Sacher Building, formerly 1517 Long Wall Street

Sacher Building, 15-17 Long Wall Street

Above: Sacher Building from the south; below, from the north

Sacher Building from north

Sacher Building entrance

In May 1961 New College was granted planning permission (61/10576/A_H) for a “new building for graduates and car storage” on the site of 15, 16, and 17 Long Wall Street. The Sacher Building, designed by David Roberts, was built in 1962/3 and opened by Harold Macmillan, Prime Minister and Chancellor of the University of Oxford, on 25 June 1963 (picture of plaque)


Right: Entrance to the Sacher Building inside New College, through the “long wall” that once marked the end of the gardens of the houses that stood here

Below: The “long wall” viewed from New College garden, with the tower of the Sacher Building (which appears on the left in the top photograph) rising above the wall on the right.

Sacher Building from rear

The detail below from the 1876 OS map shows the site of the Sacher Building (viewed from the west, with Longwall Street at the top). The site comprises No. 15 (the wide building attached to No. 14 to the south), then a gap to the north followed by Nos. 16 & 17, a small pair of semi-detached houses with a stylish shared back garden and an outhouse-type building attached on the north side.

Sacher Building site on 1876 OS map

The yard was in the occupation of John Hudson’s builder’s firm until 1864. The following advertisement appeared in Jackson’s Oxford Journal for 8 October 1864:

TO LET, with immediate possession,— The extensive BUILDING YARDS, with Masons’ and Carpenters’ Shops, Trade Erections, offices, and Foreman’s Cottage, situate in Long Wall-street, for many years in the occupation of Messrs. Hudson.

The yard was then occupied by the bookbinders Morley & Brewer (later Morley Brothers).

No. 15 was described in a city lease of 1812 as having been “lately erected”. This house belonged to the City until 1921, when it became the property of New College by an exchange. On 1 July 1812 the City granted a lease to the Headington carpenter William Jeffcoat of “seven messuages, lately erected”, being Nos. 9–15. In 1825 and 1839 he was granted further leases, and the occupant of No. 13 was on both occasions James Watts.

No. 16 was occupied by John Townsend in 1812 and by James Hudson in 1825.

Jackson’s Oxford Journal of 25 February 1893 reported that the “extensive leasehold premises in Long Wall-street, in the occupation of Messrs Morley and Son, was sold, after spirited bidding, at 2,700l”.

Occupants of 15–17 Long Wall Street listed in directories etc.


No. 15

Behind  No. 15/16

No. 16

No. 17


James Watts
Painter & glazier

John Hudson
Builder, brickmaker, stone & marble mason (1830)


Hudson & Matthew,
Builders (No 16) (1852)

John Hudson

James Gadd
College servant


No listing

No listing


Beesley and Carter
Painters & glaziers (1851/2)

John Beesley (1861)

Ann Wenn

Thomas Bacon (1851)

Helen Bacon, milliner (1852)


Charles Crawley
Assistant Master, Magdalen College School


John Hudson


Unoccupied, then
Rev. Edward A. Litton


Henry Quarterman,
carpenter and furnishing undertaker

Morley and Brewer, bookbinders

W. Ogden, builder and timber merchant

Charles James Wood, M.A.

R. W. White,
college servant


Henry Quarterman
Job Durran
W. Ogden
Morley & Brewer


Edward Brewer
(died 14 June 1875)

Mrs Lucretia Brewer (1881)


Thomas Morley (15½)

William Morley

Revd R. Faussett


Thomas Bateman & Son

with Joseph Greenaway
Livery stable keeper (1899 only)


with Mrs L. Bateman (1935–1936)

Thomas Morley (1889)

Miss Anne  Morley (1899, 1901))


Thomas Morley, bookbinder

Morley Brothers
Book binders by 1899

William Morley (1901)

Morley Bros, bookbinders (16A)


Mrs Fanny Webber (1901)

Miss Webber (1914)

William Nicholson
University lodging house


Hugh Howes


William E. Kettle


Miss Potter


Miss Bateman


+ B. F. Green,
furniture remover in 1945
and carpenter in 1954 & 1956

William Charles Rudd


Edward Baskerville



David Lincoln



Edward Baskerville

Mrs E. M. Hancock



Christopher G. T. Wheway


Sacher Building,
New College

At 15–18 Long Wall Street today

15, 16, & 17 Long Wall Street in the censuses


The 1841 census does not give house numbers, but it is possible to give a tentative assignment based on census order and known inhabitants

No. 15
James Watts
(60), a painter, lived here with Rachel Watts (55). Also in the house were Elizabeth Easte (50) with Richard and James, (both recorded as 20).

No. 16
John Hudson (63), independent, lived here with John (35), a servant, and an independent young lady Mary Cook (21).

No. 17
James Gadd (30), a college servant, lived here with Jane (30).


No. 15
John Beesley
(44), a painter, lived here with his wife Mary (55) and his children James (22), who was a shoemaker; Harriet (19); William (19), an apprentice tailor; and Thomas (15), who was still at school. A second part of the house was occupied by Nathaniel Parsons (36), a college servant, and his wife Maria (44) and children George (5) and Nathaniel (2), and a 14-year-old servant girl.

No. 16
Ann Wenn (49), a housekeeper, lived here with her lodger Daniel Trinder (22), who was an undergraduate, and one female servant.

No. 17
Thomas Bacon (34), a tailor’s foreman, lived here with his wife Helen (32), a milliner and dressmaker.


No. 15
John Beesley
(64), a widower and painter, lived here with his widowed daughter Sarah Poulton (42), his unmarried daughter Emily (34), and his granddaughter Emily Margetts (14). They had a child of seven boarding with them, and two lodgers occupied another part of the house.

No. 16

No. 17


No. 15
Henry Quarterman
(55), a builder, lived here with his wife Hannah (40), his children Alice (5) and Emily (1), and his niece Elizabeth Hanks (11). They had one servant.

No. 16
Edward Brewer (60), a retired bookbinder, lived here with his wife Lucretia (59), his children Maria (27), Annie (18), and his grandson Edward Brewer (5).

No. 17
Thomas Morley (69), a bookbinder employing nine men, lived here with his wife Sarah (59) and daughter Mary (21).


No. 15
Thomas Bateman
(45), a carpenter, lived here with his wife Elizabeth (41) and his children Wilson (16), Ernest (11), and Lilla Mary (8). They had a lodger and one servant.

No. 16
Lucretia Brewer (66), a widow with an income from houses, lived here with her three daughters Emma (3), Maria (27), and Annie (22), all described as having no occupation, and her grandson George Brewer (15), who was a bookbinder.

No. 17
Thomas Morley (69), a bookbinder, lived here with his wife Sarah (68) and his unmarried daughter Anne (46), who is described as a retired schoolmistress.


No. 15
Thomas Bateman
(56), a carpenter, still lived here with his wife Eliza (52), a lodging house keeper, and his children Wilson (26), Ernest (21), and Lilla (18). They had one servant.

No. 16
William Morley (51), a bookbinder, lived here with his wife Mary (51) and his son Frederick (2), who was an organist and teacher of music.

No. 17
Thomas Morley (79), a book binder, lived here with his wife Sarah (78) and their unmarried daughter Anne (56).


No. 15
Thomas Bateman
(63), a carpenter and now a widower, still lived here, with his son Ernest (31), who was also a carpenter, and his son’s wife Laura (32). They had one servant.

No. 16
William Morley (60), a bookbinder, lived here with his wife Mary (61) and his son Frederick (36), who was a teacher of music. They had a 14-year-old servant girl.

No. 17
Anne Morley (66), a spinster with her own means, lived here with her sister Mary (52) and Mary’s husband William (49), who was an unemployed clerk. They had one lodger.


No. 15
Thomas Bateman
(75), a widowed carpenter, still lived here with his son Ernest (41) and Ernest’s wife Laura (42) and their daughter Bessie (9). They had one servant.

No. 16
Fanny Webber (42), a married apartment keeper, lived here with two boarders: George Will (69), a retired Colonel in the Royal Artillery, and his wife Margaret (47).

No. 17
William Nicholson (59), a married boarding-house keeper, lived here.

Long Wall home

© Stephanie Jenkins

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