Heritage: The history of Aldborough Hatch

Some of the 6,000 bulbs planted over the past three years by members and their friends at St. Peter

Some of the 6,000 bulbs planted over the past three years by members and their friends at St. Peters Church in Aldborough Hatch. Picture: Ron Jeffries - Credit: Ron Jeffries

The Recorder takes a look at the history of some of the area’s most famous estates and manor houses and how they impacted the area’s place names

Although the name may have been derived from the family of Aldburgh - first recorded in our patch of east London in the 14th century - it is now widely believed that the family had already taken its name from the place itself.

"Bury" in this sense means manor house, and in the same way that there is Newbury nearby, this place was most likely known as Oldbury or "Aldbury".

The estate, which later included Downshall and Newbury lay on the southern edge of Hainault Forest, included an entrance or gateway, known as a "hatch", to the forest and to the east of Barkingside.

There were, at one time, four or five mansions in the area, which slowly adopted the name Aldborough Hatch.

Being secluded, it was a favourite residential palace of the gentry.

It is even reported that Queen Elizabeth I stayed in one while on a visit to Wanstead House - this shouldn't be a surprise, as she is reported to have stayed in 241 different recorded places during her reign.

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The famous poet John Dunne also stayed there while convalescing.

The refurbished Aldborough Hatch House, rebuilt in the 18th century, cost its owner Colonel Martin Bladen £14,000 - an astronomical figure in those days, roughly equivalent to £3million in today's money when adjusted for inflation.

Sadly, all the old manor houses have now gone.

The oldest was the original Aldborough Hall, which dated back to early Tudor times and was demolished in the early part of the 19th century.

In 1929, the crown bought Aldborough Hatch Farm, and finally the majority of the Aldborough Estate, which had been divided in 1668, was reunited.

In 1938, 87 acres of Aldborough House Farm estate and the whole of the Aldborough Hatch Farm were sold by the crown to the Corporation of the City of London as part of a deal involving land at Fairlop for a civil airport.

The farms were subsequently sold to Ilford Borough Council in 1953 when it was finally decided by the government under Winston Churchill not to build the airport there as the site for various reasons was considered unsuitable.