Our second full day visit for the 2019 season was on Thursday June 2019, to Greensted Church and Copped Hall, both near Epping.
St Andrews Church Greensted is the oldest wooden church in the world and probably the oldest wooden building still standing in Europe. A few timbers in the nave remain from the original Saxon structure. These have been dated to between 998 and 1063. Many changes have been made to the church over the years but worship has continued here for 1300 years. A guided tour of this lovely old church told us more of its history.
The visit to Copped Hall gave us a chance to see restoration in progress. Copped Hall is a Palladian mansion of 1753-8, burnt in 1917 and asset stripped in 1950. From 1986 to 1995 a prolonged campaign was fought to save the mansion and its Conservation Area from repeated large-scale development proposals. Architect Alan Cox, who was very involved in the campaign, raised the finance to enable the specially formed Copped Hall Trust to acquire the freehold of the hall and gardens in 1995. The visit showed how the hall and gardens are being brought back from extreme dereliction. It proved to be a fascinating tour.