Local Historian - Rob Butcher 


Rob has kindly shared with the Parish Council a copy of his book on local history, with research he began in lockdown.

There is a link below to his work, for parishoners, residents and those interested in local history to review. 


File: AlresfordBookDraftRJButcherApril14th2023.pdf


Alresford is a village of approximately 2,100 people and is situated about 6 miles from Colchester in the Tendring district. It is believed that the name Alresford  is derived from the Alders that grew alongside the Ford over the creek between the village and Brightlingsea. The 1° East longitude line bisects the village, which is about 51°51" North. The village is well served by public transport having its own railway station on the Clacton branch line with direct services by Greater Anglia to London Liverpool Street (http://www.nationalrail.co.uk/) as well as bus services.


By road take the A133 from Colchester towards Clacton, turning right onto the B1027 towards Wivenhoe then left at the traffic lights toward St. Osyth.

The southern boundary of the village is formed by Alresford Creek, a tributary of the River Colne Estuary that reaches the sea at Brightlingsea. The creek is still navigable at high tide as far as Thorrington Tide Mill and provides mud berths for a number of yachts.

To the west is the town of Wivenhoe, which can be reached by road or a footpath along the dismantled former railway line that follows the river. This line, which opened in 1866 as part of the 'Tendring Hundred Railway' and was known locally as the "Oyster Creek Line", used to go to Brightlingsea via a swing bridge over the Creek and was a victim of Dr Beeching's cuts in 1964. The northern part of Alresford was previously known as Elmstead Heath and the village of Elmstead Market now borders Alresford to the north and west with Frating to the north-east and Thorrington to the south-east.


Alresford is surrounded by current and former gravel workings and the gravel was at one time exported to London and beyond via sailing barges from Alresford Creek. The remains of a conveyor system from the processing plant to the creek can still be seen from the pit to the riverbank.


The centre of the village is now about a mile north of the creek and is split in two by the railway line with two Automated Unmanned Barriers. The main shopping centre, adjacent to the railway station in Station Road, has a General Store, Post Office, Fish-and-Chip shop, a Chinese take-away, Indian take-away and a Carpet shop. The Public House in Alresford is The Pointer in Wivenhoe Road. There are a number of businesses along Main Road (B1027) including another general store, Car Sales, Replacement Windows ,Lawnmower Repairs ,Kennels and a Furniture Shop.


The village has a Primary School that also hosts the Pre-School at the junction of Ford Lane and Church Road. St. Andrew's Church is a modern building that was built in 1976 when St. Peter's Church was tragically destroyed by fire in the early morning of the 2nd October 1971.

The shell of the 12th Century St. Peter's remains in Ford Lane and the graveyard is still in use. Alresford won the 2012 Essex Village of the Year Competition and best kept village in Essex 2013.