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Hadleigh is a town in southeast Essex, Englandmarker, on the A13 between Benfleet and Leigh-on-Seamarker with a population of about 18,300.

Although a historic settlement with its castlemarker, it has become intertwined with Benfleet to the West and Leigh-on-Seamarker to the East. This has led to the Hadleigh in Suffolkmarker becoming more well known.

Hadleigh is probably best known for its castle, and the country park that surrounds it. The castle has been a romantic ruin for a few hundred years, but parts of two towers are still standing. John Constable painted Hadleigh Castlemarker in 1829, and the painting now resides at the Yale Center for British Artmarker. Set at the top of a hill overlooking the Thames Estuarymarker, it is possible to see as far as the Canary Wharfmarker development to the west. Another building of note is St. James the Less Church. Like the castle, this is a Norman building, but the church is still in use today. It remains picturesque despite the fact that it effectively stands in the central reservation of the A13 road.

It was announced in August 2008 that Hadleigh Farmmarker (including the area around the castle) would host the London 2012 Olympic mountain biking events.

Salvation Army Farm Colony

The colony was established in Hadleigh in 1891 by General Booth. He believed every human being should have food and shelter and published a plan to rescue the destitute from the squalor of London. His vision was that the poor would be given board and lodgings in a City Colony in exchange for a day’s work. They could then move to a Farm Colony where they would be trained to work the land and run their own smallholdings. Then finally they could progress to Overseas Colonies, running smallholdings abroad.

The trial City Colony was set up in Whitechapelmarker in 1889 and two years later Booth put down a deposit on land in Hadleigh for his Farm Colony. Starting with of land, later expanding to , the farm was home to 200 colonists by the end of its first year.Existing farm buildings were renovated and new dormitories, a bathhouse, laundry, reading room, hospital and religious meeting house were built. As well as farming and market gardening, colonists were taught brickmaking, pottery and construction skills.Today the colony operates an employment training centre for people who have special training needs, and accepts referrals from Social Services and the Employment Service. The aim is to create a realistic working environment, with the intention of helping clients gain the skills necessary for work elsewhere. Employment at the training centre – reminiscent of the colony’s origins - includes horticulture, carpentry, catering, office skills and estate management.


Since the Local Government Act 1972, Hadleigh, along with Canvey Islandmarker, South Benfleetmarker, and Thundersleymarker has formed the parliamentary constituency and local government district and borough of Castle Point. As of 2008, the Member of Parliament representing Castle Point is the Independent politician Bob Spink.

Hadleigh elects 1 seat to Essex County Council. As of 2009, the seat is held by Jillian Reeves of the Conservative Party. Within Castle Point Borough Council, Hadleigh is represented by six councillors elected from the two wards of St James and Victoria.


Image:Hadleigh Castle panorama.jpg|Hadleigh castleImage:Img_1062_3_4_jpg_h680.jpg|Hadleigh Castle as seen across the Hadleigh Landscape.Image:StJamesTheLess_Hadleigh.JPG|Church of St James the Less, Hadleigh, Essex


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