Epping Forest

Chingford’s heritage

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Sitting on the edge of Epping Forest, on the London/Essex border, is the London suburb of Chingford. It is host to an array of urban and countryside heritage.

Chingford Countryside

 

Originally the whole parish of Chingford lay within the ancient Forest of Essex. The Domesday figures for swine-pastures show that Chingford was well-wooded in the 11th century, although the parish had a considerable amount of arable land, which was increased by subsequent forest clearance. Chingford’s woodland is still similar in size to its area of woodland in the 1640’s.

Epping Forest and Chingford Plain became popular with day-trippers in Victorian times. As London’s largest open space, Epping Forest is a registered charity managed by the City of London.

Spend some time in “The View” learning the story and history of the forest.

Then visit the listed buildings on the edge of Epping Forest, including the Queen Elizabeth Hunting Lodge.

At the Queen Elizabeth Hunting Lodge, chingford by Juliamaud

Chingford Town

The town of Chingford began as a scattered farming community. Comprising of three forest hamlets, the inhabitants of Chingford had the ancient right to pasture cattle, branded with their mark, a crowned ‘G’, within the forest.

There has been a parish church in Chingford since Norman times. The present Old Church building dates from the late 13th century. However the church building had to be abandoned in the 1840’s as it was in such a bad state of repair. The Reverend Robert Boothby Heathcote decided to build, at his own expense, a new church on Chingford Green. The new Church on the Green, designed by Lewis Vulliamy, was built  in 1844 and established the prominence of the Chingford Green hamlet .

Chingford Green and SS Peter and Paul Church by Juliamaud

During Victorian times nearby Walthamstow and Leyton experienced a surge in urbanisation, but Chingford remained an agricultural parish until the arrival of the Great Eastern Railway.

The Chingford Green conservation area includes a variety of interesting buildings showing Chingford’s development over two hundred years from a small rural community to a suburb of modern London.

The Chingford Treasure Hunt

Discover the history of the “urban” part of Chingford (including the conservation area), starting at Chingford Station. Available as a self-guided hunt on the ClueKeeper platform

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Chingford Treasure Hunt

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Treasure Hunts in London are running a treasure hunt exploring the London/Essex border town of Chingford.

 

Tickets for the treasure hunt are available here.

Fountain in Chingford by Juliamaud
Fountain in Chingford by Juliamaud

 

Epping Forest and the Queen Elizabeth’s Hunting Lodge

Chingford is home to the Queen Elizabeth’s Hunting Lodge. This was built on the orders of Henry VIII in 1543 and contains exhibitions on Tudor history.

Next to the Queen Elizabeth’s Hunting Lodge is “The View”. This is a new visitor centre, with interactive displays telling the story of Epping Forest.

Both offer free entry from 10am to 5pm and are a ten minute uphill walk from the Chingford bus and train stations.

 

Connaught Water in Epping Forest by Juliamaud
Connaught Water in Epping Forest by Juliamaud

 

During the hunt, teams will be able to search for, amongst other thing, a number of blue plaques around the area.  This includes a newly replaced blue plaque following a request for its restoration by Treasure Hunts in London.

Tickets for the treasure hunt are available here.