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Layer Marney 1899 Kelly's Directory of Essex
Layer Marney is a village and parish, seated on a brook which falls into the Roman river, 5 miles from Kelvedon station on the main line of the Great Eastern railway and 7 south-west from Colchester, in the North Eastern division of the county, Winstree hundred, Lexden and Winstree petty sessional division and union, Colchester county court district, rural deanery of Coggeshall, archdeaconry of Colchester and dioceses of St Albans. The church of St. Mary the Virgin is a structure of brick, in the Perpendicular style, and consists of chancel, nave, north aisle, chapel, south porch and a western tower of brick containing 3 bells; the whole edifice, including the porches and tower, is embattled: the eastern end of the north aisle constitutes the Marney chapel, which, with the chancel, was entirely restored in 1870 at a cost of £1,400, and has since been decorated: it was begun by Sir Henry Marney knt. first Lord Marney, who, in his will, directed its completion and the erection of a tomb to himself and his two wives, Thomasine (Arundel) and Elizabeth (Wifield): he died 24 May 1523: Joh, Lord Marney, by will in 1524, also appointed his burial here and gave directions for his tomb: he died 27 April, 1525: this chapel now contains the alabaster tomb of Sir William Marney knt, ob, 1414, removed hither from the chancel, together with other memorials that illustrious family: there are also in the church monuments to Robert Camock, ob. March 1584: Nicholas Corsellis esq. ob. October 19, 1674,  40, and others, with some shields of arms: there are 190 sittings. The register dares from 1742 of baptisms and marriages, and of burials from 1743 The living is a rectory, net yearly value £250, with 4 acres of glebe and residence, in the gift of the Rev. Thos. Everard Cartwright M.A. rector of St John the Divine, Chatham and held since 1886 by the Reve. Henry James Boys M.A. of St. Edmund Hall, Oxford. Layer Marney Tower, one of the earliest and largest brick edifices erected in England, was built in 1520 by Henry Lord Marney and was quadrangular in plan, inclosing a spacious court: of this magnificent structure only the great entrance tower and a few other portions now remain: this stately tower, though now ruinous, is still an imposing pile, and consists of a lofty centre, lighted by two large square-headed windows of 5 lights, flanked at each angle by and octangular tower of 8 storeys in height, with windows in each face and terminating in a battlemented parapet: these towers, rising from high ground, command a very extensive view over the surrounding country, particularly to the west and eastward over the sea: it is the property of the Rev. Alfred Peache, but is now (1898) unoccupied. The Rev. Alfred Peache M.A. who is lord of the manor, Sir William Nevile Abdy bart. J.P. Albyns, Romford, Mr F.C. Ryder, Mr William Harrison, of the Leys, and James Round esq. M.P. Birch Hall, Colchester are the principal landowners. The soil is heavy; subsoil, loam. The chief crops are wheat, oats and beans. The area is 2, 194 acres of land and 5 of water; rateable value, £1,242; the population in 1891 was 278 in the civil and 250 in the ecclesiastical parish.
By Local Government Board Order 22,363, March 24, 1889, a detached part of Great Wigborough was transferred to this parish.
Sexton, John Bell.
There is a brick receiving box in the village, cleared at 6:20 p.m; Sundays 10:20 a.m. Letters from Kelvedon R.S.O. arrive at 8:30 a.m. The nearest money order and telegraph offices are at Birch, 2 miles distant.
National School (mixed), built in 1850, for 5 children: average attendance, 20; Miss E. Baxter, mistress
Boys Rev, Henry James M.A. Rectory
Photo: Mersea Museum - Mary Downes
Image ID KEL_1899_LMA
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