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Walthamstow Village

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Waltham Forest

A delightful conservation area and recent ‘best London village’, situated in Upper Walthamstow, and also known as Church End. There was a clearing in the forest here at the time of Domesday Book and the first church was built in 1145. The present St Mary’s seems to have evolved somewhat haphazardly from that structure. The timber-framed Ancient House (formerly the White House) dates from the 15th century, with a west wing rebuilt in the 16th. Sir George Monoux founded almshouses on Vinegar Alley in 1527, together with a school that later relocated to Chapel End. A Nag’s Head pub stood in the village by 1675. The Vestry House, which began life in 1730 as the parish workhouse, is now a local history museum and borough archive. Squire’s almshouses were built in 1795, while Orford House and The Chestnuts date from the early 19th century. Most of the village was built up in the 20 years following the enclosure of Church Common in 1850, including a new Nag’s Head on Orford Road in 1859. The village was saved from subsequent disfigurement by the opening of the station at Hoe Street, which drew commercial development away to the west. The Ancient House was lovingly restored in 1934. The council made a number of environmental improvements to Walthamstow Village in 1980 and the Ancient House was repaired again in 2002.

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The Ancient House is a centrepiece of this former winner of Time Out's Best Village in London award

Postal district: E17
Further reading: Walthamstow Village, Walthamstow Historic Local Books, 1996

Walthamstow Village residents' association

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