Onehouse Village Trail
The Churchyard Entrance
Hi! My name is Stephen and I would like to share with you some of the things, that I have found out about Onehouse village during the last 30 years that I have lived here.
Even though I have looked at the history of many Suffolk villages I still feel there is nowhere quite like this village. As we pass through the village I will point out some of the interesting sites, and share some stories about them.
This is a village that has scarcely changed from 1066 until 1970, how often can you say that?
You should be standing in the churchyard, facing the main door to the church.
Before we set off, let's spend some time here in the churchyard looking at the Church with the round tower on the left.
This church is built in flint and is dedicated to St John the Baptist. Round towers are rare, they are only found in East Anglia (Norfolk and Suffolk) and in Scandinavia.
The church tower has had many problems over the years and nearly collapsed during repair work done in the 1970s. The decision was taken to reduce the size of the tower so as to reduce the stresses in the building. The white and cream brickwork shows the repairs made by the Victorians before that.
Before the Normans came and built in flint, this was a rectangular wooden Church with a thatch roof. It was owned by a Saxon Theign in 1066 and he most likely died at the Battle of Hastings. He lived in the hall behind you, called Onehouse Hall. You might just see some tiles and a chimney. We are not allowed down there.
It was the only building with one large hall hereabouts, so it was called Onehouse. One Hus, meaning One Hall. We call it "wunnus", the same way as the Saxons did. It was added to and by the reign of Elizabeth I it was thought of as the prettiest site in the local area. It is easy to see how the hall, the woods, the church and meadows leading down to a stream made it a very desirable place then, and still is now. They dismantled those original buildings and replaced it with today's grand farmhouse. The dismantled buildings were reused in other halls in nearby estates.
So, let's get going!
Just follow the path to your right around the churchyard to the other side of the church.
We're heading over to the hedge behind the church.
While you walk, let me briefly explain how VoiceMap works.
It uses your location to play audio automatically, at the right time and place. This means that you can put your phone away now. Don't worry if I'm silent for a while, when I'm not giving directions or telling stories. There's a map on your screen if you ever feel lost, and if you do get way off track without noticing, VoiceMap will let you know.
You'll see the graves ahead of you on your left. Look for the distinctive Service man's grave from the war years near the hedge. I'll meet you there.