Guildhall Finchingfield

Living History

Drawing class with Jane Pirie, a great success

kiki woodComment

Janie Pirie SBA specialises in floral and botanical art using coloured pencils. Her meticulously drawn and striking compositions have immensely accurate detail and great depth and intensity of colour.

Sampford WI held a day long workshop at the Guildhall, surrounded by Helga Crouch pictures for inspiration.  Jane gave her students an insight into drawing flowers and foliage with pencils and teaching techniques that she uses when creating her wonderful drawings.  

We hope to see her again soon, hopefully for an exhibition too!

To see more of her work click the link here Jane Pirie

Helga Crouch Exhibition

kiki woodComment

We are delighted that Helga Crouch will be exhibiting at the Guildhall From the end of April to mid may.  For further details check out the events page on this website.

World War Two exhibition

kiki woodComment

The Guildhall are planning to mount an exhibition in May to conincide with 70 years since VE day.  We would love to display photos, letters and artifacts from people in and around the village.  Anything that is connected to the Second World War would be great.  

Dig for victory

So if you think you can help please contact Kiki Wood on 01371 811333 or through our contact page on the website.

Not only are we having an exhibition but would like to have a street party as part of the  celebrations, so useful tips on authentic recipes would also be great.

Community fair 2014

kiki woodComment

We are holding our first community fair on 14th December at the Guildhall.  This is a FREE event to bring together community groups, societies,  and small businesses without premises.  Would you like to let more people come see what you have to offer, or just a chance to meet more like minded folk. 

Contact us at the Guildhall to save a space at the fair.  01371 811 333 or through our contact page on this website.

community fair.jpg

New exhibits arrive in the museum

kiki woodComment

We have been kindly donated two fascinating sticks by Joan King.  The first is a Witch stick found in a wall of her father, Daniel Peddar's 17th century thatched cottage a couple of miles out of the village.  Daniel Peddar said his great, great grandmother's sister had been beaten to death as a witch.  He believed the stick was then put in the wall where he found it.  The second exhibit to be donated is a fertility stick found in the middle of the thatched roof of the same cottage.  The burnt in designs feature butterflies, birds and flowers.

The restored Guildhall library's first birthday

kiki woodComment

The Guildhall celebrated the first  birthday of the Library in the newly restored Guildhall.  Jackie Bargman catered par excellence and Linda Turner hosted the lunchtime celebration.


A new donation box at the Guildhall

kiki woodComment

Now that that entry to the museum is free, we decided to design our very own donation box. The box is based on one of the puppies from 101 Dalmatians. Author Dodie Smith lived locally and there is an exhibit all about her in the museum. So come along and pop a penny or two in the Dalmatian. 

First we laser cut ply into the Dalmatian shape, and then we gave several coats of paint.  We glued all the elements together, and painted the pups features and spots. 

French Lessons

french lessonskiki woodComment

Would you be interested in learning or brushing up your French language skills? At the Guildhall, we are proposing to run daytime classes in French and would like to gauge the level at which there would be the most interest. The selection would be; Beginners, an introduction to the essentials for getting the most from your holiday in France and French speaking countries, to, Intermediate, a follow on course for those with a reasonable working level of French, we will revise and consolidate your existing language skills and build on them with the aim of improvement, so developing conversational ability and linguistic confidence. Advanced, a class aimed at those with a good level of confidence in their conversational ability, as well as in literary comprehension. The aim will to be to practice and improve your level of conversation as well as to improve your level of literary dexterity.  Please contact the Guildhall to express the level that would be of most interest to you and we will forward details in due course.


Crafting and sewing workshop

kiki woodComment

On Thursday we had the first Crafting and sewing evening with tea cakes and plenty of chat. Why not come to the next one 18th of September from 7.30-9.30pm

£5.00  contact us to reserve your place

Jamie Harper-Ptolomey nominated for awards

kiki woodComment

Jamie Harper-Ptolomey  is the young man who was the pargetting apprentice on the Guildhall restoration.  He has been nominated for the  English Heritage Angel awards, and has also been shortlisted as part of "best craftsmanship by a trainee on a heritage rescue"  involving the guildhall, If you would like to vote for Jamie please click on the  link  for the English Heritage  Angel awards, where you can vote for him/ the guildhall as your favourite project.

Jamie earlier this year repairing the Guildhall Church hill facade

Jamie earlier this year repairing the Guildhall Church hill facade

Sunday 6th July Spains Hall gardens and house open.

kiki woodComment

FINCHINGFIELD residents are revving up their preparations, ready to welcome the Tour de France to the village on Monday, July 7.

On Sunday, villagers will be showing off the parish's unique heritage with tours of Spains Hall.

And on the race day itself the newly restored Guildhall will be open from 2pm to 5pm to provide a pop up café with refreshments. The museum will also be open and will allow visitors to about the village and its history. There is a fancy dress area for children.

The Grade I listed Guildhall has been at the centre of village life for hundreds of years since it was built in 1470 while there has been a house on the site of Spains Hall for nearly 10 centuries. The hall is named after Hervey de Ispania, who held the manor at the time of the Domesday Book in 1086, and it has been owned by only three families ever since.

The Elizabethan house was purchased by Samuel Ruggles in 1760, a clothier from the nearby town of Bocking, and it remains his descendants home, although also boast public roms for weddings and corporate events.

The gardens will be open from 2pm to 5pm and includes a woodland walk while house tours will take place at 2.30pm, 3.30pm and 4.30pm, each lasting about 50 minutes at a cost of £4 (£2 children) for the garden plus £3 (£1.50 child) for the house.

Visit the Guildhall on 7th July for the Tour de France

kiki woodComment

The Guildhall will be open from 2-5pm. After the main event why not come and enjoy the  interactive museum. Relax in the medieval surroundings of the Guildroom  listening to great French tunes, and taste our homemade cakes. Watch out for our hand pointing signs around the village. 

The local children have an impromptu picnic after a visit to the museum

The local children have an impromptu picnic after a visit to the museum

Wine tasting

kiki woodComment

Last week we had our first wine tasting hosted by wine expert Neil Bull. We all enjoyed the evening and tasted a variety of wine followed by home made quiche.  The feed back was so positive we are planning further wine events.  

Neil Bull surrounded by ladies of the Parish!

Photo shoot

kiki woodComment

Last week we spent 3 days on our photo shoot for the brochure and website.  It was a great success, and we are looking forward to seeing the results from our wonderful photographer Colin Turner.  Fuelled by homemade cake and tea, Colin shot our wedding setting, cafe, exhibition space, workshops, library and museum.  We were joined by three special volunteers who worked their socks off, as models, stylists and general helpers.  Special thank you to Lesley Lewis, Alison King and Emily Deane. Local children and their parents populated the museum and library, and we even shot an impromtu picnic outside the Guildhall.  Local companies Lottie Mutton  provided wonderful props and lisa Green from Cherry picked flowers did our flowers. Fleur de lys Bridal dressed our bride and bridesmaid. Crockery and tableware from Occasions. Table and linen from Sitting Pretty.  Sonia Villers loaned her fab paintings too for which we were very grateful!

 Thanks to everyone who took part.

Award-winning spot to view the Tour de France?

kiki woodComment

Finchingfield Guildhall is available for private hire when the Tour de France

passes through Essex on Monday 7 July. The recently restored 15th-century

Guildhall with all-important road frontage on the race route and a commercial

quality kitchen comfortably seats 35 or 80 for drinks. Offering a corporate or

private hirer an exceptional opportunity.

Jeremy Toynbee, trustee, said ‘Finchingfield is preparing itself for large

numbers of Tour fans, and the Guildhall would offer a wonderful haven at the

centre of the village on this busy and exciting day. Located on the steep rise of

Church Hill, the riders be at their slowest as they pass by.’

Contact us for further information

View up the hill in Finchingfield

View up the hill in Finchingfield

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