Rainham Hall was built in 1729 for Captain John Harle and is adjacent to the Church of St Helen and St Giles in Havering. Next to the Hall are the stables and Lodge. Captain John Harle (1688-1742) was a Master Mariner, ship owner, and who traded in building materials, coal, and foodstuffs around the UK and as far as the Baltic Sea and the Mediterranean. He invested in Rainham by dredging the River Ingrebourne so that ships could access Rainham from the River Thames and his ships docked at Rainham Wharf (now gone) close to his home.
The herbaceous borders were beautiful in early June – Ferdinand Picard? Rosa Mundi?, clematis, rosa gallica, and sisyrinchium all looked wonderful in the sunshine outside the house.
An orchard and vegetable garden and the terraces and lawned area are all developments in recent years to reclaim the site for community use, enjoyment, and learning. The vegetable growing area looked small but the orchard is clearly productive.
The woodland area is pretty and in early June it was filled with geraniums.
The terraced plantings just below the stable block were in full bloom!
The Church of St Helen and St Giles dates from 1170 and was founded by Richard de Lucy, the son-in-law of Henry II of England. The dedication is unusual – St Helen was the mother of Constantine the Great, and St Giles was a Greek saint. The church sits in a peaceful site next to Rainham Hall, but sadly it has been closed on both occasions I have visited.