Paycocke’s House and Garden is a National Trust property located on the outskirts of Coggeshall, about ten miles west of Colchester and within easy reach of both the A12 and the A120. It was built around 1500 for the Paycocke family.
Thomas Paycocke had made a good living from the cloth trade which flourished across East Anglia at that time. Thomas lived there with his wife, and their initials feature in the wood carvings that can be found in the house. It’s likely that sheep were kept on the premises, their wool used to make the cloth whose sale kept the Paycockes in such luxury. The wagons would have passed through the oak gateway that can still be seen today.
In a town packed with historic buildings, Paycocke’s stands out. The ornate carvings that feature in the timber frame plus the patterns in the brickwork make this a very special building. Inside, the National Trust have done a commendable job in presenting rooms with historic furnishings since taking over the running of the house in 1924.
Visits can be made from spring to mid-autumn on selected days of the week and admission costs £5.50. For more information take a look online at http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/paycockes-house-and-garden. Parking by the roadside is very limited so many people choose to combine Paycocke’s with Grange Barn on the other side of Coggeshall, linked by a guided walk which can be downloaded and printed out before you set out: http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/article-1356405339369