The parish of Newport lies in the valley of the River Cam in north-west Essex. It is about three and a half miles south west of the market town of Saffron Walden, and a short distance from the Hertfordshire and Cambridgeshire borders. It probably originated in the early 10th century as a royal foundation, and it early developed some urban features such as a market. Its position on an important through route between London and East Anglia gave it a more varied character than some of its neighbouring villages, and the coming of the railway in the 19th century led to the establishment of a gas works and maltings. Even so, it remained a largely agricultural community until the mid 20th century, but thereafter its position as a thoroughfare village tended to enhance its character as a dormitory village, with most of its adult population finding employment elsewhere, some in London.
This book explores the varying character of the village over eleven centuries. It looks at the pattern of landownership, the social structure and agricultural economy of the village, and its institutions, not least its 16th-century grammar school. It also discusses the part played, especially in the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries, by the owners of Shortgrove Hall, within the parish, and Quendon Hall, a few miles to the south.
The Victoria County History of Essex has already covered much of the south-western and eastern parts of the county, including those parishes which are now part of Greater London. This is VCH's first venture into north-west Essex, and it is the third in the VCH's series of parish histories ('shorts') designed to bring local research to publication as soon as possible.
To: Victoria County History of Essex Trust, Pentlow Hall, Pentlow, Essex. CO10 7SP.
Please send me ..... copy / copies of Newport at £15.00 (including postage and packing (UK only)).
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