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Epping, Essex facts for kids

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UK Epping highstreet.jpg
High Street, and church of St John the Baptist
Epping is located in Essex
Area 7.73 km2 (2.98 sq mi)
Population 11,047 (civil parish, 2001)
11,461 (civil parish 2011)
• Density 1,429/km2 (3,700/sq mi)
OS grid reference TL455025
• London 17 mi (27 km) SW
Civil parish
  • Epping
Shire county
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town EPPING
Postcode district CM16
Dialling code 01992
Police Essex
Fire Essex
Ambulance East of England
EU Parliament East of England
UK Parliament
  • Epping Forest
List of places
51°42′01″N 0°06′31″E / 51.7004°N 0.1087°E / 51.7004; 0.1087

Epping is a market town and civil parish in the Epping Forest district of the County of Essex, England. The town is 17 miles (30 km) northeast from the centre of London, is surrounded by the northern end of Epping Forest, and on a ridge of land between the River Roding and River Lea valleys.

Epping is the terminus for London Underground's Central line. The town has a number of historic Grade I and II and Grade III listed buildings. The weekly market, which dates to 1253, is held each Monday. In 2001 the parish had a population of 11,047 which increased to 11,461 at the 2011 Census.

Epping became twinned with the German town of Eppingen in north-west Baden-Württemberg in 1981.


"Epinga", a small community of a few scattered farms and a chapel on the edge of the forest, is mentioned in the Domesday Book of 1086. However, the settlement referred to is known today as Epping Upland. It is not known for certain when the present-day Epping was first settled. By the mid-12th century a settlement known as Epping Heath (later named Epping Street), had developed south of Epping Upland as a result of vigorous clearing of the forest for cultivation. In 1253 King Henry III conveyed the right to hold a weekly market in Epping Street which helped to establish the town as a centre of trade and has continued to the present day (the sale of cattle in the High Street continued until 1961).

The linear village of Epping Heath developed slowly into a small main-road town and by the early 19th century considerable development had taken place along what is now High Street and Hemnall Street. (Hemnall Street was until 1894 in the parish of Theydon Garnon, as was the railway station) Up to 25 stagecoaches and mailcoaches a day passed through the town from London en route to Norwich, Cambridge and Bury St. Edmunds. In the early 19th century, 26 coaching inns lined the High Street. A couple survive today as public houses, e.g. The George and Dragon and The Black Lion. The advent of the railways put an end to this traffic and the town declined, but it revived after the extension of a branch line from Loughton in 1865 and the coming of the motor car.

A number of listed buildings, most dating from the 18th century, line both sides of the High Street although many were substantially altered internally during the 19th century. Some of the oldest buildings in the town can be found at each end of the Conservation Area, e.g. Beulah Lodge in Lindsey Street (17th century), and the attractive group of 17th and early 18th century cottages numbered 98–110 (even) High Street.

The original parish church, first mentioned in 1177, was All Saints' in Epping Upland, the nave and chancel of which dates from the 13th Century. In 1833, the 14th-century chapel of St John the Baptist in the High Road was rebuilt in the Gothic Revival style. It became the parish church of Epping in 1888 and was again rebuilt. A large tower was added in 1909.


Epping, as it stands today, has grown as a favoured town of residence for those who work in London. Its market still brings shoppers in from surrounding villages and towns every Monday. Perhaps the most prominent building in Epping these days is the District Council's office with its clock tower, designed to bring balance to the High Street with the old Gothic Revival water tower at the southern end, built in 1872, and St John's Church tower in the centre. The centre of Epping on and around the High Street is a designated conservation area.

Epping's increasing popularity with young professionals and families, along with the Government's planning policies (as applied by the District Council) has led to the current situation: Epping is experiencing the biggest threat to its rural status yet and a number of sites (the largest being St. Margaret’s Hospital) are being proposed for redevelopment as new housing estates.

The various developments would see Epping’s housing stock rise by around 20% and has caused strong opposition from residents who wish to retain Epping’s rural ‘charm’, they state the town does not have the infrastructure to cope with a large influx of new residents and vehicles. Residents point to the regular traffic congestion, lack of parking spaces (and those taken up by commuters from all over who use the railhead), low water pressure and total lack of an NHS dentist as examples. This opinion has been echoed by Epping Town Council, who have stated that Epping will not be able to cope with any new housing estates for at least 10 years.

There has been a new raft of eateries entering the town in recent months and the quality of those places has, and will continue to bring visitors to the town.


Epping lies 19 miles (30.6 km) northeast of the centre of London towards the northern end of Epping Forest on a ridge of land between the River Roding and River Lea valleys. Epping is north of the small village of Theydon Bois.

Most of the population live in the built up area centred on and around the High Street (B1393) and Station Road. About a thousand people live in the village of Coopersale which, while physically separated from Epping by forest land, is still part of the civil parish. A few dozen households make up the hamlets of Coopersale Street and Fiddlers Hamlet. Much of the eastern part of the present parish was until 1895 in the parish of Theydon Garnon.

The Town lies north-east of junction 26 (Waltham Abbey, Loughton A121) of the M25 motorway and south-west of junction 7 (Harlow) of the M11 motorway.


Epping tube 01
A route 541 bus at Epping Tube Station
Boundary (104857493)
Railway track of the Epping Ongar Railway close to Epping tube station (Epping Forest Halt). Passengers cannot alight here due to the absence of a platform.

Epping is served by several rail, bus and road routes, as well as walking trails.

Rail and Tube

Epping tube station is a London Underground terminus, on the Central line.

The station is in London fare zone 6, and accepts Oyster and contactless payment methods. There is a car park at the station. There is no Night Tube, as Central line services overnight on Fridays and Saturdays terminate at Loughton.

The Central line links Epping directly with East London, Stratford, The City, Oxford Street, and destinations in West London.

Until 1994, the Central line extended north from Epping to North Weald, Blake Hall (until 1981), and Ongar. Much of the line is now served by a heritage railway - the Epping Ongar Railway. The heritage railway does not serve Epping tube station, but the museum runs a heritage London Bus to the Central line station on some open days.

The nearest mainline stations to Epping are at Roydon, Harlow and Waltham Cross. Services from these stations are operated by Greater Anglia and link the area directly with London Liverpool Street, Stratford, Hertford, Cambridge and Stansted Airport.


Epping is served by several bus routes.

Central Connect operates the high-frequency 420 bus route between Harlow Bus Station and Ongar, via Epping tube station.

Other less frequent services include the 13A Waltham Cross to Epping St Margaret's Hospital, and the 418 Loughton to Epping service.


Epping High Street is numbered the B1393. The route runs north-south through the town.

To the north, the B1393 carries traffic to the Hastingwood Interchange, where it meets the M11 motorway for Cambridge, Stansted Airport and London (Junction 7), as well as the A414 for Harlow and Chelmsford. Southbound traffic meets the Wake Arms roundabout for the A104 to Woodford and the North Circular Road, and the A121 for Loughton, Waltham Abbey and the M25 London Orbital.

The B181 runs east-west through Epping, between Roydon and North Weald.

The B182 runs along the south-western perimeter of the town, between Epping's Bell Common and Epping Upland.

These roads are maintained by Essex Highways.

The M11 bypasses the town to the east, and the M25 bypasses Epping to the south. M25 traffic passes underneath Bell Common through a tunnel.

Walking and Cycling

Much of Epping Forest has unlimited walking access. The City of London Corporation, which looks after Epping Forest, has produced several waymarked walking routes for leisure.

There are waymarked footpaths between the town and surrounding villages, such as Coopersale and Theydon Bois.

Epping and the surrounding forest is popular with cyclists. There are no cycle lanes on the B1393, but road space is given to cyclists on the A104 between Walthamstow in London and the Wake Arms roundabout.


  • Epping's famous weekly market changed from being held every Monday to every Friday from 1575 up until just after the First World War, at which point it returned to being held on Monday.
  • Epping is the starting point for the Essex Way, which is a long distance path between Epping and Harwich.
  • Epping is home to the first ever Clinton Cards shop which was opened in 1968.
  • Epping is home to Hallows End Haunt. An annual Halloween Home Haunt set up by a local family to give members of the community a safe place to trick or treat. For more information Hallows End Haunt, Epping, Essex can be found on Facebook.


Epping Town played in the Isthmian League until folding during the 1984–85 season. Epping FC currently play in the Essex Olympian Football League. Both have played at Stonards Hill. There are two cricket clubs at the south of the town: Epping Cricket Club at Lower Bury Lane, and Epping Foresters Cricket Club at Bell Common which is partly in the neighbouring parish of Epping Upland. Epping Foresters ground is on top of the M25 motorway (Bell Common Tunnel).


  • Epping St John's School, the only secondary school in Epping, is a Catholic school. The school has an active charity fundraising group led by a Student Executive team. In 2020 two hundred students were awarded the Rotary Prize for 'Service to Schools was in Essex' by the local Epping Rotary Club.
  • Coopersale Hall School, a prep school at the end of Centre Drive Lane, Epping.
  • Ivy Chimneys Primary School, a primary school located in Ivy Chimneys, Epping.
  • Epping Primary School
  • Coopersale and Theydon Garnon C.E. (Vol.Cont.) Primary School. A primary school located in Coopersale village.

Notable people

  • Jill Barklem, writer and illustrator
  • Nick Berry, actor
  • James Buckley, actor
  • David Byron, former lead singer of rock band Uriah Heep
  • Winston Churchill, Member of Parliament for the town and the larger constituency named after it from 1924 to 1945, including his tenure as Prime Minister during World War II
  • Dodie Clark, singer and youtuber
  • Crass, band
  • Sidney Godley, first private soldier awarded the Victoria Cross during the Great War
  • Dave Gahan, singer, Depeche Mode frontman
  • Philip Hammond, Former Chancellor of the Exchequer
  • Glenn Hoddle, former professional football player and manager
  • Griff Rhys Jones, TV presenter and comedian
  • Jason Merrells, actor
  • Julian Mitchell, screenwriter and novelist
  • Dennis Rofe, former professional footballer
  • Ben Shephard, television presenter
  • Sheridan Smith, actress
  • Lisa Snowdon, model
  • Rod Stewart, singer
  • Jessie Wallace, actress
  • Bradley Walsh, actor and television presenter
  • Adrian Whitbread, football coach
  • Gary Wraight, footballer

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Epping (Essex) para niños

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