Category Archives: Orsett

Seaborough Hall

In 1913 Seaborough Hall belonged to the rectory of Limehouse and was occupied by a Mr Francis. The Royal Commission on Historical Monuments records that it had a cross-wing at the west end and inside the building were some old battened doors.

The hall appears on the 1946 Ordnance Survey map where it is shown as being in Orsett. In 1801 it was named Sibbery Hall in a map by William Mudge and is in the same position. It also appears on the 1777 Chapman & Andre map as Seboroin Hall, and again in the same position. However, some documents place it in Mucking – the road between Chadwell and Orsett is the parish boundary between Orsett and Mucking and some arable fields, pasture, and woodland belonging to Seaborough Hall were in Mucking. The Place-Names of Essex lists it in the Mucking section and gives two possible derivations for the name – Seven barrows or Seofa’s Hill.

The name is recorded in the 13th century and intermittently thereafter. It is occasionally called a manor, but there is little evidence that enjoyed this legal status, although the name “hall” is often given to a Manor House. Seaborough Hall was on the western side of the road from Chadwell to the Orsett Cock. Today, at the side of the road, there is the remnant of a stone wall. Beyond the wall there is rubble from a demolished building. This rubble is all that remains of Seaborough Hall.

Items from the military career of Sir Francis Whitmore

Earlier in the year, the Thurrock Local History Society was contacted by a lady from Orsett who believed she had a wooden chest that had belonged to Colonel Sir Francis Whitmore. It had come with the property when they bought it about 20 years ago. She was in the process of selling her house and associated buildings and wondered whether anyone in Thurrock was interested in the chest.

It was a large wooden chest with a metal lining, probably lead. There were small ventilation grills near the bottom at each end. It appeared to be in good condition. The outbuildings were part of the Orsett Fruit Farm and it may have been used at one time for storing fruit.

Inside there were named bags for Lt Col Whitmore, and for Major Whitmore as well as 2 – 3 incomplete tents, together with an incomplete campaign table and bed. The chest and contents have been donated to the Purfleet Heritage & Military Centre. It is hoped that they can form part of an exhibit in the Heritage Zone at this year’s Orsett Show.

We are very grateful to Mrs Frances Schwar for donating these items and ensuring they remain part of Thurrock’s heritage. We are pleased that the Purfleet Heritage & Military Centre has been able to provide them a new home.