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Epping is a small market town and civil parish in the Epping Forest district of the County of Essex, Englandmarker. It is located north-east of Loughtonmarker, south of Harlowmarker and north-west of Brentwoodmarker.

The town retains a rural appearance being surrounded by Epping Forestmarker and working farmland, and has many very old buildings, many of which are Grade I and II listed buildings. The town also retains its weekly market which is held every Monday and dates back to 1253. In 2001 the parish had a population of 11,047 although this has increased marginally since then.

Epping has been twinned with the German town of Eppingenmarker in north-west Baden-Württembergmarker since 1981. Although the once-famous Epping Butter, which was highly sought after in the 18th and 19th centuries, is no longer made, the equally well-known Epping sausages are still manufactured by Church's Butchers who have been trading on the same site since 1888.


"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 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. Up to 25 stagecoaches and mailcoaches a day passed through the town from Londonmarker en route to Norwichmarker Cambridgemarker and Bury St. Edmundsmarker. By the end of the 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 London 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.


Epping, as it stands today, has grown as a favoured town of residence for those who work in London. Particularly sought after is the hamlet of Coopersale St where house prices have bucked the national trend and held their values. 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 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 East of England Plan has led to the current situation, were Epping is experiencing the biggest threat to-date to its rural status, with a number of sites (the largest being St. Margaret’s Hospital) being proposed for redevelopment into 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, 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.

Further to the threat that new housing developments bring to the town, a new threat has arisen recently. Local government plans have been announced to locate a large number of gypsy camp sites in and around Epping.


Epping is part of the Epping Forestmarker parliamentary constituency, represented by Conservative Shadow Minister for Justice Eleanor Laing. From 1924 to 1945, the old Essex Epping division (which included Woodfordmarker, Chingfordmarker, Harlowmarker and Loughtonmarker as well as Epping) was represented by Winston Churchill. It now sits in the Epping and Theydon Bois division of Essex County Council. The town is divided into two district council wards. Epping Hemnall encompasses most of the town south-east of Epping High Street (B1393) including Ivy Chimneys, Fiddlers Hamlet and Coopersale. The rest of Epping lies in Epping Lindsey and Thornwood ward, as does Thornwood in the adjacent parish of North Weald Bassettmarker. Both wards elect three councillors each.

As well as the County and District Councils, Epping has a Town council consisting of 12 councillors, six each elected from Epping Hemnall and Epping Lindsey wards, one of which is elected Mayor of Epping and acts as Chairman of Council, as well as a civic and ceremonial head of the local community. The current Mayor of Epping, Councillor Ben Murphy, is thought to be the youngest Mayor-elect in the UK at just 24 years old .

Epping Forest District Council’s headquarters are located in Epping High Street.


Epping lies north-east of the centre of Londonmarker towards the northern end of Epping Forestmarker on a ridge of land between the River Rodingmarker and River Lea valleys. Epping is north of the small village of Theydon Boismarker.

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 small 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 Abbeymarker, Loughtonmarker A121) of the M25 motorwaymarker and south-west of junction 7 (Harlowmarker) of the M11 motorway.


Bus route 541 at Epping Tube Station
Epping is served by a number of bus routes, serving many surrounding towns and villages including Harlowmarker, Thornwood Common, Abridgemarker, Waltham Abbeymarker, and Brentwoodmarker. The number 620 bus, operated by First Group, travels daily from Epping to the Anglo European Schoolmarker, Ingatestonemarker.

Epping is served by London Transport rail services, and is the eastern terminus of the Central Line of the London Underground. The Central Line now terminates at Eppingmarker. However prior to 1994, it used to serve stations at North Wealdmarker, Blake Hallmarker and Ongarmarker where services terminated. The station has a car park with 508 spaces and is the second largest car park on the London Underground network, a toilet, a ticket machine, a pay phone as well as seats for sitting outside of the station.

Main Line train services are available from a number of neighbouring towns, with the closest stations to Epping being Roydonmarker, Harlowmarker and Chingfordmarker, these are served by the West Anglia Main Line and are operated by National Express East Anglia. However there is no direct public transport to Roydon and Chingford stations from Epping, making Harlow station the most accessible.


Route Number Route Operator
7/7A/7B Ivy Chimneys Spotted Dog / Epping Stationmarker to Chelmsford Bus Stationmarker via Ongar Regal Busways
19 Epping Stationmarker to Harlow Bus Stationmarker via Potter Streetmarker SM Coaches
55 Ongar Two Brewers to Epping Stationmarker / Harlow Bus Stationmarker TWH Bus & Coach
213 Epping St Margarets Hospital to Waltham Crossmarker via Upshiremarker Regal Busways

Toot Hillmarker / Coopersale to Harlow Bus Stationmarker via Epping Green Regal Busways

Arriva Shires & Essex
Harlow Bus Stationmarker to Ongar Two Brewersmarker / Brentwood Warley Old Fordmarker via North Wealdmarker, Ongar Arriva Shires & Essex
541 Loughton Stationmarker to Epping Hospital (Daily) / Harlow Bus Stationmarker (Evenings and Sundays only) via Abridgemarker Arriva Shires & Essex
575 Epping High Street to Lakeside Shopping Centremarker via Debdenmarker and Romfordmarker Blue Triangle
H1 Loughton Stationmarker to Harlow Bus Stationmarker via North Wealdmarker (Withdrawn from 18/11/09) Imperial Buses
X55 Loughton Stationmarker / Debden Broadwaymarker to Harlow Bus Stationmarker via Epping TWH Bus & Coach

Also see List of bus routes in Essex


Service Route
Central Line Epping to West Ruislipmarker via Central London
Central Line Epping to Ealing Broadwaymarker via Central London


Notable residents


  • Epping may be known to certain generations of people in some parts of Germany for being the home of Peter, David, Betty and Helga, featured in some textbooks used to teach English to German children.

  • Epping's famous weekly market changed form being held every Monday to every Friday from 1575 up until just after the First World War, at which point it returned back to being held on Monday.

  • Epping is the starting point for the Essex Way, which is a long distance path between Epping and Harwichmarker.

  • Epping is known to be home to a large concentration of Greater Crested Newts, which are a protected species.

  • Epping is home to the annual 'Epping Family Fun Run', which is held to raise money for the Rhys Daniels Trust charity.

Twin town

Location grid


  2. Epping Town Guide
  10. Epping station to be refurbished and improved | Transport for London
  11. Rod Stewart: A Man of Wealth and Taste : Rolling Stone
  12. Teddy's house egged by vandals after Danielle reunion | Mail Online
  13. bradley walsh | Sunday Herald, The | Find Articles at
  14. You've got m@il: Nick Berry Answers your e-mails - Daily Mirror - HighBeam Research
  15. Dennis Rofe - Southampton FC -
  16. David Gahan - AOL Music
  17. Sleaze Roxx: David Byron
  18. Camden New Journal - Books: Griff Rhys Jones - Semi Detached: Pulling Up Roots in Surburbia
  21. Julian Mitchell
  22. Local Authors
  29. Epping - Economic history and local government | British History Online
  30. BBC - Essex - Places - Where the town gives way to ancient wood

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