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Epping has actually had four Charters granted for it’s Market.  The first was granted in 1253 by King Henry III to the Abbott of Waltham Abbey for a Market at Epping Heath.  This original Market was, like today’s, held on a Monday.


In 1575, Queen Elizabeth I granted a Charter to a Mr Thomas Heneage to hold a market on a Friday in the Manor of Epping. Heneage was born at Copped Hall and was a Privy Councillor to Henry VIII and a member of Queen Elizabeth’s Court, being appointed Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster in 1590.


The third Charter was granted in 1683 by King Charles II to Thomas Grey.  We do not have details as to exactly who Thomas Grey was, although there was a Thomas Grey, 2nd Earl of Stamford who was a contemporary of Charles II.  If anyone can help us with this information we would be grateful. This charter allowed markets to be held on Thursdays.

The 4th and final charter, which moved the market day officially back to Monday was granted in 1930 by King George V to Ernest Whythes, well known as the last inhabitant of Copped Hall and the man who paid for the construction of the Church Tower of St Johns, amongst other things.

The powers of the Manor including the Market were passed to the Epping Urban District Council and the market subsequently to the Town Council.

A full transcript of the charter can be accessed below:

[link to charter transcript]






Last week Epping Forest District Council offered the Cottis Lane Car Park to the Town Council as an alternative location for the Town Market on July 7th as the High Street will not be available.

The Town Council consulted with the market traders, and over 75% of them (representing 82% of the number of stalls) voted against holding the market in the Car Park.

Town Mayor, Will Breare-Hall said “The Town Council sought permission to move the market to Cottis Lane because we considered it important to support the traders, on what will be one of the busiest days in Epping for many years. However, our consultation with them revealed that they don’t wish us to pursue this option further and we respect their decision.”

Responses from Market Traders:

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The Town Mayor, Will Breare-Hall, received a response today to his letter requesting compensation for Epping Market Traders who will lose business due to the cancellation of the Town Market on July 7th:

Dear Will,

Essex County Council (ECC) recognises the Tour de France (TdF) event will have to implement road closures to ensure the race can happen safely across the Essex route. This unfortunately will cause disruption to Epping Town Council’s Monday market, which we have been advised by crowd and traffic management experts, means it will not be safe for the market to operate that day. Although this major event is for one day only, we are working in partnership with Epping Forest District Council to identify if there is a viable solution for the market for that day. 

Unfortunately, compensation is not available for the whole of the three stages of the event. The event is funded by budget from central government and managed by the TdFHub, a government limited company. ECC is not the lead organiser responsible for the event. However, we are working closely with key partners including Yorkshire, Cambridge and TDF Hub 2014 to successfully deliver this major sporting event and minimise disruption to residents and businesses wherever possible. The wider benefits of the event include expecting many spectators viewing this once in a lifetime opportunity to see the world class cyclists which we hope will inspire a new generation of people to be more active

We do not have more information about the reference to a “viable solution for the market” as yet, though we are meeting with colleagues from the District Council early next week.  The only possible location for the market that has not already been considered would be the Cottis Lane Car Park, which we have understood was to be open as normal on the day of the race.

The letter also contained some information about the street furniture that is being installed in Epping High Street in May:

With regard to your question regarding street furniture I have spoken with ECC highway officers and the 5 pairs of traffic islands in Epping will be replaced with permanent bolt down islands that can be removed for the Tour de France sprint stage and any event in the future that Epping may hold that requires their removal.

The islands are aesthetically pleasing and are in a granite finish to complement the street scene of Epping. The current islands are in a poor state of repair with varying types of solar and normal electrically powered bollards which are old and require a great deal of maintenance. The new islands will have modern solar powered “keep left” signs with no electrical connection, so are greener, easier and cheaper to maintain.

Kind regards,

Cllr Ann Naylor CC



The Town Council has reluctantly taken the decision to cancel the Monday Market on July 7th, the day Stage 3 of the Tour de France will be passing through the Town.  After receipt of the draft travel and crowd management plan, it became obvious that if the organisers were expecting up to 6,000 people to watch the event from the Market place, there would be no possibility the market could be held.

Essex County Council own the Market place (it is part of the public highway) and they are organising the road closures in conjunction with the event organisers.

The Town Council will be seeking compensation from the Organisers for the loss of the Market on July 7thImage