New River.jpg

Another in the occasional series on historical sites on the “London Loop” (London Outer Orbital Path)  walk …

Enfield  was first recorded in the “Domesday Book” of 1086 as Enefelde, from the  Old English personal name Eana, and feld, in context probably referring to an area of cleared woodland.  What is now Enfield Town grew  up around the former village green.  It  grew rapidly following the arrival of the railway in 1849.  The Royal Small Arms Factory, which opened here in 1815, employed a workforce of some 2400 by the 1880s, and only closed down as recently as 1987.  The factory manufactured the Lee-Enfield rifle throughout the First and  Second World Wars,  and the Brno-Enfield machine gun, or Bren gun, throughout the Second. The church of St Andrew was originally built in the town centre in the twelfth century (see also below); and Enfield Grammar School in 1558; and the market square was laid out in 1632.  Elsyng Palace was built a couple of miles to the north of the town centre, on Forty Hill, at least as long ago as the fifteenth century, and Forty Hall on essentially the same site in the seventeenth (see previous posting).

Church of St Andrew


Nave looking towards altar.JPG

The church of St Andrew was originally built in the twelfth century, and subsequently substantially rebuilt in the fourteenth through sixteenth, and restored in the nineteenth and early twentieth.  The nave and tower survive from the fourteenth through  sixteenth centuries, and a trefoil-headed lancet window in the chancel to the thirteenth.

In the interior are a large number of Medieval to post-Medieval memorials, including those to Jocosa, Lady Tiptoft (d. 1446); Edmund, Baron de Roos or Ros (d. 1508) …

William Smith.JPG

… William Smith, sometime servant to  Henry VIII, Edward VI, Mary I and Elizabeth I (d. 1592) …

Henry Middlemore (d. 1610).JPG

… Henry Middlemore, Groom of the Privy Chamber to Elizabeth I (d. 1610); Francis Evington, Alderman of London   (d. 1614) …

Raynton memorial.JPG

Detail of Raynton memorial.JPG

… and Sir Nicholas Raynton, Lord Mayor of London  (d. 1646) (once imprisoned for refusing the King, Charles I, a loan).

Benjamin and Thomas Boddington.JPG

There are also some interesting later memorials, including that to Thomas Boddington, a one-time slave-owner who became involved with the Committee for the Relief of the Black Poor and with the foundation of Sierra Leone in the late eighteenth century (d. 1821) …


… and, in the churchyard, that to Samuel Garnault, Esq., Treasurer of the New River Company (d. 1827) (the New River passes nearby).  The Garnaults, incidentally, were a Huguenot family who arrived as refugees in Enfield  in 1684.  Michael Garnault bought a former Tudor mansion called Bowling Green House in Bulls Cross in 1724, and various members of the family continued to live there until 1812 (the site is now occupied by  Myddelton House, built by the Bowles family in 1818).

3 thoughts on “Enfield

    1. Ashley

      We lived there for about 25 years so it will be interesting to read what you discover! I look forward to reading it.

  1. Ashley

    Thanks Bob for this interesting post. I wish we had explored a bit more when we lived in St. Albans! Although I do remember visiting a flower and plant market there a few times, at the weekends!
    I shall re-read this one! My mother was sent to the RASF in Enfield from Manchester during the war to see the production of Bren guns and what she learned there she took back to Manchester to use on the production of the Bren guns at the Linotype factory in Altrincham


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