Posts Tagged ‘ History ’

Celebrate National Photo Week With The Marygreen Manor

This past week has been the celebration of photography everywhere. From the 28th July all the way through to the 3rd August, National Photo Week has been enjoyed the world over. Running for well over ten years with some of the biggest and brightest names in the industry all helping to promote what has become one of the biggest events in photography, it’s now a hugely prestigious event.

Since the invention of the camera itself, it’s been estimated that well over 3.5 trillion photographs have been taken. Someone even took the time to workout that if they were all stacked up in one tall pile, they’d stretch to approximately 553,000 miles. That works out at a little over one journey to the moon and all the way back again. With the average number of photos being taken every year totaling around 380 billion, it’s no wonder that this marvelous invention now requires its own week to look back and enjoy, especially as that number is expected to double in the next decade alone.

Taking into consideration the fact that we’ve just missed out on the actual week itself but not wanting to overlook it entirely, we thought we’d take a look back at a photo taken on what was part of the original land belonging to the Marygreen Manor estate in the 1920’s but first, let’s get an idea of the Marygreen’s history a little, shall we?

A little history of our Tudor manor house

The first owner of Marygreen Manor, way back in the 13th Century, was a Sir William de Bruyn when the manor was created within some 150 acres. Lying alongside the brook and Roman Road, the sights to be seen were spectacular. The estate was managed from the manor, which was surrounded by a substantial moat. In the late 15th century another family took over, named the Ropers, and proceeded to farm the Manor of Brook Street. They greatly enhanced the moated house and named it The Place. Henry Roper of the Roper family became quite an important officer within the royal household and as a result befriended Catherine of Aragon, the first wife of King Henry VIII. Both of whom were later guests of Henry’s at The Place. The Place, as a result of King Henry VIII’s “Dissolution of the Monasteries” was later taken away from the Roper family and found itself in the hands of the Wright family, with absent landlords and a few yeoman farmers taking control there after someway down the line. Various different owners made improvements over the years but it wasn’t until 1968 that it became the hotel we know and love today. It was at this point that it was named The Moat House and after changing ownership in later years, it was renamed the Marygreen Manor. Now, let’s take a look at that photo shall we?

A shooting party on the Thorndon Estate

1920's on the Thorndon estate

Take a step back in time for National Photo Week

This photo may seem a little familiar if you’ve ever taken the time to read “THE PLACE at Brook Street”. The photo depicts a shooting party sometime in the 1920’s that shows Charles Turner, Mr McKiver, Arthur Montagu Turner and Sir Montague Cornish Turner. The party stands in front of the house that once stood where Thorndon Hall stands today. This was once a part of the 150-acre site that the Marygreen was once a part of. The Turner family were very keen sportsman and enjoyed shooting. On the days when sports wasn’t taking priority, their time was spent gardening and keeping the land which they frequented looking as wonderful as it does now. When this photo was taken, much of the famous moat surrounding the Marygreen Manor was almost gone and very little evidence of its existence remained. The manor house itself during the time of this picture being taken had just undergone some modifications to the west wing, which included red brick and a cat-slide roof which projected out to create a covered walkway (you can still see this today).

This photo is a mere snippet into a time and place during the existence of the “THE PLACE at Brook Street”. If you’d like to find out more information and enjoy more stunning photography in the wake of National Photo Week then take a look at the book yourself. Better yet, pay a visit to one of the most historical sites in Essex here at the Marygreen Manor.


The Best Afternoon Tea In Essex

Our famous afternoon teas

Our famous afternoon teas

Here at The Marygreen Manor we’re well known for our rather entertaining events from Luther Vandross tribute nights to our Keep Calm and Carry On evenings as well as our luxurious accommodation. There’s one thing however, that reigns supreme when it comes to our reputation and that’s our exquisite Afternoon Teas, which are simply unbeatable when it comes to quality. Yes you may indeed find afternoon teas a plenty when making your way around the picturesque county of Essex but we guarantee you won’t find one of such quality and flavour as you’ll find here in our very own Tudor Restaurant. Before we begin to tantalise your taste buds with a mouthwatering description of our favourite offering at The Marygreen Manor, let’s first delve into the wonderful world of the Afternoon Tea and find out just where it came from.

The best afternoon tea in Essex, where did it come from?

Good old British Tea is something of an icon due to our nation being serious tea drinkers. The reason we’re such tea lovers however dates back to the early 19th century. The consumption of tea increased exponentially during this time and this appeared to coincide with the time when Anna, the 7th Duchess of Bedford would often complain of having a sinking feeling around the late afternoon. During this time it was quite common for people to enjoy only two main meals a day consisting of a hearty breakfast and feast of an evening around 8o’clock. For the Duchess however, the answer lay in a delightful pot of tea with a snack on the side. At first, the Duchess Anna would enjoy her tea in the afternoon privately in her bedroom however as time passed, she began to invite friends to join her at Woburn Abbey. Much to her delight, her summer practice proved so popular that she continued it on her return to London. It wasn’t long however until other such social hostesses soon picked up on the idea and the practice began to spread. It soon became respectable enough to move it into the drawing room as opposed to more private rooms. Before long, the most fashionable of society were sipping tea and nibbling sandwiches in the middle of the afternoon and the great British tradition of Afternoon Tea was born.

On the odd occasion you may see places serving something known as ‘high tea’. The reason for this is yet another British tradition whereby the upper classes would serve ‘low’ or ‘afternoon’ tea around 4o’clock. The middle and lower classes however would enjoy a more hearty ‘high’ tea at around 6o’clock in place of their dinner. The names simply derived from the height of the tables that the meals were served on, with the lower classes serving them on their evening dinner table.

Keep the tradition of Afternoon Tea in Essex alive

Sadly, in spite of the huge amount of overseas visitors still believing we’re a nation where ‘at half past three, everything stops for tea’ it’s actually become somewhat of a luxury or a rarity in fact. Now it would seem only an occasional treat for the British but here at The Marygreen Manor, we’re determined to keep the British tradition alive. Served daily, our Afternoon Tea is a real ‘must do’ experience that simply can’t be missed when you’re in Brentwood, Essex. It’s so good in fact that people have travelled miles to our wonderful manor house for our Afternoon Tea specifically. Enjoy our fresh arrangement of sandwiches, hand-made scones along with a variety of cakes and pastries that have all been exquisitely prepared by the finest chefs in Essex. You don’t have to be a tourist to want to indulge in a little of our wonderful British tradition.

Afternoon Tea

Anyone for tea?

Marygreen Tea

Afternoon Tea at Marygreen Manor Hotel

No one can question the British obsession with tea drinking and what better way to enjoy our favorite beverage than as part of a delicious afternoon tea experience; but what are the origins of this famous institution?

Afternoon tea, believed to have been introduced by Anna, the seventh Duchess of Bedford, first became fashionable in the early 1840’s and was developed to offer some light sustenance between lunch and dinner, which was normally served at 8pm.  These dressy affairs, necessitating gloves, hats and long flowing gowns, were normally held in the drawing room between 4pm – 5pm.  Tea imported from India and Ceylon was poured into delicate bone china cups from beautifully ornate sliver teapots.  The tea was accompanied by a selection of delicate finger sandwiches and a delicious selection of dainty sweet pastries and cakes the inclusion of scones, clotted cream and fruit preserves were added much later in the 20th century. Originally small, social gatherings these events blossomed in to larger scale formal occasion known as “Tea Receptions” with upwards of 200 attendees!

Nowadays afternoon tea is seen a lovely way to celebrate birthdays, anniversaries, baby showers and any other celebration you can think of but do you really need an excuse to spend a few hours of pure indulgence with your friends?

At Marygreen Manor afternoon tea is served between 2.30 – 4.40 Monday-Saturday and 4.30 – 6.30 on Sundays. If you’re feeling particularly special you can always enhance your tea with a glass or two of something cool, crisp and bubbly!

Could this be the best afternoon tea in Brentwood:

Why not try it at home:

Want to know more:

%d bloggers like this: