Saturday, December 05, 2015


Looking forward to meeting friends and residents of Essex tomorrow (Sunday) at Billericay's great Christmas Market to which we have, in the past, welcomed thousands of visitors. Most shops will be open and I know there are some great bargains to be found.

I'm delighted to have been invited to sell some of my ten books at Hentons Residential offices at 139 High Street where Directors Nick Henton and Tim Kirkman will be welcoming visitors.  This building has some significance to me, as it is the first photograph in a book I wrote some dozen or so years ago entitled  BILLERICAY VOICES and is still in print.  Hentons' building was once an inn with much history (known as  The Three Horseshoes) way back in the mid-18th century. It has an intriguing, spooky provenance, as have lots of the buildings in that particular part of Billericay High Street.

Just a short walk from Hentons is our Town Library within Burghstead Lodge, which is reckoned to date back to the 17th century and boasts its own unusual history.  There, high on the left-hand wall, you will see photographs of Henton's office in earlier times - fascinating glimpse of the past.

The Library will be open and here you can meet our Museum's new Curator, Katie Wilkie who will be selling some of our newest titles from the Museum.  One, a book compiled by former Curator Chris Brewster and Barbara Birdsall, is a wonderful collection of Harry Richman's paintings which gives the reader glimpses of Billericay buildings as they were over half a century ago, some now sadly, demolished.

So, do pop in and meet us at both venues, share a Christmas drink and mincepies and let's talk about this super small town 'Billericay', it's history  and what it has to offer. Although many of our old jettied buildings were destroyed so long ago, we still have some ancient houses in and around the centre of Billericay. Look out for the Chantry House c.1510 at 61 High Street and learn more about its remarkable history.

No comments: