POW Camp

Over the past few years we have explored the history behind the POW camp(s) at Chrishall Grange. This has been done in association with The Ickleton Society and you can see a full report of the findings on their website here.

The Royal Observer Corps

The following article was written by Joe Hagger who was one of the village cobblers or shoe-makers and lived in the cottage that faces the green next to The Red Cow. (This article is published as written and the language reflects the time at which Mr Hagger was...

Bryan Rogers: childhood in Chrishall and the outbreak of WWII

(Pictured above: Dot and Charlie Rogers with sons Leonard and Bryan and daughter Gwen. Dot's mother "Nan-Nan" Rush. Mr and Mrs Jim Archer, friends from Saffron Walden. On holiday in Frinton, last week of August 1939 just before WWII was declared.) Who am I? I was born...

Chrishall Observation Post

On the corner of Hertford Lane, is Chrishall Observation Post. It is a concrete structure, fairly substantial but also fairly well hidden in the undergrowth and hedging that grew up around it.  The article below, written by Stephen Foote for the village magazine,...

Chrishall Remembers World War 1

Thank you to everyone who supported the events to commemorate World War 1 that we held at the Archive in November. Thank you to our many visitors, people who loaned items for the display, gave us items for the Archive, came to the talk and supported us by email even...

Village Green 1940s

Photograph from the Bruce Drury Collection View from Church road towards Martenholme in the 1940s or early 1950s. Note the (red & white?) kerbs - was this a wartime safety measure? The gates you can see in the centre of the picture were apparently, at one...

The time of my life – Chrishall, 1939-42

Evacuee Norman Sherry tells us about his time in Chrishall during the Second World War (taken from an article sent to Mrs Cranwell in 2002).  Norman arrived with a group of 14 children who were evacuees in the village.  His memories are still very clear of the...

War Memorial

The War Memorial without railings: October 2015 World War I - 1914 - 1918 Chrishall lost eight men in the First World War and another 45 villagers are listed on a board in the Church as serving their country in one way or...

Chrishall Civil Defence Corps

Chrishall Civil Defence Corps in Jigneys Meadow: From the top: Arthur Crocker, Albert Walker, George Wallman, Gerald Kent, Walter Brand, Leonard Rogers, Cyril Flack, George Rogers, Charlie Pitches. Fred Cranwell, Miss Wall Charlie Bysouth, Jimmy Rush, Harold Cranwell,...

Home Guard

In WWII everyone in the village was involved in the war effort whether it was making jam or manning the Observation Post at the top of the village, this important duty being carried out by the Home Guard.  The full Platoon and Chrishall Division can be seen below, and...


Welcome to this website about the community of Chrishall in Essex.

Chrishall is a small village on a hilltop in the very north west of Essex, close to the borders of Hertfordshire and Cambridgeshire, in the East of England.   This website is particularly aimed at the local community and the genealogist who perhaps has never visited Chrishall and wishes to visualise the kind of community whence his or her ancestor came. It is run by…

Chrishall Archive Group logo

“I stumbled accidentally across some aspects of its history, and began to learn and think more about it, but then – as I studied the records – people began to rise up out of them. Where before I had seen only names on lists, individual characters began to shake their shoulders and stand up. It was as though these dead were being awakened, resurrected. They seemed close, as though they had something to say.”
(quote from In a Country Churchyard by Ronald Fletcher. Although this quote refers to Westleton in Suffolk, we hope you come to feel the same about Chrishall charcters and history.)

Featured articles and content:

Chrishall village walks

Village Walks

If you are in Chrishall why not enjoy one of our local Village Walks? These short walks take you around the local area following an area of interest. If you want more information there are QR codes with each walk which connect with articles on the website here.If you...

Church Seating Plans

Church Seating Plans

Robert Brand, farmer, who farmed Builden End farm in the 1800s was also a writer. He wrote down everything, and what is more he kept it. Although we only have part of his collection of papers he gives us a wealth of information about Chrishall, as well as other places...

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Mr Guthrie, Evangelist

In the 1950s Mr Guthrie, a local JMVC evangelist would come to the village and hold children’s Bible meetings in the field between Wire Farm and Barleymans. This is remembered by Bruce Drury and mentioned in a document on the Saffron Walden Community Church website.

Counting the Acres

The number of Acres in the Parish of Chreshall taken from the Surveyors Papers and Accounts 1778 Arable inclosed 616 Meadow ground 167 Common-Field Arable 985 Pasture or Feeding ground 270 Total 2039

Sorting the tythes

Memorandum Jary 5th 1721

I obtained an Order from the Justices of the Peace at ye Petty Sessions held this day at Newport that the occupior of the Mill in Chrishall shall pay yearly for Tythe eight shillings to the Vicar the Mill having payed Tythe before …. whether this be sufficient but ’twas all that could be Recovered by Me

Tho: Melvill. Vicar.

Bronze Age Hoard

Items from a Bronze Age Hoard that was found between Chrishall and Elmdon in the 18th century can be seen on the British Museum’s website here.

Music in the Church

William Cranwell stoolBefore the Church had an organ, singing was accompanied by William Cranwell on clarinet, and two of his brothers, John on the bass viol and Clear on the viola or violin.

Pictured left is the little stool that William used to sit on to play his clarinet.

Spooky Tales

Spooky tales? It seems that Chrishall was the place that MR James based his ghost story “The Story of a Disappearance and an Appearance”, according to several sources including this one. A copy can be purchased from Amazon if you are feeling brave!

Bonfires on Jigneys

We used to have huge bonfires on Jigneys for Bonfire Night.  Mr Crocker would provide tyres to burn! (1930’s/40s. ER.)

Circus at Broad Green

I remember there being a circus once on the small field on the corner between Broad Green and Palmers Lane.  (1930’s. BR.)

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