The Foxearth and District Local History Society

Local group - events and information.

Meetings and activities, announcements and notices for the Foxearth and District Local History Society, and associated organisations. For more information on recent events and current programme, please email or contact Clare Mathieson 01787 311337 or Lynda Rumble 01787 281434

Metal Detectoring with Matt and Sam: April 13th 2013

On Saturday April 13 12 members and friends were treated to a really absorbing couple of hours with metal detectorists Matt and Sam.

We worked on the field to the north side of the church by kind permission of David Jackson. There were several detectors so therefore all of us were able to participate.

Finds were recorded as a child’s decorated medieval finger ring and an animal bell about 40mm across, when cleaned of mud and thoroughly washed the bell was found to have its internal ringer still in situ. It is thought that this object was bronze and again of the medieval period.

The searches also turned up large amounts of iron objects including parts of farm machinery, nails, horse shoes and unknown pieces of metal.

The two detectorists were able to show us a number of finds made on previous searches consisting of many coins, medals and simple jewellery etc. but nothing of real value or interesting enough for exhibition in museums although some items were of great age. They are still searching for the pot of gold.

A most interesting time was had by all and everyone agreed that another day should be organised in the near future.

Alan Fitch

Conducted Tour of Castle Hedingham by Dickie Bird: April 9th 2013

On Tuesday, April 9th. 10 members and friends were given a conducted tour of Castle Hedingham by local historian Dickie Bird.

We started at The Bell and were treated to one of the most interesting talks we have ever had.

Dickie explained how the de Veres of the castle influenced so many of the surrounding villages right up until the death of Aubrey de Vere the 20th. Earl in 1703. He also explained about visits by royalty including Queen Elizabeth I and several kings.

It is also believed by many that Edward the 17th Earl is the true author of the Shakespeare canon.

Many other castles and larger houses in the greater area were owned by the de Veres. The Hedingham Heritage Society have published a brochure containing a map of the wider area detailing the most important towns and villages where these buildings can be seen.

After discussing many of the major properties in the town, for town it indeed is, owing to the fact that a market was granted to the town by King John. We completed the tour in the beautiful late Norman church of St Nicholas. The most amazing rood screen in the church was discussed in detail. Dickie had identified many of the carvings on the screen and submitted his findings to specialists at Cambridge. It is hoped that a booklet on the subject will be published shortly.

Dickie was roundly thanked by chairman Alan Fitch and it was agreed that a further visit would be booked next year.

Afterwards members availed themselves of refreshments at the Magnolia Tearooms.

Alan Fitch