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Prittlewell

Bowls Club

Founded 1928

Affiliated to Bowls England, ECBA, ECWBA and PPABC

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Priory Park

The Park Gates and Pump

Priory Park is located in Victoria Avenue, Southend and is set in 45 acres of parkland.

It was opened by the Duke of York, (later George VI) on 14th July 1920.

 

The park caters for a variety of leisure activities - football, cricket, bowling, tennis, basketball, fishing, childrens' playground, café, museums and gardens and ponds, some of which are included on this website.

 

Our first association with the park was in 1928 when the club was formed and it has been our home ever since.

The ornate gates to the Park commemorate the opening of Priory Park by HRH The Duke of York on 14 July 1920.

 

150 years before the Park and Victoria Avenue, a small bridge crossed Prittle Brook.  The road, then called North Street, was little more than a muddy country lane to Rochford. The remains of the village pump can be seen on the south side of the Brook.  

 

A weatherboarded cottage was on the north side, beyond which were the enclosed grounds of the Priory, at that time a private house.  A handful

of cottages were on the right hand side - some of which still remain.  On the other side of the lane was Earls Hall, a medieval manor house and farm.

 

To the south, the lane went up the hillside to the Parish church at the top.  Scattered buildings along the lower part of the lane, including the village school, became more densely packed as the lane reached the Church which, of course, was the heart of the village.

We are a mixed bowling club that uses the local council greens within Priory Park and shares our pavilion with two other ladies clubs.

 

We have the largest and probably the best bowling greens in the area, with a superb pavilion and facilities.  Club days are Monday and Thursday, but games are played every day.  Greens are always available and we can offer free coaching by any one of our six qualified coaches.

 

We invite membership applications from men and women, and new and experienced bowlers of all ages are very welcome.  Please go to the Membership Page.

The Bandstage The Ponds

The Bandstage

The Ponds

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Prittlewell Priory

Prittlewell Priory was founded by Robert FitzSuen in 1110 AD.

 

FitzSuen owned vast estates in south east Essex. His grandfather had been one of several French families given lands by Edward the Confessor.   However, FitzSuen seems to have given part of his estates in Prittlewell to the monks of St. Pancras, Lewes in Sussex for the foundation of a Priory of the order of Cluny.  St. Pancras was the ‘mother’ house of Cluny in England.  Cluny was in Burgundy in France, and had become a favoured monastic foundation because on its very strict regime.  There were three Cluniac houses in Essex, Prittlewell being by far the largest.  Other Cluniac Priories in south east England include Castle Acre and Bromholm, both in Norfolk.

 

The rest of the Prittlewell estates seem to have been retained by the family, and were inherited eventually by the Earls of Oxford (the de Veres).  This area then became known as Earls Hall.

 

The Priory was supported by the income from lands, property and churches in many of the surrounding parishes.  This included some properties in the town of Prittlewell itself, especially along the north side of East Street, together with properties stretching down to the shore of the Thames, adjacent to the manor of Southchurch.  In the 15th century this area was known as South End – the south end of the lands of the Priory.

 

Prittlewell Priory was largely self-sufficient.  The Priory comprised the conventional buildings for religious purposes (the church, the refectory, Priory storerooms or cellars and Prior’s chamber, and the Chapter House with dormitory above.   All of these were arranged around the Cloisters.

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