Friday Hill

Friday Hill, Waltham Forest

A historic manor house – and a housing estate built by the London County Council north of Chingford Hatch

Friday Hill House - PeterChingfordHistory99

This was pre­vi­ous­ly Jack­att Hill and its present name prob­a­bly derives from John Fri­day, who was liv­ing here in 1467, or from his suc­ces­sor Thomas Fri­day, who remained in the local­i­ty until 1483.

In 1608 City mer­chant Thomas Booth­by acquired the manor of Ching­ford Comtis, also known as Ching­ford Earls, and built a manor house here. The hill was at that time said to be inhab­it­ed by snakes and toads that spat fire – a sto­ry that was prob­a­bly put about to keep intrud­ers away from the grounds of the house.

Anoth­er tall tale of Fri­day Hill pro­pos­es that Charles II knight­ed a loin of beef here, thus beget­ting the ‘sir­loin’. How­ev­er, not only is this an alto­geth­er apoc­ryphal anec­dote but no one (until very recent­ly) ever claimed that the investi­ture took place here – mere­ly that the house once pos­sessed the oak table upon which the leg­endary loin had been served.

The manor house (shown in the image below) was pulled down in 1838 and replaced by the present Fri­day Hill House (shown above), which was designed in Tudor style by Lewis Vul­liamy for the Rev­erend Robert Booth­by Heath­cote.

Hidden London: Friday Hill manor house

Some of the orig­i­nal pan­elling, fire­places and oth­er fea­tures were reused in the new house, and sur­vive today. Booth­by Heath­cote also com­mis­sioned Vul­liamy to build the new parish church of St Peter and St Paul at Ching­ford Green in 1844.

The grounds of Fri­day Hill House remained the last unde­vel­oped tranche of Ching­ford until the death of Louisa Heath­cote in 1940 at the age of 86. After the Sec­ond World War the Lon­don Coun­ty Coun­cil acquired the prop­er­ty and laid out a pleas­ant estate, with the house becom­ing a com­mu­ni­ty cen­tre. Waltham For­est coun­cil now con­sid­ers the prop­er­ty to be sur­plus to its needs and has been try­ing to sell it.

Pimp Hall Park, to the north-west, has nurs­eries and a 17th-cen­tu­ry tim­ber-framed dove­cote.

Made up of former members of Blazin’ Squad, the boy band Friday Hill took its name from this place on its formation in 2005.

Postal district: E4
Website: Friday Hill Tenant Management Organisation
Further reading: Arthur Lansdell Martin, Chingford and the Boothbys of Friday Hill, Chingford Antiquarian and Historical Society, 1964
* The picture of Friday Hill House at the top of this page is adapted from an original photograph by ‘PeterChingfordHistory99’ at Wikimedia Commons, made available under the Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal Public Domain Dedication. Any subsequent reuse is freely permitted under the terms of that dedication. The house’s location is marked by a pin on the map above.