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The Medieval Rectory at Clay End

by janet on 22 September 2012 · 3 comments

Walkern’s Medieval Rectory

The rectory before Daniel Gorsuch built the brick rectory for his son John in 1632, was sited within the medieval Walkern Park. The most likely contender for the original building is this house, now two residences, at Clay End. It was built in the 16th century or earlier as an open hall house, but renovated as the two Gothic style houses now seen, in the mid 19th century.



{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Susan Melling (nee Hurley) September 15, 2013 at 8:25 pm

I didn’t realise I had such an interesting home! I always wondered rather, about the number and size of the chimneys for what appeared to be ‘workers’ cottages, but I never dreamed it had been a rectory, or that it was so old. I remember being puzzled, also, by an area at the top of our stairs, which appeared to once have had a doorway through to next door. Should have realised that the house had once been one, not two, dwellings.

Having started life at no. 3 Clay End, I moved to no.5 just before my fifth birthday. A new kitchen extension had been created, and an inside (Elsan) toilet was installed across the hall. Still no bathroom, though, and until around 1959 my sister Elizabeth and I bathed in a galvanised zinc bathtub which was brought in from the outhouse!


Elizabeth Palmer Nee Hurley August 30, 2013 at 1:16 pm

I lived in the house on the left from around 1950 to 1966. My great grandfather and grandfather worked as gardeners for Miss Cotton-Browne. Their surnames were Wing and Cannon respectively. My mother was one of six children:- Jean,Esme,Eric,Ivan,Margaret and John.They lived in the house next to Jack Adams the chauffeur. Following my marriage to Tony Austin in 1966
we lived in the house previously occupied by Jack Adams. It was here that I raised my two sons Richard and Robert who attended Walkern School and then Alleynes School in Stevenage.


Tom McCall March 18, 2013 at 1:45 pm

My great, great grandparents Frederick and Mary-Ann Beadle (and my great grandad Albert) lived in the house on the right in the 1890’s to the early 1900’s and then after moving out of the area for a short period came back again until the early 1940’s. Frederick was Miss Cotton-Browne’s horsekeeper and I believe it was a tied-cottage. I wish this cottage had been owned and stayed in the family it is beautiful.


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