In 1971 A L Frost, Les to all who knew him, produced a small booklet called "Takeley, a short history of the village". Obviously in demand this was reprinted and updated by Les several times, the last being in 1983. Les sadly died in 1984 and the booklet went out of print until in 2000 Trevor Allen in his role as Parish Chairman, Village Historian and TLHS Chairman updated and reprinted it (now called "Takeley A History"). As part of the Millennium Celebrations a copy was made available for every child in the village. Les Frost's original words live on unaltered in the booklet but new sections detail changes that have taken place since 1983 and are supplemented with additional photographs both old and new.
This new edition of Takeley A History is published to mark the new century. It is dedicated to the memory of its original author, Mr A L Frost. Les, as he was called by all who had the privilege of knowing him, was Headmaster of Takeley School from 1932 to 1961, a member of the Parish Council for many years, committee member of the Silver Jubilee Hall and Village Recorder. He died in November 1984.
The most recent edition of Les Frost’s book was published in 1975. In this the author included new material up to 1974. Since that date, although the book has been reprinted (with a new preface in 1983, which gave the author the opportunity to add information), no change has been made to the text, although many more developments have occurred in the village.
In preparing this edition in the year 2000, it has been decided to reprint Mr Frost’s text as he published it in 1983. It can be seen as an historical document In its own right, as it caught the picture of the village before major change.
Mr Frost ended his book with the question: ‘What of the future?’ Some answers can now be given and this has been undertaken in a final section, which has been added to this edition. It describes the changes that have occurred in the past seventeen years and underlines the queries which lie over the future. Whilst new information has been uncovered about Takeley’s past, some of the history described in these pages has been lost. Change, positive and negative, has affected the school, local transport, and village organisations. Above all, the development of Stansted Airport, with its direct impact on some of the historical buildings described in the original text, is rewriting the history of Takeley.
Trevor J. Allen, Parish Chairman
Copies of "Takeley A History, New Edition 2000" are available at a price of £5 including p&p within the UK.