12. BRENTWOOD. (D.d.)
(O.S. 6 in. lxvii. N.E.)
Brentwood is a small town and parish 6 m. N.E.
of Romford. The White Hart Inn is of interest.
(1). Chapel of St. Thomas the Martyr stands
on the S. side of the High Street 300 yards W.
of the junction with Herongate Road. The walls
are of flint and pebble-rubble with courses of freestone in the W. wall and with dressings of a sandy
limestone. It was founded in or about 1221 by
the Abbot of St. Osyth for the use of the Abbey's
tenants, but fell into disuse early in the 19th
century and was partly destroyed about 1870; it is
now represented only by part of the W. end of
the Nave and the North-West Tower; the former
was re-built, probably in the third quarter of the
14th century, and the latter appears to have been
inserted late in the same century.
Chapel of St. Thomas the Martyr, Plan
The Chancel (formerly 27 ft. by 17½ ft.), has been
The Nave has in the N. wall, of which a length
of 13 ft. remains E. of the tower, a doorway of
continuously moulded jambs and two-centred
head with a moulded label, much perished, and a
hollow-chamfered four-centred rear-arch. Of the
W. wall the lower half remains, showing that the
nave was 27 ft. wide; in it is a much defaced doorway apparently similar to that in the N. wall, and
above it are remains of the former W. window.
The North-West Tower (8 ft. square), has E.
and S. arches, each two-centred and of two moulded
orders, with plain chamfered responds of two
orders having moulded bases; the S.E. angle has
an attached octagonal shaft, now almost entirely
concealed by ivy and of uncertain use; the stair
in the N.W. angle is entered by a doorway with
chamfered jambs and four-centred head.
Fittings—Door: In N. doorway—of elm battens
with strap-hinges ornamented with incised lozenges,
probably 16th or 17th-century. Stoup: E. of
N. doorway—with trefoiled and two-centred head
and jambs of two orders, basin destroyed, probably
late 13th or early 14th-century.
Condition—Ruinous and overgrown with ivy.
(2). White Hart Inn, on N. side of High Street,
100 yards W. of (1), is of three storeys, the uppermost modern; the walls are timber-framed,
plastered and weather-boarded, the roofs are
tiled. It was built probably in the second half
of the 15th century on an L-shaped plan with the
wings extending towards the E. and N., but
there may originally have been a second wing on
the N. side of the main block; at a slightly later
date the N.W. wing was lengthened and a further
block built out towards the E. from the N. end of this
wing; in the 19th century the main block was
extended towards the E. and a wing added to it
on the N.
The N.W. wing with its long range of 15th-century windows is noteworthy.
The main block is pierced by an archway which
retains two original four-centred arches with sunk
spandrels and the outer with moulded wall-posts.
On the S. front the upper storey originally projected. The N.W. wing (Plate p. 49) is of two
storeys; the upper projects towards the E. on
curved brackets and contained a gallery which
opened towards the courtyard by a range of
arches now partly blocked; those of the original
wing have chamfered three-centred heads with
sunk spandrels, but those of the later extension
have chamfered four-centred heads with plain
Inside the building in the main block are old
ceiling-beams, now partly cased. The upper
storey over the passageway was formerly gabled,
and retains an original hollow-chamfered tie-beam.
In the N.W. wing some of the original beams are
moulded and supported by curved brackets;
in the upper storey are three 15th or early 16th-century doors, one with a two-centred, the others
with four-centred heads, all chamfered.
The following monuments, unless otherwise
described, are of the 17th century and of two
storeys, timber-framed and plastered; the roofs
are tiled or thatched. Some of the buildings have
original chimney-stacks, wide fireplaces and exposed
Condition—Good, or fairly good, unless noted.
High Street, N. side
(3). House, now shop, 230 yards W. of (2), has
been partly demolished. The original chimney-stack has grouped diagonal shafts.
(4). House, now shop, 100 yards E. of (2),
was built in the second half of the 16th century
but has been much altered. Inside the building
is a moulded ceiling-beam; the original staircase
has a square newel-post, straight string, moulded
rail and flat balusters.
(5). House, now four shops, N.E. of (4), incorporates two L-shaped buildings with the wings
extending towards the E. and N.; at the back are
(6). House, now shop, 220 yards E. of (5),
incorporates a small fragment of an old house.
(7). Chequers Inn, opposite (5), was built in the
second half of the 16th century on a half H-shaped plan with the wings extending towards the
S.; at the back are modern additions. The N.
front has been re-faced, and has a gable at each
end; at the W. end is an old doorway, now blocked.
Inside the building are two original doorways,
one now blocked, with four-centred heads, and an
original fireplace in the W. wing, also has a four-centred head. An original ceiling in the E. wing is
partly divided by moulded plaster ribs into hexagonal panels enclosing figures of men in short
pleated skirts, horses, birds, pigs, etc. In the upper
storey are braced tie-beams.
(8). House, now shops, 60 yards W. of (7),
was built early in the 15th century, possibly with a
central Hall and cross-wings at the E. and W. ends;
probably in the 16th century a passageway was
pierced through the main block and a wing was
added at the back; there are also modern additions
at the back. On the N. front are three gables.
In the passageway, which is probably on the site
of the former 'screens,' is an original doorway with
a massive two-centred head. In the roof of the
central block is an original king-post with a moulded
(9). House, formerly the George and Dragon
Inn, now shops, at the corner, 60 yards W.
of (8), was built probably late in the 15th century
on a half H-shaped plan with the wings extending
towards the S.; at the back are modern additions.
At the S. end of the W. wing the upper storey
projects on curved brackets. The original chimney-stack has diagonal pilaster-strips. Inside the
building, a modern staircase incorporates some
late 16th-century symmetrically turned balusters.
The roof of the main block is of two bays with
original king-post trusses.
(10). House, now shops, 100 yards W. of
(9), has been largely re-faced and altered. At the
back are five gables. The original chimney-stack
has grouped diagonal shafts.
(11). House, now shop and granary, at the corner,
200 yards W. of (10). The House was built
probably early in the 16th century but modern
alterations obscure the original plan. The early
16th-century Granary S. of the house is of two
storeys and is weather-boarded. It is pierced by a
central archway, the roof of which is supported
on curved braces. E. of the archway are remains
of an original doorway with a four-centred head
and moulded jambs, and opening into the upper
storey are two original doorways with hollow-chamfered jambs and three-centred heads. Inside
the building the roof has an original king-post
(12). Stonard's Farm, house, now three tenements, 90 yards S.S.W. of (9), was built probably
in the first half of the 16th century on a half
H-shaped plan with the wings extending towards
the S.; at the back are modern additions. On the
N. front the upper storey projects at each end
under a gable, but has been under-built at the E.
end; the main block has two gables, probably of
later date. The central chimney-stack is probably
original and has two square shafts. Inside the
building in the E. wing is an original doorway with
a four-centred head. Two rooms are partly lined
with 16th-century panelling. In the upper storey
of the W. wing is a tie-beam with curved braces.
(13). Grammar School, 350 yards E. of (1), on
the E. side of Herongate Road, was built in 1568,
but of the original building only the lower part
of the walls of the Hall remain. The W. doorway
is original and has chamfered jambs and four-centred head. Inside the building, above the N.
door, is a stone with inscription and date.
(14). House, 230 yards N.W. of (13), on W.
side of Ongar Road, was built probably on an
L-shaped plan with the wings extending towards
the S.W. and N.W., but has modern additions at
the back. The original central chimney-stack
has a square shaft with rebated angles.