We filmed this video in 2013, please be aware it is not of current standards
Southchurch Hall is a moated house, clearly rather grand, dating back to the Middle Ages (14th Century) with extensions added in the Tudor era and 1930s. The de Southchurch family were the original residents of the house, and its great hall was likely to have been built on the site of a Saxon hall. Solars were medieval private rooms used to retreat from the publicity of the more social hall. Essentially ‘solars’ are comparable to the bedrooms or studies we have in our houses today. It became more fashionable to have one’s privacy in the 16th and 17th Century and the second South solar was built around this time as an extension to the great hall.
Today the building is decked out how it might have looked in its respective heydays, and well worth a visit. It doesn’t have many artefacts on display around the house, instead it is more of a glimpse into the past via reconstruction of decor amongst the original building. The gift shop room (a 1930s extension) is however an impressive more museum-like exhibition of various artefacts including the 1969 Alan Sorrell painting Attack on Southchurch Hall during the Peasants’ Revolt, 1381 depicting the moment the peasants revolting from the Essex side of the Thames made an attack on the wealthy hall and its owners.