Loughton has a long history dating back to an Iron Age hill fort, Loughton Camp. The town also had an important role in the Tudor period when Loughton Hall was owned by Mary Tudor before she became Queen. The area was part of Epping Forest and was the site of a series of crimes associated with such a rural landscape. Being on the route of regular coaches from London to Cambridge, it was also an ideal place for highwaymen. The lure of easy money by robbery on the highway was too much of a temptation for a local butcher, Dick Turpin, who supposedly roasted a local widow over her own fire to find out where she had hidden her money.
The area expanded in the nineteenth century with the coming of the railway. However the refusal of the company to offer cheap workingman's tickets led to the area remaining very middle class. During the Victorian period Loughton became popular with those of artistic and scientific interests, and some political reformers.
Join author Michael Foley as he delves beneath the surface to reveal the real Secret Loughton.
Michael Foley is a local author who has had a number of articles published in magazines such as Best of British, This England and The Great War. He has been writing for some time and has had many books published, mainly about the area where he lives and Essex and Military History. He lives in Romford.