Much has been written about Colchester and its rich and varied heritage, but rather less attention has been given to the surrounding rural communities. Like their larger neighbour, they too have experienced much change in the form of modernisation and increasing motor traffic, but to a large extent many of the smaller towns and villages of north east Essex have managed to retain much of their distinctive rural charm. From the picturesque villages surrounding the town to the coastal regions of Brightlingsea and Mersea Island, this book explores the changing scenes of life in these rural communities. Changing street scenes, buildings, transport and fashions are all graphically recorded and serve to highlight the ever forward march of time. This compilation will serve as a nostalgic reminder to those who can remember life as it used to be in the rural communities.
Patrick Denney, a Colchester resident, is a well-known local author and one of the leading researchers of Colchester's history. He teaches local and family history classes throughout the region and is a Blue Badge Tourist Guide. He is also secretary of the Friends of Colchester Museums and a member of the Colchester Recalled Oral History Group.