Tiptree - St Luke
St Luke's Church was built in 1855/6. It is a plain building in the early English decorated style, surmounted by a bell turret and spire. The walls are of red brick, with grey bricks in bands. Internally, the church is beautifully light and airey, and huge - it seats up to 500 people. At the time St Luke's was built, Tiptree was relatively undeveloped. There was no village as such, no medieval church, just marsh and forest. In 1841, John Mechi bought land and a farmhouse in the area, seeing its potential. He drained the soil, ensured development of the local road network and was instrumental in the creation of a Parish of Tiptree. In 1864 Arthur Wilkin inherited farmland in the area and began to cultivate fruit; the jam factory followed and the village of Tiptree started to grow. By 1900 around 1,000 people lived in the village, and by 2000 the population was nearer 11,000. It seems the building of this large and internally elegant church was prescient.