68 Holywell Street (former Boot Tavern)

68 Holywell Street

68 Holywell Street in painting by Matthison


Grade II Listed Building:
List Entry Number 1047241
(jointly listed with 69 next door to the east).

This house dates from the sixteenth century, and was altered in c.1800. Owned by New College.


68 Holywell Street was the Boot Tavern from the eighteenth century until the early twentieth century. It can be seen in the centre of the detail from a painting by Matthison in the early twentieth century (right).

68 Holywell Street in the censuses


The 1841 census for Holywell does not give house numbers, but it is possible to deduce where people listed that year lived by examining directory entries between 1839 and 1842 and later censuses

James Franklin (40), a porter, lived here with Ann (40) and John (15), Ann (15), Elizabeth (7), Jane (4), and Sarah (2).


Elizabeth Smith (61), a widowed public house keeper, lived here at the Boot Public House with her daughter and assistant Marianne (25). They had two lodgers: John Hearne (40), an unmarried distant relative who was a Post Office messenger, and a foreman in a cabinet maker’s shop.


Job Bushnell (62), a stonemason, lived here with his wife Martha (50) and his children Elizabeth (15), Sarah (14), William (11), and Clara (8); and his son-in-law James Holden, also a stonemason. There were also five lodgers: a stonemason, a carpenter, and two labourers (one with his wife).
Nos. 68 and 69 are transposed in this census, and Job Bushnell is incorrectly listed under 69


Job Bushnell (72), still listed as a stonemason, continued to live here with his wife Martha (60), who was now a laundress, and his daughter Clara (17), who was a dressmaker, and his granddaughter Susan Wilkinson (11). A groom lodged with them.


Thomas Thornton (54), a licensed victualler, lived at the “Boot Tavern” with his wife Elizabeth (50) and his granddaughter Florence (1). They had one servant (a cook).


Walter W. Wicking (30) was the publican & cellarman who lived here at “The Boot”, which is wrongly numbered 67 instead of 68. His wife Eliza (31) and sister-in-law Emma Herbert (25) lived with him.


Joseph Haskins (49), a publican and plumber, lived here with his wife Grace (47) and his children Joseph (23), a house painter, Florence (21, a bookbinder), Frederick (17), a printer’s apprentice, Ada (11), and Arthur (8). They have a 79-year-old charwoman lodging with them.


Walter Henry Beach (48), a plate powder manufacturer working on his own account, lived here with his wife Alice (44). Lodging with them was the architect John Egerton Thorpe (37).


Occupants of 68 Holywell Street listed in directories etc.

Survey of Oxford

Frontage: 8 yds 1 ft 9 in
Mr Clements


Boot Inn/Tavern/Public House, or just The Boot
(usually listed as “beer retailer” until 1871)

Some landlords:
1794: Richard Clements
1830: Mary Ann Clements
1839–1842: James Franklin
1846: William Taylor
1851: Elizabeth Smith
1852: John Green
1861–1876: Job Bushnell
1881–1884: Thomas Thornton
1887: William Cotterill, carpenter & joiner, beer & spirit retailer
1889: Mrs Cotterill
1894: Mrs Eliza Wicking
1896–1901: Joseph Haskins

Closed in c.1904 and became a private house


Mrs Beach

Walter Henry Beach
Plate powder manufacturer, by 1911


No separate listing: used by New College


New College annexe

Holywell home

© Stephanie Jenkins

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