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Ongar area guide

Ongar | CM5

Area Guide

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Ongar Area Info

Ongar Area Info

Ongar is in the county of Essex which lies to the north of the M25 between Chelmsford and Harlow, connected by the A414 which runs directly through it. Ongar – or Chipping Ongar as it’s also known - is a traditional town with a modern metropolitan feel. There remains some evidence of both Tudor and Georgian habitation close to the High Street, and development in Ongar was kept to a minimum until roughly 20 -30 years ago.

Homes in Chipping Ongar are young by comparison to other areas nearby. Residential development only really started to increase with any vigour in the mid 1970’s. Schools in Ongar are all rated Satisfactory or Good in their latest OFSTED review and both faith and non-faith schools are available for primary schools. There is one secondary Academy in Ongar itself, however nearby Brentwood offers a range of secondary schools.

Even Jack Branning in EastEnders wants to move here. And who wouldn’t? After all, the late Roxy and Ronnie Mitchell likened it to a Caribbean Island.

Things To Do In Ongar

Ongar is the Easterly terminus of the Epping Ongar Railway, which runs steam and diesel trains from Epping through North Weald and Blake Hall during the summer months. The Railway Society also run a Heritage bus service connecting Epping Underground station and Shenfield to Ongar and North Weald. They hold special events including driver experiences, Easter egg hunts and murder mysteries.

Budworth Hall is a fine example of 19th Century Gothic architecture and is home to many events in Ongar including the Real Ale festival. Budworth Hall also acts as the meeting place for clubs and societies including keep-fit, karate and dance classes.

Zinc Arts Centre is a charity which promotes empowerment for those with learning difficulties and disabilities through the arts and entertainment. They stage theatre productions, exhibitions and workshops, the proceeds of which help to fund their work.

Theydon Bois

4 Forest Drive
Theydon Bois
CM16 7EY
01992 667 666

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History of Ongar

Chipping Ongar refers to the historic town of Castle Ongar but the new name was assumed in the 14th Century and relates to the market that was held there. In 1162 Richard de Lucy, Chief Justice of England built Ongar Castle here. It stood until its demolition in the 16th century and all that remains now is the motte (the mound) and the moat. Sadly, as the land is in privately owned you can’t walk around it but it is visible from the nearby footpath.

The old parish of Chipping Ongar was abolished in the late 1960’s and a new parish of Ongar was created which included nearby Greensted and Shelley. It was assimilated into the Epping Forest district of Essex in 1974.

Thanks largely to the opening of the M11 motorway around the same time, Ongar saw many of its smaller private sector businesses relocate when the focus of trade moved to larger towns like Brentwood and Harlow. Since then Ongar has concentrated on residential development to carve its niche as a commuter hamlet, whilst still retaining its historic roots.

Ongar Parish
Ongar Parish

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