Our first full day visit for the 2019 season was on Wednesday 22nd May 2019, to Layer Marney Tower and Cressing Temple Barns, near Colchester.
We first visited Cressing Temple, itself steeped in history dating back to the 12th century when it was given to the Knights Templar. It is home to three Grade 1 listed barns as well as Tudor built walled gardens. The oldest, the Barley Barn, was constructed sometime between1205 and 1235. The Wheat Barn was constructed about fifty years later and the Granary Barn is early 16th century. There was a Tudor Mansion formerly on the site but all that remains now are the Tudor, brick built, walled gardens now fully restored to their former glory.
We moved on to Layer Marney Tower for an inclusive ploughman’s lunch and cake!
Layer Marney is a Grade 1 Tudor house. Henry, first Lord Marney, was Henry VIII’s Lord Privy Seal. He planned a palace to rival Hampton Court, but he died in 1523 and two years later work stopped, with only one range of the building completed. The gatehouse is now in private hands and is only open to the public by special arrangement. After lunch we will be given a guided tour of the house and the church which was altered to match the house.
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