ST GILES’, OXFORD

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Nos. 22–23: St John’s College accommodation


22-23 St Giles

22-23 old

 

Nos. 22 and 23 date from the early seventeenth century, but have nineteenth-century stuccoed fronts and are considerably restored. They are jointly Grade II listed (List Entry No. 1065714), and belonged to Christ Church until about 1999, when they were bought by St John’s College.

 

 

The detail on the left from an old postcard shows No. 23 with a bow window added downstairs: the card probably dates from the 1920s, when it was a tea-room. The very high building to the left was demolished in the 1960s to make way for the Mathematical Institute

 


No. 22

When the 1772 Survey of Oxford was taken, No. 22 (with its frontage measured as 6 yards and 5 inches) was occupied by a Mr Smith.

At the time of the 1841 census, the house was occupied by Miss Deborah Brain, a landed proprietor, who was still there in 1861, when she was 57. By 1881 it was used as a college house, and was occupied by George Shorey, a college servant, and his wife and children, and a student boarder.

No. 23

At the time of the 1772 Survey of Oxford, No. 23 (with its frontage measured as 5 yards 1 foot 9 inches) was occupied by a Mr Fowle.

In 1841 it was occupied by William Richard Hobbs, an accountant, who lived there with his wife and two children and a servant. Forty years later he was still there, at the age of 69, with his wife and three of his grown-up children.

It was a shop from 1903 to 1967.


In 1967 the current owner of the two houses, Christ Church, was granted planning application for “conversion of shop and residential to wholly residential”. They were bought by St John’s College, who extended them at the rear in 1999 and use them as college accommodation.

Occupants listed in censuses and directories

Date

22 St Giles

23 St Giles

1841

Mrs E. Smallbones

William Richard Hobbs
Accountant

1841–1861

Miss Deborah Brain

1866–1872

Richard Berry Hobbs
Rate collector

1875–1881

George Shorey

1882

Joseph A. Partridge

Mrs Hobbs

1884–1887

Adams & Son
Plumbers, painters, & decorators

1889–1894

Adams & Son
Plumbers, painters, & decorators

1895–1899

Mrs M. Paterson
University Lodgings

Adams & Son
Plumbers, painters, & decorators

1900–1901

Arthur John Adams
Builder

1903–1904

Mrs H. Smith
Milliner

1905–1906

Mrs Berrill & Hobbs
Milliners

1907–1908

Miss Berrill
Milliner

1909–1923

Miss E.H. Robson
Milliner

1925

Miss E.H. Robson
Tea Rooms

1928–1932

William Simmonds & Son
Coal merchants

1935–1954

Miss Gertrude Alder
University Lodging House

1956–1968

Handel Davies

1968–1987

Handel Davies
Student and Mathematics tutor at Christ Church

1987–c.1999

Continued as Christ Church accommodation

c.1999–present

St John’s College accommodation

These houses were originally known as “St Giles 1st Tenement” and “St Giles 2nd Tenement”. Christ Church lessees (who were not necessarily the occupiers) included the following:

22 St Giles (1st Tenement): Leases

  • 1612: Henry Page of the Inner Temple (with St Giles 2nd Tenement)
  • 1626: William Chillingworth of St Ebbe’s, maltster, of this “garden ground (whereuppon a messuage is builded, now in th’occupacon partly of Jane Boseley, widow and partly of Thomas Browne, husbandman)
  • 1650: Mercy Penne of St Giles
  • 1669: Renewal of lease of Mercy Penne, also of her son Mathew Penne, baker
  • 1683: Henry Page of Oxford, ale-brewer, and Edward Prince, gent.
  • 1687/8: William Langford of the University of Oxford, cook
  • 1714: Renewal of lease of Mary Langford (widow of William)
  • 1728/9: Mary Sherwin of Oxford, widow, executrix of Mary Langford
  • 1744: William Evans of St Giles, rag merchant
  • 1758: Timothy Evans of the University of Oxford, hat maker, and Robert Hobbins of St. Duke’s, London, coal merchant
  • 1782: Edward Jennings Wise of Oxford, poulterer
  • 1795: James Costar of Oxford, grocer (trustee for John Wise, son of E.J. Wise)
  • 1800: Purchase of lease by James Costar for £600 from Edward Bigg of Benson, Oxon., farmer, executor of E.J. Wise
  • 1823: Thomas Brain of St. Peter-in-the-Bailey, butcher

23 St Giles (2nd Tenement): Leases

  • 1612: Henry Page of the Inner Temple (with St Giles 1st Tenement)
  • 1626: Henry Hutchinson of London, mercer
  • 1650: Silvester Hutchinson, daughter of William Hutchinson of Yate, Glos.
  • 1672: Thomas Rowney of the University of Oxford, gent.
  • 1704: Thomas Rowney the younger of Oxford, esq. [built St Giles House at No. 16 in 1702, died 1759)
  • 1734/5: Thomas Rowney [the son of Thomas Rowney the younger]
  • 1763: The Hon. Robert Lee of Lee Place, Oxford
  • 1799: Sale to the Duke of Marlborough for £105, reserving rent.

22 & 23 St Giles (1st & 2nd Tenements)

  • 1842: Richard Smallbones of Oxford, gent., and Elizabeth his wife, and to Deborah Brain, spinster, for £55 consideration – now two tenements occupied by Deborah Brain [22] and by William Hobbes [23], with the Windmill [24 St Giles] to the north and Joseph Parker, esq. [21 St Giles], to the south.
  • 1862: Draft licence to Deborah Brain to assign (Elizabeth Smallbones having died on 10 October 1858)

St Giles’ home

Stephanie Jenkins

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