HOLYWELL, OXFORD

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30 Holywell Street


30 Holywell Street

Livery stables in 1876

 

Grade II Listed Building:
List Entry Number 1047229
A seventeenth-century house refashioned in the eighteenth century. Owned by Harris Manchester College.

The large gateway to the right of No. 30 led to livery stables, which can be seen stretching far to the north in the 1876 OS map (left).

James Woodforde of New College wrote in his diary on 25 January 1764, “I put up my Horse at Jacksons in Holliwell, who keeps a Livery stable”. The 1772 Survey of Oxford shows that Mr Jackson lived here at No. 30, and

Woodforde described his stabling arrangements more fully on 1 June 1774: “My Mare is to remain in Oxford, & is to be had to Jacksons Livery Stable to Morrow Morning in Holliwell. I agreed to give Jackson per Week — 3. feeds a day 8: 0.”

 

In the nineteenth century, the man who kept the stables usually lived at No. 30 to the front, although Charles Symonds must have done well, because in the 1850s he moved to a finer house in Holywell Street and put his foreman into this one. Symonds’ livery stables appear to have been the best in Oxford. In Cuthbert Bede’s The Adventures of Mr Verdant Green, Charles Larkyns says to Verdant, “We’ll go to Symonds’: I keep my hack there and you can depend upon having a good one.”

Symonds and his wife Emily had two children baptised at Holywell Church: Frederick Murray on 13 November 1842, and Georgina Blanche on 21 January 1844.

The stables survived until well into the twentieth century, when the area behind the house became the Layton Garages.

 

Henry Taunt photograph showing
30 Holywell Street in 1900

Bede describes Verdant Green’s visit to Charles Symonds’ stables thus:

So they made their way to Holywell Street, and turned under a gateway, and up a paved yard, to the stables. The upper part of the yard was littered down with straw, and covered in by a light, open roof; and in the stables there was accommodation for a hundred horses. At the back of the stables, and separated from the Wadham Gardens by a narrow lane, was a paddock; and here they found Mr. Fosbrooke, and one or two of his friends, inspecting the leaping abilities of a fine hunter, which one of the stable-boys was taking backwards and forwards over the hurdles and fences erected for that purpose.

Symonds' livery stables

The above picture of Charles Simmonds’ stables in c.1850 is taken from The Further Adventures of Mr Verdant Green, where Larkyns says, “Well come along, Verdant, we’ll go to Charley Symonds’ and get our hacks. You can meet us Harry, just over the Maudlin Bridge; and we’ll have a canter along the Henley road.”

Below: the same view in 2009:

Gateway of No. 30

30 Holywell Street in the censuses

1841

Charles Symonds (23), a stable keeper, lived here with Emily (15) and one female servant.

1851

Charles Symonds (36), a livery stable keeper, still lived here with his wife Emily (30) and two servants.

1861

Thomas Day (49), a Gloucestershire-born ostler, lived here with his wife Ann and children Thomas (17, clerk in a solicitor’s office), Henry (12), Mary Ann (7). They had one servant.

1881

William J. Wheeler (44), a horse dealer, lived here with his wife Harriett (32) and his children Alice (8), William (7), Edith (3), Gertrude (1), and Emily (5 months). They had one general servant and a nurse.

1901

The head of the household (Edgar Frederick Carritt) was away, but his brother-in-law, John Lyttleton Etty (25), who was a secondary schoolmaster, was at home with two servants (a housemaid and a cook).

1911

Naser Oder, a Turkish national born in Palestine an now Curate of Warkworth, Northants, lived here with his wife Mary (64) and his daughter Margaret (25). They had one servant.

 

Occupants of 30 Holywell Street listed in directories etc.

  No. 30

Yard behind No. 30
(sometimes numbered 29½)

1772
Survey of Oxford

Frontage: 10 yds 0 ft 9 in
Mr Jackson

1839–1871

Charles Symonds 1839–1851
(lived at No. 33 subsequently)

Thomas Day in 1861

Mrs Day in 1861 and 1871

Thomas Day
Foreman of the livery stables, in 1866

Charles Symonds,
Horse dealer & livery stables

1872–1889

William J. Wheeler

W. Wheeler
Livery stables

1894

Henry Harris

William Franklin
Livery stables

Robert Anstee (Vine Cottage)

1896–1898

William George Telling Bedford

1899

Mrs Franklin

Harold J. Fletcher
Livery stables (to 1901)

1902–1905

Edgar Frederick Carrett, M.A.

1907–1908

Harold Brewer Hartley
Fellow & Science tutor & lecturer in Physics, Balliol College

1909–1911

Rev. Naser Odeh

1914

George Walter Young, M.A.
Private tutor 1914–1921

Harold Spencer Young
and Miss Young by 1926

Miss Young by 1952

The University & County Posting Stables Ltd

1921–1926

The Layton Garages

1935–1962

No listing

1964–1966

Mrs P. E. Waller

1967–1976

Harold W. Spicer, M.A.

1991

Planning application 91/00694/L

At 30 Holywell today

Sports facility for Harris Manchester College

Holywell home

© Stephanie Jenkins

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