A walk through the lost Hamlet of Snaresbrook on the edge of Epping Forest, now a part of the parish of Wanstead in the London Borough of Redbridge. We cross Leyton Flats to the Eagle Pond and look at the Eagle Pub (currently closed due to Coronavirus). Here we see a section of the Sayers Brook or Sayes Brook that gives Snaresbrook its name. We also see Snaresbrook Crown Court which was built in 1841 as the Infant Orphan Asylum. In the video I describe the building as Gothic, but my friend Andrew Stevens texted to correct me saying that it is in fact Jacobethan.
From here we walk along Woodford Road to look at the modernist wonder of Hermitage Court before walking down Eagle Lane to Falcon Close. I ponder upon the idea of Hauntology, a term first used by Jacques Derrida but popularised by cultural theorist Mark Fisher particularly in relation to music. Fisher spoke of “the failure of the 21st Century to really arrive” and now in the 21st Century we experience “culture floating free from time” . I wonder whether the modernist architecture of Hermitage Court is another example of a “lost future” that I feel a nostalgia for.
From Falcon Way we look at the Merchant Seaman’s Orphan Asylum on Hermon Hill built in 1861, then walk down Cranbourne Avenue to Elmcroft Avenue where we enter the Roding Valley Park. A comment on the YouTube video from Darren Clack mentions that this land occupies the old course of the Roding at some point in the past when the river took a more meandering route. We explore the wonderful parkland beside the North Circular Road and River Roding as far as Charlie Brown’s Roundabout and then turn up Chigwell Road to Hermon Hill. Our walk ends at Holy Trinity Church, South Woodford.
Filmed on 12th June 2020 during the Lockdown.