Colin Crosby Heritage Tours


[An image showing Rochford]Rochford is a historic old market town in Essex, four miles to the North of Southend. It has for centuries been the capital of the Rochford Hundred, and also of the famous Essex witch country.

It stands on the River Roach, just a little stream as it flows through the town, but widening out into a tidal river half a mile further downstream at Stambridge Mills. The Roach flows into the River Crouch.

Rochford has a unique mediaeval street system. North Street, South Street, East Street and West Street almost meet in the town centre, but no two of these streets actually meet head on.

The Market Square is off West Street, and joined by an alley to East Street. The market, dormant for much of the twentieth century, was reintroduced a few years ago.

The impressive brick St. Andrew’s Church stands away from the town, probably in deference to Rochford Hall. The earlier building on this site was one of the homes of Anne Boleyn. She was wooed here by Henry VIII.

Henry Bolingbroke, son of John of Gaunt, was married here to the 12-year-old Mary de Bohun. He later seized the crown as Henry IV. Mary had already died by this time, and is buried at Leicester. But she had given birth to a number of children, including the future Henry V.

An old house named Kings Hill was the scene of an intriguing ancient custom known as the Whispering Court. There are many houses built in various styles, including the Essex tradition of weatherboarding, and the town centre is very pretty.

The 19th century Christian sect known as the Peculiar People was founded by Joseph Banyard in Rochford. They had chapels in several villages in Essex and Kent.

One of the most fateful battles of English history was fought at Ashingdon, just outside Rochford, in 1016, when Cnut finally defeated Edmund Ironside.

Blue Badge Guide Colin Crosby was born in Rochford, and lived in the town during the 1970s.

Blue Badge Guide Colin Crosby is available to lead Guided Walks around Rochford for groups.

Events in Rochford

Rochford, Rochford and Hawkwell, Rochford and Stambridge, Rochford Lanes

Places in Rochford

Corn Exchange, Former Public Library, Kings Hill, Lord Richs Almshouses, Market Square, Old House, Rochford Hall, Rochford Station, St. Andrews Church

Places in Rochford...

Events in Rochford...