-1974 traditional (England and Wales) Essex
now Essex
medieval London
now Chelmsford
medieval St Andrew
now St Andrew
  • Ann Hilder
  • Ron Baxter
07 December 2013 (RB)

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Feature Sets

Boreham is a village in central Essex, 4 miles NE of Chelmsford, on the S side of the A12. The village is set in mainly arable farmland, and has expanded since the 1970s to a significant size. The church, of flint rubble with some ironstone and dreesings of clunch and Roman brick, is on the southern edge of the village and consists of a nave with a central tower and chancel. It was built in the late-11thc or 12thc, and the upper part of the tower was added c.1200. In the early 13thc the nave was rebuilt and aisles added. Towards the end of the 13thc the 2 E bays of the S aisle were widened to form a chapel, and in the 15thc the N aisle was widened. The chancel was rebuilt in the 14thc, and the Sussex Chapel added on the S side in 1585 by Thomas Radcliffe, the then Earl. A spectacular 5-stage timber framed porch that provides a covered way from the main road to the S nave doorway, W of the aisle, was added in the 15thc., and partlt rebuilt in white brick in the mid-19thc. A modern annexe has been added on the N side of the chancel and a vestry on the S side of the nave at the W end. The church was restored by Chancellor between 1868 and 1912. The only surviving Romanesque sculpture is in the windows of the 3-storey central tower. Many of them are modern replacements, but the four bell-openings of the third storey are all medieval, together with the 1st and 2nd storey windows on the N side and the 1st storey window on the S side. Both 1st storey windows are plain lancets, and are therefore not described in detail here.


In 1066 a manor of 8 hides was held by 14 freemen in 1066. It was appropriated by Engelric, but by 1086 it was held by Lambert from Count Eustace. There was woodland there for 10 pigs, 54 acres of meadow and a mill. A second manor of half a hide was held by Eskil in 1066 and William de Warenne in demesne in 1086. In addition to the ploughland there was woodland for 20 pigs and 5 actes of meadow. Finally amanor of 1 hide was held by Thorkil in 1066 and by Osbern from Swein in 1086. This manor had 8 acres of meadow and no woodland.


Exterior Features



The bell-opening capitals are described as plain, because there is no sign of decoration. There are considerable signs of wear, however, and decoration might well have been lost.


J. Bettley and N. Pevsner, The Buildings of England. Essex, New Haven and London 2007, 153-54.

J. Cooper, The Church Dedications and Saints’ Cults of Medieval Essex, Lancaster 2011, 114.

English Heritage Listed Building 112426.

N. Pevsner, The Buildings of England. Essex, Harmondsworth 1954, 81-82.

RCHME, An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in Essex, Volume 2: Central and South West (1921), 22-27.