THE GUNPOWDER PLOT
A quick guide
The Essex connections
The plot was an assassination attempt against King James I by a group of English Catholics led by Robert Catesby with a plan to blow up the House of Lords during the State Opening of Parliament on 5th November 1605.
The plotters allegedly hatched their plan in Barking, just north of the present A13 at Eastbury Manor House.
However the plot was discovered and a search was made of the basement of the House of Lords.
36 barrels of gun powder were discovered; enough to destroy the House completely, killing all those within.
Hiding in the basement, desperately looking to make his escape, was one Guy (Guido) Fawkes who was immediately arrested. The plotting in Barking remains to be proved but what is certain is that all the plotters were all rounded up and either killed during arrest or hung, drawn and quartered after trial and conviction.
But there is more!
The well-known rhyme associated with November 5th,
is credited with being inspired by Lancelot Andrewes (born 1555) in Allhallows , Barking.
Lancelot Andrewes moved to Raweth in Essex where he lived at a 13th century moated farmhouse called Chichester Manor House which today is the Chichester Hotel.
Later he was appointed Dean of Westminster and then served at the coronation of James I before becoming Bishop of Chichester and later Ely and then Winchester. In 1604 King James I authorized the First Westminster Company, under the directorship of Lancelot Andrewes, to begin a new translation of the Bible into English. The King James’ Bible quickly became, and remains the standard for English speaking Protestants and has had a profound influence on English literature.
On the anniversary of the foiling of the ‘Gunpowder Plot’
Andrewes was asked to prepare a sermon celebrating the King’s, and Parliament’s delivery. The sermon now known as The Gunpowder Plot Sermon became an annual event. In it Andrewes called for a lasting celebration of the King’s deliverance. The sermon was the inspiration for, and foundation of, the celebrations of Guy Fawkes Day on November 5th which have continued to this day.
St Nicholas Rawreth
More detail on the Essex Gunpowder plot connections can be found in:-
London’s Metropolitan Essex available from bookshops or online.
BBC1’s new three part serial GUNPOWDER (with Kit Harington of Game of Thrones fame) begins Saturday October 21st and concludes Saturday 4th November.
Barking was in the county of Essex until 1965.
See our video short REMEMBER
Full screen and audio recommended