Ingatestone ‘Saxon’ Dig 14th January. 100 acres of Pasture.

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AT LAST! Lets Go Digging are heading into Essex and the first dig in this area for 2018 is very near Ingatestone and Fryerning. On Sunday the 14th January we have 100 acres of pasture land to detect in an area of Saxon inhabitation.

The Dig will commence at 09:00 and finish at 16:30 and we will have FULL CATERING on this event. HARDSTANDING AVAILABLE!

Ingatestone (anciently Ingerston, Ingerstone, Ingarston, Ingaston, etc.) was stablished in Saxon times  on the Essex Great Road (now the A12) running between the two Roman towns of Londinium (London) and Camulodunum (Colchester).

The name is derived from the Middle English Yenge-atte-Stone. Latinised as Ginge ad Petram, meaning parcel of land at the stone. It was also recorded in the form ‘Gynge atte Stone’ in 1430.

Stone is not prevalent in the local geology making the village’s stone, deposited by glacial action, unusual for the area. A large Sarsen stone can still be seen, split into three pieces, with one being located by the west door of the St Edmund and St Mary’s parish church and one each side of the entrance to Fryerning Lane.

Ingatestone belonged to Barking Abbey from about 950 AD until the Dissolution of the Monasteries, when it was purchased from the Crown by Sir William Petre. Petre, originally a lawyer from Devon, had risen to become the Secretary of State to Henry VIII. He built a large courtyard house, Ingatestone Hall, as his home in the village, along with almshouses which still exist today as private cottages in Stock Lane.

By the time of the Domesday Book in 1086, Fryerning and Ingatestone (Inga) were recorded as being in the Hundred of Chelmsford.

Fryerning is a small village situated approximately 1.5 miles north of Ingatestone in Essex, England. The Parish Church ‘St. Mary the Virgin’ on Blackmore Road dates back from the 11th century, with a 15th-century brick tower and the area has several large woodlands populated by substantial deer herds.

St. Mary the Virgin Parish Church, Fryerning 

A Brief History of the church

In England’s Thousand Best Churches (1999) Simon Jenkins writes, ‘we could be nowhere but Essex. The church sits on a small eminence attended by a grove of Scots pines amid open fields.

Prior to the Norman conquest, a large area south west of Chelmsford was known as Gigingas or Gegingas. This included the syllable ‘ing’ meaning possession and is seen in the names of Ingatestone, Fryerning, Margaretting, Mountnessing and Ingrave. It appears that the Normans divided up the territory and Ingatestone and Fryerning were known collectively as Ging-at-the-stone. Fryerning was given to Robert de Gernon, whose grandson Gilbert Montfitchet granted half the manor of Ginges, together with the church, to the Knights Hospitallers of Jerusalem. The Knights Hospitallers were suppressed in 1540 by Henry V111. The area became the property of Sir William Banners, a royal auditor. It became known as Ging Berners or Ging Fryerne, a reference to the Knights Hospitalers who were known as fratres of friars. In the late 16th century part of the area became the possession of the De Vere family, Earls of Oxford. Thee generations later, William Berner’s great grandson sold Fryerning to Sir Nicholas Wadham. He married Dorothy, daughter of William Petre. This couple founded Wadham College in Oxford. The college have been patrons of the church since 1620 and were involved in the appointment of the present incumbent.

The nave is the oldest part of the building, dating from the 11th century. It is constructed of pudding stone, together with courses of flint and quartz peddles and are three feet thick. There are also occasional courses of Roman tiles. It is know there was a Roman villa in the parish. There are five rounded Norman windows, one bricked up and only visible from the outside.

The font is finely carved from Caen stone from Normandy, where it was probably made. It is 12th century. It has iron staple marks on the top to show it could be locked so that the holy water could not be stolen. These were ordered to be fitted in 1236. It is possible that this font, together with two similar ones at Little Lavers and Abbess Roding, were given to the churches by Matilda, mother of Henry 11. She is known to have given generously to churches and these three churches were all connected with relations or friends of hers. The design on the font are on the north face a Vine, the west a Cross and Crown, on the east a tree of Jesse and the south the Sun, Moon and Stars.

The brick tower was constructed in the early 16th century by the Knights Hospitalers, replacing an earlier wooden one. The bricks are almost certainly of local origin. Two local fields are still known as Brick Kiln Field and Brick Clamp Field. Technical evidence strongly points to the tower having been constructed under Girolamo de Trevizi, architect to Henry V111.

The six bells date from the 16th century. The oldest is the second, made in 1590 by Robert Mot.


So the history is all there for our dig, DONT MISS IT!

The Dig will commence at 09:00 and finish at 16:30 and we will have FULL CATERING on this event.



Ingatestone 14th January 2018


We can only accept more registrations if you are car sharing. If you would like to be added and can car share please message Joanne Boyce or comment on here to be added. Thank you

Registration opens at 04-12-2017 17:52

Registration closes at 11-01-2018 22:00

Max Participants: 110

Registered Users:

  1. clive65
  2. grahamg
  3. Bond
  4. Nails65
  5. NicktheTrick
  6. AndyDigger
  7. Laura
  8. Loaderboi101
  9. Stefan
  10. Maarten
  11. PaulyD
  12. Scottydog
  13. dogass
  14. richmorley
  15. Rambo
  16. rickyfletcher
  17. [email protected]
  18. Hammytime
  19. Burnsy
  20. Junior
  21. Huragan82
  22. Jason69
  23. Fishbowl
  24. Barney2964
  25. Andy68
  26. Kirkyboy
  27. Jaycanham
  28. xenophon
  29. Trevspur
  30. Lukejo
  31. eddiep
  32. Securis
  33. BenCoup
  34. Campaccino1
  35. DanUnder
  36. ukmartian
  37. Minster
  38. Eddiem53
  39. Paulhills
  40. Donnjon
  41. Ctx3030kev
  42. Gillians
  43. Tinhat
  44. Nagrom13
  45. Gaf1075
  46. chriscuddon
  47. Brian81
  48. sweetjustice
  49. Guythegorilla
  50. Christine.turner70
  51. marks
  52. Raptus
  53. markyman123
  54. Darinlummas
  55. Darren1982
  56. Bigt87
  57. JamesG
  58. Petercarpo
  59. Alan88
  60. alanmair
  61. FlorinB
  62. WASKI
  63. Scottyj
  64. Pauloo
  65. grahamlister
  66. Damian
  67. Warner20
  68. Vikingkemp2017
  69. boycey71
  70. normski
  71. Amadeusxp
  72. JamesL
  73. Gdig
  74. alanlloyd
  75. Bargepole
  76. Martinb1979
  77. Broady
  78. Bigboylen
  79. series60nokia
  80. GeoffH
  81. boxsterdigger
  82. broadsmaster
  83. sxsi
  84. Raindog
  85. Humps
  86. chas
  87. amberside
  88. MackemDigger
  89. Goldancekid
  90. Constantine
  91. Officert
  92. DanielFry
  93. cuffs
  94. MarkKiff
  95. Woodybeard
  96. mungogerry99
  97. athelstan
  98. Millsymagic
  99. Danhunt
  100. Baza
  101. Robindones
  102. mkw2592
  103. tazz
  104. Oliver1234
  105. Butlerboy09
  107. DiggyLeigh
  108. Diggermark
  109. Wendy6766
  110. Tonybrentwood

Registration is currently closed.


  1. Profile photo of Clive



    Hi Joanne, could you please add Paul Townhill as well to the list, as he might not be able to register this evening, thanks :-)

      • Profile photo of Joanne Boyce

        Joanne Boyce


        Hi Paul, we advertise the postcode on the evening before the event at around 6pm. The boundaries will be explained on the day at the briefing before the event starts. Thanks

    • Profile photo of Wendy



      Hi Joanne . Can you please put myself and Peter Gibson down for this please can’t seem to register him . Thanks

  2. Profile photo of mark stote

    mark stote


    could you add lee oaker to this dig he has asked to regester to your site a asked to join im going undre markyman123 so can you add lee oaker to the list as he would like a place on this event thank you

  3. Profile photo of Anthony



    Hi Joanna,
    Thought I’d registered but can’t see my name on the list- help please, I don’t want to miss this one!🙏

  4. Profile photo of Trevor Glyne-Phillips

    Trevor Glyne-Phillips


    A chap Ian Millington also wishes to attend . Is it possible to bring a guest. Hes visiting me that week in jan and has never detected in Essex

  5. Profile photo of Anthony



    Hi Joanne,
    Can you confirm I’m booked in please?
    Anthony (Tonybrentwood)

  6. Profile photo of Tom butler

    Tom butler


    Hi me and my cousin would love to come to this is there any chance or has it bin filled

  7. Profile photo of Jamestopley



    Can you add me to the list and I will be sharing a car with someone already on the list?

  8. Profile photo of Mic Card

    Mic Card


    This event says limited numbers of 120, and only 118 are showing, but registration is closed. Can you please add my name to the list? Please, please, please! :)

  9. Profile photo of Reiss



    Hi Joanne

    Can you please add me as a +1 to the list I will be travelling with Chris Cuddon .50 already on the list?

  10. Profile photo of Jay



    Hi Joanne
    Can you add username MJD1301 as my +1 as we’ll be car sharing.
    Thanks in advance


  11. Profile photo of Kirk



    2 of us are coming in 1 motor just to let you know cheers 👍👍

  12. Profile photo of Ben



    Hi Joanne if a place comes available could I be added please

  13. Profile photo of Mick Moylan

    Mick Moylan


    Hi Joanne not sure if you have reserve places, but if so can you add me please, its not far from home and would make a change to have only a 30min drive, plus digmeup & sidiggerm (if 3 become available)

  14. Profile photo of Bob



    Can’t seem to log out of the rally. I WILL NOT BE ABLE TO ATTEND. 12/12/17. Cheers. Junior.

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