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60 Years: WAHS Honours The Queen

Waltham Abbey Historical Society was founded during the first year of the Queen’s reign, and is proud to have been invited to submit a short report of our accomplishments to the Royal Archaeological Institute.

In honour of the Diamond Jubilee of their Patron, Her Majesty The Queen, the Institute is hosting reports from local societies on its website, to mark their proudest archaeological or historical achievements of the past 60 years.

Submissions will be judged, and the best awarded a prize, which will be presented to the winning society at Current Archaeology's 2013 LIVE! Conference.


We were one of the first societies to submit a report and it can be seen on the Royal Archaeological Institute’s website at

We have also placed it onto this website here, and you can also download a PDF printable version here.


We have made a great many significant discoveries of local and national importance over the years, and you can read all about the most notable ones in our report, including the discovery of no less than three pre-Conquest predecessors to the present Norman church, the first one being dated to the early 7th century.

Great success was also had in discovering features of the succeeding Norman church and then the Augustinian abbey. You can read about our finds, including an Anglo-Saxon book clasp, a lead bulla of Pope Alexander III, docks on Longpool and the Cornmill Stream, a statue of the Madonna dressed in c.1380 garb, an Iznik plate, and a medieval piscina discovered behind a monument of AD 1600.

Read also about our discovery of the Moot Hall, Tovi's turf-walled hunting lodge, a screens-passage house belonging to Henry VIII, and two pre-Conquest churches with 192 burials at Nazeingbury.

Documentary research has also reaped rich rewards for us, including identifying the reason why the rod is 16'6" long, and locating a document from the reign of the East Saxon king Suebred which granted permission to erect the Nazeingbury religious house.

We are also proud of our role in engaging with the community, including establishing a local museum, which was adopted by the District Council and has now flourished as the Epping Forest District Museum for over 30 years.


Other submissions to the Royal Archaeological Society's Diamond Jubilee competition can be seen at

For more information please Contact WAHS




Copyright Waltham Abbey Historical Society, 2007.