EARLS COLNE HERITAGE MUSEUM
The Old Water Tower
Earls Colne Colchester CO6 2SZ
The stretch of road from the river to Church Hill became divided into ‘Lower’ and ‘Upper’ Holt Street when name boards first appeared in the 1960s. Lower Holt Street had several small shops in earlier times, including Mrs Proctor’s bakery and tea rooms.
Charles Tyler, who came to Earls Colne in 1894, had his first chemist’s shop in Lower Holt Street until he moved to the present-
Behind the brick wall which runs the length of Lower Holt Street is the Victorian house known as ‘Colne Priory’, built near the site of the Benedictine monastery which was founded in 1100.
Sir Reuben and Lady Hunt, who owned the house until the late 1960s, are seen here standing on the terrace overlooking the garden.
In 2008, a ground-
On the sharp bend that separates Upper and Lower Holt Street stands the inn which had been known as ‘The George’ since at least the 16th century. After several recent changes of name, it now advertises itself as ‘Oxford House’.
The view from the corner of Coggeshall Road in 1930 shows the houses in Upper Holt Street. Half-
Two Colne men, Messrs. Ted Scillitoe and Harold Cutting wrote a poem to commemorate that fateful evening back in 1923 and it has fortunately been preserved for posterity. So read on and re-
The Wreck of the Maltings
One winter’s eve at seven fifteen
A ruddy glow in the heavens was seen
And, upon investigation,
The Maltings were found in conflagration.
A noted lady inhabitant
Was rushing to and fro
She was all of a fear and tremble
As the Maltings began to glow
She ran up to Bob Burton
For the Fire Brigade rushed he
But before he had made much progress
He met with a calamity
He jumped on his cycle
But his eyes were dazzled with fire
He hit old Welham in the back
And they both fell in the mire
Whilst the Maltings were Blazing
And the flames were rising high
Fireman Hales was having his hair cut
At Osborne's saloon nearby
Priory Garage was opened by Bill Poulter just after the First World War. Before petrol pumps were installed, petrol was sold by the can to early motorists who might have along search to find another filling station.
Pound Green, at the junction between Upper Holt Street and Coggeshall Road, takes its name from the ‘pound’, or enclosure, where stray farm animals were held until they were claimed by their owners.
The pump in the centre of the Pound green was donated by Mrs Gee of Colne House in 1853 “in thankful commemoration for the absence of cholera”. Unfortunately, despite the good intentions, the water from the pump proved to be undrinkable.
He rushed out into the open
And with a sigh he said
‘Rather than go to Chandlers
I’ll have a pint instead.’
Jack Reed, another member,
Sat by his fireside yawning
Imagine his amazement
When he heard of the fire next morning.
“All hands to pumps!” cried Moger.
But volunteers were few
Till up stepped Arthur Kentfield
When of the pay he knew.
His name was Cockerel Kentfield
A stalwart man was he
The finest man in Tiger Row
That you did ever see
Then on his cycle rode up Jack Dixey
To deliver pork was his intent
But his front wheel got mixed up with the hose
The Halstead Brigade appeared upon the scene
And the cheering it was great
Oh, what was the use of shouting
It was only two hours late
Then and Now