Our 3rd annual well Dressing started on Wednesday 3rd August and culminated in a procession of the completed Dressing along the High Road to the village green on Saturday 6th August for a short service of thanksgiving for our village, followed by a Barbecue in the grounds of our lovely old church.
It was hugely successful with even more villagers getting involved this year so we are delighted with the support that we have and it certainly looks as though it is set to be an annual event.
Brief history of the village water supplies
Up until 1871 villagers had to haul up their water in buckets from 80 feet (24 metres) deep wells and lug it home.
An 1863 map shows a well close to the road near the Dog and Partridge pub. Another well appears to be marked in the grounds of the old Rectory.
In 1860 it was realised that the excessive water which accumulated and held up work in the Grays chalk quarries could be pumped out and put to good use and in 1861 the South Essex Waterworks was born. Mr. Wingfield Baker (the Lord of the Manor) paid for Stifford to be connected to the main supply in 1871.
Stifford pumping station was constructed in 1926-7 and after a £2.5 million modernisation in 2007 now supplies the village with water, a truly local resource.