Local History Week

Maldon is an historic maritime and market town of some 15,000 people in the County of Essex, situated on the Blackwater estuary. It is an ancient Anglo-Saxon burgh that was granted a Royal Charter by Henry II in 1171. From the Iron Age, it has been settled by the Romans, Saxons, Vikings and Normans and is the site of the famous Battle of Maldon fought between Vikings and the native Anglo-Saxons in 991AD. Today, Maldon is world famous for many things, such as the Maldon Mud race run in May, Maldon salt and the Thames barges that still sail from the Hythe.

Following the success of last years first Local History week event, Maldon’s Heritage venues have been working together to present a week of activities for all ages, with support from Maldon Town Council. 

There are lots of activities planned for May Half-Term, see below for more information 

This Grade 1 listed Church with its unique triangular tower has a beautifully designed 13th century shingled spire with eight bell ropes. The Church is open for visitors to see its famous Washington Window. Outside the church are statues commemorating St Mellitus, St Cedd Earl Byrhtnoth, Robert D’Arcy and Dr Thomas Plume. In front of the church is the Grade II listed Water Trough which commemorates the life of Lucy Hicks, a local Quaker. The town’s war memorial was funded by public subscription.


Opening: Daily 08.30am – 6pm

Berthed at the picturesque town of Maldon in Essex with its wonderful collection of Thames Sailing Barges, Brent has been a much loved local landmark for over 40 years. Built for the Admiralty in 1945, Brent was launched too late for the War effort and was sold on instead to the Port of London Authority. Used to help maintain the Thames as a navigable waterway and to tow lighters and barges full of cargo between ships and warehouses in London Docks, she was on retirement in 1970, the last PLA steam vessel left in service.

Opening: 27th, 28th, 30th May and 2nd June

Entry: tbc

Discover the secret world of spies, their weapons, gadgets and disguises. Learn about WW2’s Special Operation Executive (S.O.E) and about British Special Forces and their brave and daring operations. See stunning displays of uniforms; be astonished by one of Europe’s largest public displays of firearms. Squirm at battlefield medical equipment; learn the personal stories behind the medals and read intimate diary accounts of British soldiers. Dress up in armour; carry equipment of today’s soldiers. See tanks, swords, armour and much, much more!


Opening: 29th May to 2nd June: 10.30am – 5pm
Access: Wheelchair accessible
Entry: Adult £5.75; OAP £4.75; Child £4; Family £18

There is always something to see whatever the season – the garden looks interesting even in January/February when the viburnums are covered in pink scented blossoms. A little later there are cyclamen to see and many bulbs in the grass and also coming up through the gravel paths. Then there will be the blossom on the fruit trees and the usual summer flowers. Even if there are not too many flowers around, it is still pleasant to wander around and have a sit down to enjoy the peaceful atmosphere. There is no charge for admission but donations would be welcomed.

The garden is normally open for visitors on the FIRST SUNDAY of every month (Sunday 2nd June for Local History week) from 10.00am to 4.00pm. (But 10.00am to 3.00pm in November to March)

The closing time may depend on the weather or the number of volunteers there. On these days we gather for a general working party and helpers and visitors are welcome. Parties from local schools or other groups are a regular feature and such visits on other days can be made by prior arrangement.

Maldon Embroidery, heritage and history displays, art exhibitions, craft shop, books, cards, Maldon Society photographic and video archive, local history Oral Listening.  The children’s activities will run all day 28 May – 1 June 11.00 – 4.00, for minimum £1 donation each child. 

The Maeldune Centre is closed on Monday 27 May. 

Talks on Maldon Embroidery, candle rolling and variety of children activities.


Entry free – donations welcome

~  ~  ~  ~  ~

HISTORY WEEK – Candle rolling, just £2.50 (to cover materials):

28 May 2.00 to 4.00
29 May 11.00 to 1.00
31 May 11.00 to 1.00
1 June 11.00 to 2.00


Maldon Museum holds a fascinating collection reflecting the social, domestic and industrial history of Maldon and the surrounding district, and provides a wonderful insight into Maldon’s maritime past. Lots of children’s activities.


Access: Disabled access to ground floor only. Film coverage of other exhibits
Entry: Adult (18+) £2; free admission child under 17 accompanied by an adult

Maldon’s Moot Hall is among the earliest decorated brick buildings in Essex and has served as a police station, courthouse and council chamber. Guides will be on hand to explain the history of the building. 
30th May to 1st June – Tours between 11am – 12.30pm,
Access: RESTRICTED. Upper floors via a steep spiral staircase
Entry: Adults £4, Conc £3, children (5-16) £2, under 5’s free

Explore the history of this former Water Pumping Station which contains a fascinating collection of heritage industrial machinery and tools, working overhead machine shop and largest working steam pump in Essex.  Explore and discover Summer Fun Science Works
Access: wheelchair accessible
Entry: Adults £5; Conc £4.50; Child 5-15 inc £2; under 5’s Free. 

Thomas Plume’s Library was founded in 1704 under the terms of Dr Plume’s will. He bequeathed to his native town his collection of some 8,100 books and pamphlets, to be kept in a building which he had constructed from the ruins of the old St Peter’s Church in the centre of the town. It remains a working Library to this day, some 2,000 books having been added to the original collection.

Opening: 28th May to 30th May, 2pm – 4pm and 1st June, 10am – noon
Access: RESTRICTED via steep and narrow spiral staircase
Max 12 people at any one time
Entry: Free

Situated in an unexpected oasis of tranquillity on Spital Road is one of Maldon’s best kept archaeological secrets. The chapel was founded to provide services to the lepers and became a general hospital for the poor and infirm. It was connected to Beeleigh Priory and, following the dissolution of the monasteries, served as a farm building for many centuries until work commenced to restore the ruins in the 1920s. The remains of St Giles represent the town’s only standing Scheduled Ancient Monument: most of the existing structure dates from the 12th Century and contains Roman bricks. This peaceful enclave is the perfect spot to while away a contemplative hour.


Representatives will be present on Thursday 30th May to show visitors around talk about the history.

Children’s Day – A fun and educational experience aboard “Centaur” for all children age 5 – 11, learning to be a bargeman Art activities – help raise the foresail – learn to tie knots – understand the tools used by the bargemen, explore the barge above and below deck with an activity pack.

Opening: Thursday 30th May, 11am – 4pm
Entry: Free (donations are welcome) all children must be accompanied by an adult