Milton Hall
Milton Hall known as Nazareth House, was formerly the manor house of the manor of Milton, owned by the Priory of Holy Trinity, Canterbury. The Manor was certainly held by the Priory in pre- Norman times and a monastic cartulary ascribes the grant to a certain Leofchild in 822. A confirmation charter of Edward the Confessor contains this emphatic curse: “If anyone shall hereafter presume to alter the same let him be for ever anathematized and damned with the traitor Judas.” In the Middle Ages the manor was managed by a bailiff, who was answerable to the Priory for the proceeds in money rents and agricultural produce. In the time of Henry VIII the total annual value from all these sources amounted to £30. The buildings included a hall, rebuilt in 1305 at the cost of over £30, a grange, dairy and outhouse, sheepcote, pigeon house, stables and carthouse; there were also the bailiff’s quarters and at one time, a private chapel or oratory. The Prior, as Lord of the Manor, had extensive privileges and franchises, including the right to a court and gallows. Corn for the Canterbury monks was sent by ship from Stratende (the Old Town at Southend), Millflete a landing place on the shore), or from Cricksea, on the Crouch. The whole of the foreshore belonged to the Manor and the very valuable mussel fishery thereon yielded an annual rent of the £2. The Manor suffered severely in 1327 from an inundation which flooded 280 acres of pasture land and destroyed a tidal water mill. In the reign of Henry VIII it passed into the possession of the Rich family and subsequently into that of the Scrattons. At the sale of the estate in 1871 the house was purchased for use as a school but later came into the ownership of the Sisters of Nazareth, who kept it as an orphanage and home for the aged and infirm. The original building has almost entirely vanished, so great have been the additions. In the crypt of the church attached lie the remains of Mr. Clement Scott, author of the once well known song, “The Garden of Sleep,” and Bishop Bellord, a war tried Army chaplain. It was upon land originally belonging to to this estate that the L. M. & S. Station (London, Tilbury and Southend Railway) was built, and the first great section of agricultural land in the parish which was utilized for building purposes. Milton Hall is marked on Norden’s Map of Essex 1594.

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