The original church of St Mary the Virgin was situated on the road between Theydon Bois and Abridge and although no trace of the building is left there is a memorial inscribed with the names of some of the parishioners who were buried here. For a while it was served by travelling priests from St. Bartholomew the Great, Smithfield.
When Rev George Hambleton became incumbent in 1842 it was decided to build a new church in a more central position. Funds were raised, a site found and a new church was completed in 1844.
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