35 Holywell Street

Grade II* Listed Building: List Entry Number 1047234. Dated 1626. Owned by Wadham College.

Nos. 35, 36, 37, and 38 Holywell Street now comprise Staircases XIII and XIV of Wadham College to the north.

35 Holywell Street


Left: 35 Holywell Street in the early 1830s, drawn by W. A. Delamotte and engraved by Orlando Jewitt


Photograph of 35 Holywell Street by Henry Taunt


Part of this house appears in a painting of the Music Room by J. A. Shuffrey in c.1907 (pictured on p. 41 of Lauren Gilmour and Margaret Shuffrey, J. A. Shuffrey 1859–1939: An Oxford Artist’s Life Remembered).

This house with 36 next door was offered for sale in Jackson’s Oxford Journal of 8 November 1845:

TO BE SOLD BY AUCTION, By W. FISHER, At the King’s Arms Inn, Holywell, on Friday the 14th day of November, 1845, at Six o’clock.

Lot 1.— The DWELLING HOUSE, No. 35, Holywell-street, occupied by Mr. Harper, wine merchant, and Mr. Hope, builder; it contains two sitting rooms, office, and kitchen, on the ground floor, with six bed rooms above; also part of the large yard behind, with Warehouse and two-stalled Stable, and Three Cottages, occupied by — Jones, — Hedges, and — Jackson; and the use of the gateway in common with the occupier of Lot 2.

Lot 2. — The DWELLING HOUSE, No. 36, Holywell-street, occupied by Mrs. Sarah Knibbs; it contains three sitting rooms, six bed rooms and cellar, with large yard and garden, and the use of the gateway in common with the occupier of Lot 1 (the whole yard being at present occupied by Mr. Hope, builder.)

The two lots are held upon renewable leases under Wadham College, for terms of 20 years, from Lady day 1838.

The premises may be viewed on application to the tenants; and further particulars obtained of the auctioneer, or of Mr. John M. Davenport, Solicitor, Oxford.

35 Holywell Street in the censuses


John Harper (65), a wine merchant, lived here with Susan Harper (20); Henry Harper (20), who was an assistant librarian; and Frances Harper (15), who was an apprentice. They had one male servant.


John Harper (77), now a widower but still described as a wine merchant, lived here with one female servant.


William R. Bowden (43), a Plymouth-born printer and publisher employing three men, lived here with his wife Isabella (43), his son James (14), and an apprentice of 16.


Charles Collcutt (51), a college bedmaker, lived here with his wife Ann and his daughters Annie (21) and Clara (19) who were dressmakers, his son Charles (17) who was a tailor, and his younger children Henry (13), James (12), Frederick (11), and Agnes (8). They had one servant girl aged 16.


William Wilsdon (40), a gardener, lived here with his wife Mary (38) and his children Olive (9), Kathleen (6), and William (4).

Occupants of 35 Holywell Street listed in directories etc.

Survey of Oxford

Frontage: 12 yds 1 ft 6 in
Mr Hawting


John Harper
Wine merchant (& Accountant from 1842)

Joseph Hope, builder, also listed here in 1842 directory


William R. Bowden
Printer, bookseller, & stationer etc.


Swadling & Ovenell, bookbinders


Charles Collcutt (51)
College bedmaker

Mrs C. Collcutt
Fancy dealer( by 1884)


Henry Devenish Leigh, pro-proctor
with Henry Ovenell, bookbinder at 35½


Revd Alexander James Carlyle
Chaplain & lecturer of University College and Vicar of the united parishes of All Saints & St Martin’s (Carfax); later Canon (18961905)
(with bookbinders at 35½: Swadling & Ovenell in 1899, and Edgar Ovenell in 1905)

Miss Carlyle by 1945

From 1899–1926 Miss Jane W. Kirkaldy, M.A., Tutor Somerville College, St Hugh’s College is listed in directories at No. 35, except for 1907 to 1910. In addition the National Union of Women’s Suffrage Societies is listed in 1899 and Society of Oxford Home Students from 1914 to 1926

From 1907 to 1910 Edgar Frederick Carritt, M.A., praelector & Junior Dean, University College is listed at No. 35


Frederick William Dampier Deakin, D.S.O., M.A.
Fellow of Wadham College


No listing

At 35 Holywell today

Part of Wadham College

Holywell home

© Stephanie Jenkins

Oxford History home