Join a haunting journey along the River Stour in Essex and find out about a wicked ‘witch’ murderer, and extraordinary holiday home and a port town’s vital connection to modern democracy. This episode’s adventure follows Greater Anglia’s Mayflower Line.
Local guide Bob takes us for a walk around a village with a distinctive scent! From under Mistley’s malt towers we hear how a village and a grand country house grew up together here. We take a walk past the former home of Matthew Hopkins, the Witch Finder General who had around 100 women put to death in his moneymaking crusade through East Anglia.
The wildlife along the Stour is breathtaking and as we continue our journey we discover more birdwatching hotspots in Wrabness, not to mention a remarkable Grayson Perry-designed house in the landscape. Award-winning station Adopter Julia tells the story behind it and shares the story of the beautiful community garden she manages here.
We conclude our journey in Harwich, famed for its shipbuilding. Local David is a mine of information on the area and he’s our guide through the narrow streets and wide history of this wonderful town. Find out where sea buoys are repaired, encounter one of the country’s oldest cinemas and get a taste of the many volunteer-run museums in town. For those of you wondering how to pronounce “Stour”, we have the definitive answer too!
Lives on the Lines is created on behalf of the Community Rail Partnerships with Greater Anglia.
Presented and produced by Katharine Kerr for Fresh Air Production.
You can explore the Mayflower Line and find out more about the Essex and South Suffolk Community Rail partnership at https://www.esscrp.org.uk
And explore travel with Greater Anglia at https://www.greateranglia.co.uk
The Harwich Society https://www.harwich-society.co.uk
Grayson Perry’s ‘A House for Essex’
Manningtree Museum and Local History Group