Hadstock Society


Aims and objectives


The Hadstock Society was founded as a Civic Trust registered Amenity Society. It aims to stimulate public interest in the natural and built heritage of the Parish of Hadstock, and to preserve, develop and improve historic and other features in the ‘area of benefit’.


The Constitution of the Society, as amended in November 2014, can be viewed by clicking here.


The Hadstock Society Committee meets several times a year to review progress on existing projects, to consider possible new projects, and to provide comments on planning applications to the Uttlesford Planning Department.  An AGM is held every November.


Current projects


Working with the Hadstock/Ashdon Millennium Group commemorating the Battle of Assandun in 1016 and building of a minster in 1020 by King Cnut. A series of events is planned in 2016 in both villages.


Recording medieval field names in the parish.


Carbon dating of Saxon mortar samples taken from Hadstock Church


Classification of archaeological finds obtained from field walks


Cataloguing of local and national history books held by the Society in the Village Hall.


Search for the Site of the Battle of Assandun

            The Heritage Lottery Fund awarded the Hadstock Society a grant of £7,300 in 2015 to carry out a geophysical survey of Red Field.  Last October, thanks to John Barker, farmer and owner of the field, Magnitude Surveys Ltd. carried out magnetic fluxgate gradiometer, and electromagnetic induction surveys of a large part of the field.  As we expected, the infill of the old railway line interfered badly with the results near its course, but two possible burial pits were found, which will need further examination.   We hope to have a Dig in 2017 after harvest.  We are also investigating the chance of trying deep ground radar, taking vertical “slices” in the pits, which might show up burials better.


            There was also a lot of evidence for probably Iron Age and Roman activity.  Sunken Church Field at the Northern edge of the field was the site of the Roman villa and previous aerial photos had shown an Iron Age ring ditch feature in the NE corner.  These results seem to be associated with many years of occupation, perhaps connected with Barham.  There were also signs of mediaeval ridge and furrow ploughing, and field boundaries from many periods. 


            A geophysical survey was also carried out in St. Botolph’s Churchyard by magnetic and earth resistance methods.  Old paths show up quite well and there is strong magnetic disturbance round the Church itself, probably caused when the Building was first put up, but there is some evidence for the original Chancel being nearly 3 metres longer than the present one, as we know from previous results and the measurements given in an 18th Century drawing of its floor plan and graves of past Rectors.



Completed Projects


 1) “Why Hadstock?”


A Local Heritage Initiative grant funded an archeological dig in 2005 to investigate the early history of Hadstock. Information on this project can be found on The Recorders of Uttlesford History website. Click here.


2) Gravestone inscription recording


A survey of all gravestones and permanent monuments in St Botolph’s Church and Churchyard and their inscriptions was carried out in 2009/10. A copy is kept in the Church for people to check on their family memorials and the information can be downloaded from the Hadstock Parish Council website. Click here.  


Information on the Hadstock Society


Contact Hamish McIlwrick  (Chairman) 01223891991 or Richard Dolby (Secretary) 01223890195.