Thames Tributary Mardyke - Stifford

Thames Tributary Mardyke
The Mardyke flows westwards

Post to the west South Ockendon
Post to the east North Stifford

Back Lane
Davy Down riverside park. Named for the local Davy family who were landowners at one time
The Stifford Viaduct. Built in 1892 for the London Tilbury & Southend Railway for the line Grays and Upminster. It has 14 arches and is wide enough for a double track which has never been laid
Pumping station, built in 1928, with two diesel engines. The station is still in operation, pumping water from 150 feet. The taller building is the Stifford Pumping Station and the lower one adjacent to Back Lane is the Filter House. They are owned and operated by Essex & Suffolk Water Company.

Corran Way

Cruik Avenue
Mardyke County Primary School was here, which opened in 1952 but the infants building became Branwood special school. Housing now on these sites.

High Road
The Dog and Partridge Inn.  Noted as an alehouse in 1757. In the 17th the timber-framed building was called Lovelands, and home to Sir Thomas Gurney. By the 18th it was called Clockhouse and housed an impressive clock the housing of which is still in the pub. It was registered as an independent meeting house in the 17th. It was rebuilt in 1934 but there is an original fireplace in the bar.

Mardyke valley golf club
Golf course in the grounds of Ford Place

Flows through this area in a deep valley and is older than the Thames. It used to be navigable as far as Bulphan.

Pilgrims Lane
This goes to West Thurrock continuing the road which has crossed the Mardyke. Said, by 19th historian, to be part of route by which pilgrims went to a river crossing on their way to Canterbury.
Davy Down Cottage. Thatched house. This was once The Swan Inn. The Harrow Inn, mentioned in 1738, was a single-storey weather boarded cottage close to Stifford Bridge.

South Road
Hill Farm. Farmed by the Winch family, but land also use for sand extraction.

Stifford Heath
Forty deneholes said to have been found in 1956 south west of where the railway crosses the Mardyke.

Stifford Hill
Smithy. Later known as The Forge and re-located across the road site used to make wrought ironwork and fencing.
1-2 Hill Cottages. Built 1600 and thought to be the smallest in Thurrock
The Gardens. Thatched
Poor cottages 18th alms houses were once here
Field of Peace. 1920s local authority IWW war memorial area. Sir Fredric and Lady Mary Millard Clarke once lived at Coppid Hall. Sir Fredric died in 1928, and his widow later donated the land to the elderly of the village on 19th June, 1933. The name derives from her wish that the field should be a place to 'sit in peace.'
Stifford Bridge. Built before 1487. In 1617 it was a stone bridge repaired by the county. In 1760 it was brick, over a 14-ft. waterway. It was replaced by an iron bridge in 1868 and again rebuilt in 1925 with a nice balustrade.
Bridge Meadow Farm
Ford Place. House with a gable with a plaque saying ‘1665’and there are 16th century walls. It has a core of a 1590 brick house, originally half "H" plan, with a Georgian west front of l747. It is in brown brick and at the front brick Tuscan pilasters are thought to be the first examples in Essex. There is a buttery and kitchen with an original l6th chimney and also two bread ovens. It was once called ‘Hobbes of Ford’’ and it was where the local lords of the manor lived from the late 17th but was part of the manor of South Ockendon Hall. After the Second World War it was divided into flats, and the grounds developed for light industry but later derelict following a fire in 1987.
Romano British cremations found near Ford Place north of the Mardyke.


Anonymous said…
spelling correction;
Sir Fielding Clarke
Anonymous said…
spelling correction:
Lady Mary Milward Clarke

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