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The Radion Cinema, Laindon
Radion Cinema, High Road, demolished 1969 and never replaced.


Laindon Essex Ligeandune c.1000, Leienduna 1086 (Domesday Book). Probably hill by a stream called Lea’. Lost Celtic river-name (possibly meaning light river’) + Old English dn.

At the time of the first national census in 1801 the total population of Laindon stood at 242. In 1901 it had reached 408, and by 1931 the population had risen to 4,552.

The Imperial Gazetteer of England & Wales by Rev. John Marius Wilson

The Reverend John Wilson edited these impressive topographical volumes between 1870 and 1872. They included a brief description of Laindon.

LAINDON, a village and a parish in Billericay district, Essex.

The village stands near the source of the river Crouch, 3½ miles NW of Pitsea r. station, and 3½ S by E of Billericay; and has a post-office under Ingatestone.

The parish includes Basildon chapelry; and, in the part around Laindon village, is sometimes called Langdon-Clay.

White's gazetteer and directory

In the 1800s the publisher William White of Sheffield produced a small history of Laindon in his yearly gazetteer and directory.

Reproduced here is the entry information for Laindon from the 1848 edition.

LAINDON, or Langdon Clay, is a pleasant village, on the northern declivity of the Laindon Hills, 3½ miles South by East of Billericay, and 7 miles South East by East of Brentwood.

Its parish contains 568 inhabitants, and 2300 acres of land, exclusive of Basildon chapelry, which is consolidated with it ecclisiastically, under the name of Laindon-cum-Basildon; but they support their poor as two separate townships.

Since Domesday Survey, the manor of Laindon, or Langdon, has been held by the successive Bishops of London, but part of the soil belongs to W. Roper and several other proprietors. The estate called Gobions was held by the Gobion family in the 14th century; and afterwards by the Symonds and Gaynesfords.

The Church (St. Nicholas), stands on rising ground, and has a nave, south aisle, and chancel, with a wooden tower and spire. It had a chantry, founded and largely endowed in 1329, by Thomas Berdefield, for a chaplain to pray for his soul for ever at the altar of the Virgin Mary and St. Thomas the Martyr.

Some ancient grave-stones in the church have several figures of persons in religious habits, but the inscriptions are gone.

The rectory, valued in K.B. at £35.6s.8d., and in 1831 at £779, with the perpetual curacy of Basildon annexed to it, is in the patronage of the Bishop of London, and incumbency of the Rev. Edward Hodgson, M.A., who was inducted in 1803, and resides at Rickmansworth vicarage, Herts.

In 1617, John Puckle left in trust, for charitable uses, a farm 62 acres, called Puckle's, and now let for £50 a year.

The rent of this farm having greatly exceeded the sums directed by the donor to be paid for charitable uses, a new scheme for the future administration of the charity was confirmed by the Court cf Chancery, in 1831, and under it the rent is applied yearly, as follows: - £4 to the poor of Great Burstead parish; £20 to the master of Laindon School, for teaching 20 poor children of this parish; £1 for a sermon on St. John's day; and £25 in distribution of coals and clothing among the poor parishioners - except what it may be necessary to deduct for repairs, etc.

The poor of this parish have also a yearly rent charge of £4, left by an unknown donor, out of an estate called the Vineyard, in Fobbing parish.

The inhabitants of note are listed as:

Rev. A.P. Birrell M.A., curate
Christopher Blanks, shopkeeper and smith
Joseph Crick, road contractor
William Everett, beer seller
Henry Hollowbread, victualler, Fortune of War
John Murray, wheelwright
Mr Richard Spurgeon
George Wright, victualler, Duke's Head


Charles Archer
Joseph Archer
Charles Backenham
Charles Dove
Joseph French
John Hunt
Thomas Jeffrey
George Harvey King
William Mason
James Mason
Henry Pryer
Thomas Richardson, and cattle dealer
John Roper
James Sadler
Steven Scotchman
Daniel Wright

Source: William White's History, Gazetteer, and Directory of Essex 1848

White's Directories
The publisher William White of Sheffield issued a yearly series of gazetteer's and directories covering the United Kingdom. These began in 1826 in partnership with William Parson, but from 1831 were solely the work of White. William White continued to produce these until 1898 when his company was absorbed into Kelly's (Frederic Festus Kelly) trade directory, which continued into the twentieth century.

Kelly's Directory of Essex, 1894

LAINDON, is a parish and village, with a station on the direct line of the London, Tilbury and Southend railway, 25 miles from London and 8 south-east from Brentwood, in the Mid division of the county, Barstable hundred, Brentwood county court district and petty sessional division, Billericay union, and in the rural deanery of Barstable, archdeaconry of Essex and diocese of St. Albans.

The church of St. Nicholas, standing on rising ground, at some distance from the village, is a building of stone originally Early English, but now in the Perpendicular style, consisting of chancel, nave, south aisle, divided from the nave by an arcade of two bays, and a western tower with oak shingled spire containing 5 bells, two of which are dated 1588 and 1619: there is a piscina and in the aisle a recess supposed to be the founder's tomb, which has been carefully preserved.

Perhaps the most interesting feature about the church is the priest's house at the west end, the lower story of which was used, till recently, as a schoolroom; of its curious external oak framing, so much as was actually decayed was removed at the restoration and replaced by new, the remainder being refixed and kept together by iron bands: the lower room is now used as a vestry: the restorations, carried out in 1881-3, at a cost of £1,700, from designs by Mr. F. Chancellor, of Chelmsford, are in the Perpendicular style. The register dates from the year 1653.

The living is a rectory, with "Basildon annexed, average tithe rent-charge £589; net yearly value £280, with 54 acres of glebe and residence, in the gift of the Bishop of St. Albans, and held since 1882 by the Rev. Beaumarice Stracey Clarke, of St. Bees ; the Rev. Herbert Carpenter has been curate-incharge since Aug. 1893.

The Bishop of London is lord of the manor.

The principal landowners are Lord Petre, Ezekiel L. Dove and C. C. Lewis, esqrs. and the president of St. John's College, Oxford.

The soil is heavy clay; subsoil, clay. The chief crops are wheat, barley, oats, beans, peas and clover.

The area is 1,697 acres; rateable value, £1,342; the population 1881 was 304, exclusive of Basildon.
Parish Clerk, Thomas Spooner.

Post office.-Mrs Martha Ann Miller, sub-postmistress. Letters arrive from Brentwood via Billericay at 8.00 a.m.; despatched at 5 p.m. The nearest money order & telegraph office is Billericay.

John Puckle in 1614 endowed a school here with an income of £65 yearly, arising from land in Laindon; the school is now closed & the endowment is administered by a body of 7 trustees (the rector generally acting as chairman) under a new scheme, sanctioned by the Charity Commissioners; there is also a small charity of £4 a year, from land in Fobbing parish, left by an unknown donor, & called "the Vineyard".

A School Board, consisting of 5 members, for the United District of Laindon, Basildon, & Lee Chapel, was constituted 26 November, 1873; G. William Scholding, Crays hill, Billericay, clerk to the board & attendance officer.

Board School (mixed), built in 1877, for 60 children; average attendance, 40; Anthony Stevens, master.
Police Station, Alfred Britton, constable
Railway Station, Alfred Fife, station master

Allonby John, farmer, Hunt's farm
Brown Daniel, farmer, Thrift farm
Buckenham Charles, farmer
Buckenham Eldred, farmer, Laindon pond
Burrell Charles, farmer, Watch house
Clark Jas. bailiff for Wm. Cloke esq
Downham George, farmer
Dowson Edward, coal mer. Station
French Robert, farmer
French Robert, jun. farmer
Frost John, Duke's Head P.H.
Horn John, Fortune of War P.H.
Jefferies James, farmer
Mead James, beer retailer & shopkpr
Miller Edward, blacksmith
Wingfield Samuel, farmer

Kelly's Directory of Essex, 1894 - entry for Lee Chapel

LEA. CHAPEL (East Lea or Ley, signifying the east pasture) was formerly an extra-parochial district, but is now a parish in Billericay union, about a mile and a half south from Laindon church; it was formerly a distinct manor and is a chapelry: the ancient chapel or chantry, is now demolished.

The parish contains 480 acres; rateable value, £340; had 15 inhabitants in 1891.

The trustees of the late Major Bailey and the trustees of the late T. C. Swinborne esq. are the impropriators of the tithe and the latter are principal landowners.

Clark John Benhjamin, farmer, Lee Chapel farm
Jackson Thomas, farmer, Lee Woottens

These articles are used in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 UK: England & Wales.

Text written 2002.
Copyright © 2002, Basildon History Online. All rights reserved.
Page added: 2001
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