St Mary the Virgin stands between the High
Road and Brook Road, on the eastern side of the former. This was
Loughton's third parish church, after those of St Nicholas and St
John the Baptist. The population of the village of Loughton continued
to expand especially around the High Road and the railway station so
in 1872 the church of St Mary was built on the site of what until 1865
had partly been railway sidings, and was consecrated as a daughter
church of St John's.
The land for the church was given by the lord of
the manor, in this case the rector of St John's. The north aisle was
added in 1883. In 1887 the church gained its own parish covering the
High Road from the cricket ground southwards to the edge of Buckhurst
Hill, and between Epping Forest and the railway, plus a large area of
what were then open fields from the railway to the River Roding. Today
a small park and some well-grown trees shield the church from the busy
St Edmund of Canterbury Catholic Church
stands well back from the road on the southern side of Traps
Hill, a few metres east of the junction with the High Road. The
first Catholic church for Loughton was built in 1926-1927, and
dedicated to Edmund of Abingdon, or Canterbury, archbishop of
Canterbury (1234-1245). That building was virtually destroyed by a
disastrous fire, and the present building was constructed in 1958 in
the style of modern church architecture of that decade.
Loughton Methodist Church is on the western side of
the High Road, opposite Trap's Hill. Methodism here began with the
1873 hire of the small 1860s England's Lane Chapel, Debden
Green, formerly a Congregationalist chapel. In 1890 the small wooden
Loughton Chapel was built, and later rebuilt in brick. An
iron chapel replaced that, on Forest Road in 1881. This was moved to
the present site in 1885. A brick chapel was built in 1903, and
replaced in 1986.
Forest Hall Evangelical Church is at 2 High
Beach Road, a small red brick building facing south-east over the
High Road from the south-western side of the road. The church was
founded by the Plymouth Brethren, a conservative evangelical
movement whose history began in Ireland in the 1820s. The building
was probably erected in the 1930s, although the roof appears to be a
later addition. It is sometimes referred to in literature as the
Brethren Meeting Place.
Loughton Baptist Church lies well back on
the western side of the High Road, at its southern end opposite Meadow
Road. On 3 October 1813 a small nonconformist chapel was opened here.
The church supported the Baptist Union, although it was not part of it.
A new church was built in 1860-1861, and Congregationalists shared the
chapel as Loughton Union Church for some time, although the 1861
building appears to have been replaced by about the 1980s.