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Prittlewell, an ancient village, known in the raign of King Edward the Confessor, is the other parish of Southend, in the Rochford hundard and union. Rochester dicese, Essex Archeaconry, and Canewdon deanery, South Essex, on the road from Southend to Rochford, 1 mile north of Southend, 3 miles south of Rochford, 15 miles south-east of Billericay, and 40 miles form London. It receives its name from a well at the Priory, feeds several fishponds. The whole parish contains 5,248 acres; the population in 1861 was 3,334. The village consists of two streets on the slope of a hill, at right angles with each other, and having the church at thejuction, on the top of the hill.
[Kelly's Directory of Essex, 1862]

"PRITTLEWELL, a parish in the hundred of ROCHFORD, county of ESSEX, 19 miles (S. E.) from Chelmsford, containing, with Milton, 1922 inhabitants. The living is a vicarage, in the archdeaconry of Essex, and diocese of London, rated in the king's books at £18.13.4., and in the patronage of the Bishop of London. The church, dedicated to St. Mary, is a handsome structure in the later English style of architecture, with a fine pinnacled tower, which serves as an excellent sea-mark. The parish borders on the Thames, and includes Southend, a noted bathing-place, a short distance above which is Crow Stone, marking the extreme eastern boundary of the jurisdiction of the lord mayor of London, as conservator of the river. A Cluniac priory, in honour of St. Mary, and subordinate to the abbey of Lewes in Sussex, was founded here, in the reign of Henry II., by Robert Fitz-Swaine, which at the dissolution had a revenue of £194. 14. 3. Mrs. Scrattons and others gave a house and land in support of a free school for sixteen poor children." [From Samuel Lewis A Topographical Dictionary of England (1831) - copyright Mel Lockie 2016]

"MILTON, a hamlet in the parish of PRITTLEWELL, hundred of ROCHFORD, county of ESSEX, ¾ of a mile (S. by E.) from Prittlewell, with which the population is returned. This hamlet is situated on the coast, and was once a distinct parish, which has been encroached on by the sea; at low water some remains of the church were visible not long since. Here are fine beds of oysters." [From Samuel Lewis A Topographical Dictionary of England (1831) - copyright Mel Lockie 2016]



  • Census returns are available from the usual sources for 1841-1911, which includes most copies held at the ERO, Wharf Rd, Chelmsford. More information on other ways to view these census returns on the Essex

Description and Travel

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Historical Geography

  • Prittlewell was a member of the Rochford Hundred

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Poor Houses, Poor Law etc.

  • Prittlewell was a member of the Rochford Poor Law Union