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I, Ana Clair, was born in Harlow. So, I was always connected to Essex. My family moved to California about eight years after my birth. But I’ve been back and forth to Essex almost seven times now.

The county always has an impact on me, from the accent to its foods to its castles. As we lived in the city most of the time, we visited places all over the county.

In the year 2017, I decided to tour all over England. It was mainly for my book. But eventually, I started with Essex. Both my grandparents lived here all their life. They saw the place changing and developing. They had too many stories to tell. And visiting every site here made me realize how alive and lovely those stories were.

I read about the Church of Mary Magdalene, and I visited it during my travels. The town of Basildon itself was a wonder. The Holy Trinity Church is an Anglican cathedral and was built in that way. Brentwood Cathedral and Chelmsford Cathedral both were made during the Anglican period.

There’s a lot more about Essex that I can’t even remember. And writing such a blog helps me to remember every detail. The details are pretty close to my upbringing and adulthood. They gave me experience as well as a perspective.

This blog was just the hint of what I experienced and knew about the county of Essex. It’s not just Essex; the whole of Great Britain is much more than our royal family and Westminster abbey. And I realized it a lot better while living abroad.