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Barwythe Hall Studham

The front of Barwythe about 1900 [Z1306/117]
The front of Barwythe about 1900 [Z1306/117]

This property has gone by a number of names. It was Barwythe or Barwythe House for much of its existence. At the time of writing [2010] it is called Barwythe Hall.

Until the county boundary was changed in 1897 Barwythe Hall stood in the portion of Studham in Hertfordshire. It is quite possible that the huilding stands near the site of the medieval Manor of Barworth and its chapel.

The Rating and Valuation Act 1925 specified that every piece of land and building in the country was to be assessed to determine the rates to be paid on it. Studham was assessed at the end of 1926 and the valuer visiting Barwythe, as it was then called [DV1/C21/78] commented: "Saw Butler". The property, in just over 11.5 acres was then owned and occupied by Frank Turner ("bought the house about 1920"). The lower floor comprised a porch, library with a bay window, south-facing dining room ("nice panelling") with a bay window, south-facing morning room with a bay window, 30 feet by 11 feet conservatory ("Radiators in"), drawing room ("Windows through to Conservatory on south") and billiard room with a bay window. "At back" were a W. C., a lavatory (in the sense of a place to wash), housekeeper's sitting room, entrance lobby, servants' hall, larder, scullery and kitchen, then through a passage, a W. C., pantry ("[meat] safe in") and butler's bedroom.

Up the front stairs, from the hall, lay two bedrooms and two bathrooms, a double bedroom, sitting room, two further bathrooms, a W. C. and a north facing bedroom. The second floor comprised a double maids' room in the attic, two single attic rooms, a box room, a bathroom with a W. C. and a separate W. C.

The servants' wing comprised, on the first floor, a W. C. with a radiator, a housemaid's cupboard, a bathroom with a wash basin, a housemaids' sitting room. A linen room and a wireless and gun room. On the second floor of this wing lay two double and two single servants' bedrooms, a wardrobe cupboard, a bathroom with washbasin and a "room with ladder for reaching roof".

A cellar lay under the house containing a wine cellar, two coal cellars, a boiler house and a small pump room. Just outside the back door were two coal cellars, a W. C., a weather-boarded and corrugated iron boot hole, bicycle and dark room and a brick and slate larder and old stoke hole.

Barwythe House and grounds in 1926
Barwythe House and grounds in 1926

The grounds were as follows, as annotated on the accompanying map:

  • A: a two up, two down brick and tile cottage in the grounds was vacant ("Not even used for stores"); a footman's bedroom and bathroom, a three stall stable ("used for lumber") with two store rooms over, a laundry ("unused"), two coal cellars and a W. C.; a brick and tile garage for two cars ("brick floor") and a washing place outside; a brick and tile battery room and engine house with a ten horsepower oil engine; a weather-boarded and corrugated iron store shed and octagonal open wood shed and a weather-boarded garage for two cars with a small lean-to workshop.
  • B: a brick-built lodge, occupied by G. Ling, the chauffeur and comprising a living room, kitchen, scullery and three bedrooms above with a W. C. and coal shed outside. Nearby lay a brick and slate petrol store and a weather-boarded and felt range of dog kennels.
  • C: a kitchen garden containing three greenhouses, measuring 24 feet by 10 feet 6 inches, 20 feet by 14 feet 6 inches and 24 feet 6 inches by 10 feet 6 inches and a brick lean-to potting shed and stoke hole.
  • D: the gardener occupied a "nice" cement and tile cottage comprising a reception room, kitchen, scullery and larder downstairs with three bedrooms and a bathroom above. Water was laid on, but there was no electric light. A brick and tile barn stood outside.
  • E: a brick and tile potting shed and a weather-boarded and corrugated iron lean-to shed; a brick, flint and tile row of three old four room terraced cottages used as stores and a mess room and three weather-boarded and tiled barns.
  • F: homestead buildings comprised two brick and tile pigsties, two calf barns and a cow house for ten beasts ("unused"), an earth closet ("unused"), an implement shed with a loft over and a corrugated iron three bay open-fronted implement shed with a loft over.
  • G: on the terrace a brick summer house.
  • H: an orchard of three-quarters of an acre.
  • J: two grass tennis courts.
  • K: a terraced lawn in front of the house.
  • L: a walled kitchen garden ("good") of one acre.
  • M: a rose garden.

Summing-up the valuer commented: "A large and complete Mansion but rather lacking in attractiveness. Quite up to date". Another hand wrote: "Lovely House and right up to date". The valuer observed: "Make own Electric light. Water pumped by Engine from well. Cess pool drainage. Central heating. Radiators in principle rooms downstairs. Not in bedrooms but some in passages on first floor. Dunstable 5 miles away. Use Boxmoor Station 8 miles".

Bedfordshire and Luton Archives and Records Service has sale particulars of the sale of the Barwythe Estate by auction in 1945 [BG7/8/11] when, as well as the impressive house, Bury Farm of 236 aces, 2 roods 32 poles, two cottages and Elm Grove of 29 acres, 18 poles were sold.

The house was described thus:

One of the choicest Residential Properties in this much favoured neighbourhood, beautifully situated in a finely timbered setting, enjoying a lovely outlook to the South-west over lawns with Parkland beyond, sloping away to a sheltered valley.

THE MELLOWED RED BRICK AND TILED HOUSE believed to be of Queen Anne origin has a Mansard roof on the garden front and the entrance front is gabled. It has been unfailingly well maintained by the present owners over a period of many years and is in first class condition.

Many rooms have painted walls and ceilings, the Hall and Library are Oakley panelled. The rooms are of characteristic Georgian proportions, having lofty ceilings and large sash windows. The reception rooms are floored throughout in oak and have fine fireplaces.

The house is approached from a quiet lane by a drive about 75 yards in length with a brick and tiled Entrance Lodge (now unoccupied) containing 4 rooms, bathroom, with basin and W. C., scullery, electric light, etc.

The drive terminates at a broad car turn on the North-east side of the house where an enclosed porch with flagged floor, 2 radiators and double doors, leads to the following accommodation: -

 The hall in 1945 [BG7/8/11]
The hall in 1945 [BG7/8/11]

Oak Panelled SITTING HALL

30 feet by 29 feet 6 inches and 10 feet in height, with oak floor and staircase with gallery, open fireplace with stone chimney piece.

Oak Panelled Corridor with doors to terrace on the South-west side.

DRAWING ROOM (S. W. AND N. E.)

29 feet 6 inches by 19 feet, with two radiators, polished steel fireplace and ornamental plaster ceiling in Adam style.

Adjoining is a Spacious, Stone Flagged Enclosed LOGGIA
With 3 large round headed windows on ground level

LIBRARY (S. W.)

21 feet 4 inches by 17 feet 8 inches, with painted panelled walls, open fireplace for basket grate, oak floor and door to Loggia.

Oak Panelled SITTING ROOM (S.W.)

21 feet 6 inches by 17 feet 6 inches, with stone chimney piece and fireplace for basket grate.

The dining room in 1945 [BG7/8/11] 
The dining room in 1945 [BG7/8/11]

DINING ROOM (N.E.)

16 feet 3 inches by 18 feet, with painted panelled walls in the Georgian style, Georgian fireplace with hob grate, radiator and oak floor. 

OFFICE or STUDY

Adjoining is a Flower Room with garden entrance

Large Cloakroom and separate W. C.

 

EXCEPTIONALLY GOOD SELF-CONTAINED OFFICES

Comprising

Butler's Pantry with built-in plate safe

Butler's Bedroom

Housekeeper's Room

Large Lofty Kitchen with point for electric cooker and coal range

White tiled Larder

Tiled Scullery with 2 sinks

Outside Game Larder 

On the First Floor:

Parquet floored Landing with radiator.

Suite of

PRINCIPAL BEDROOM (No. 1)

23 feet by 16 feet

BED or DRESSING ROOM (No. 2)

Well equipped with built-in hanging cupboards and drawers

And

Half-tiled BATHROOM (No. 1)

And W. C. 

BATHROOM (No. 2)

Half tiled, with mosaic tiled floor. Separate W. C.

DOUBLE BEDROOM (No. 3)

22 feet by 18 feet, with painted panelled walls and

half tiled BATHROOM (No. 3)

en suite
with W. C. marble top basin, inlaid floor and range of built-in cupboards with drawers under

BEDROOM or NURSERY (No. 4)

16 feet 3 inches by 16 feet

DOUBLE BEDROOM (No. 5)

21 feet 8 inches by 18 feet 

DOUBLE BEDROOM (No. 6)

18 feet by 16 feet 3 inches 

ON THE LANDING OFF THE BACK STAIRS IS

A Large DOUBLE BEDROOM (No. 7)

Linen Room with extensive built-in cupboards

SINGLE BEDROOM (No. 8)

Adjoining

Half Tiled BATHROOM (No. 4) 

Housemaid's Pantry. Separate W. C.

 

On the Top Floor are

THREE LARGE BEDROOMS

Very suitable for a Nursery Suite, each with fitted basin and one with radiator 

TWO BATHROOMS (Nos. 5 and 6)

One (with W. C.) en suite with the largest bedroom, also separate W. C.

ON THE SAME FLOOR ARE

THREE LARGE AND A FOURTH SMALLER BEDROOMS

For Staff

Also

STAFF BATHROOM (No. 7)

With W. C. and basin

Linen Room 

Housemaid's Cupboard with two basins.

There are extensive Cellars under the house containing separate boilers for the domestic hot water service and central heating. Here also is an auxiliary electric pump for water for use in case of emergency.

COMPANY'S ELECTRICITY

With ample lighting and power points 

CENTRAL HEATING

Throughout the ground floor and in certain bedrooms. 

WATER SUPPLY. There is a first class and most ample supply from a bore hole 475 feet deep, pumped by electric engine to a 5,000 gallon steel water tower (giving high pressure) from which the supply is gravity fed to storage tanks of 2,500 gallon capacity in the roof of the house. This supply is connected to the buildings and cottages which form part of this lot and also to the two cottages, Lots 3 and 4.

DRAINAGE. The drains are laid in white glazed ware pipes and taken to a septic tank in the woods to the south-west of the house

Excellent Outbuildings 

Adjacent to the house, comprise: - brick and tiled Garage for three cars with glass covered wash; two single Garages; Stabling of four Loose Boxes; Harness Room with loft over; large brick and tiled Workshop with Engine House adjoining with pumping plant and switch gear. Detached timber built and iron roofed Garage for three cars. Adjoining the stable is a Chauffeur's Cottage of three rooms, kitchen, scullery, bath, wash-house and indoor W. C. Electric light and estate water. Hot water from the house supply.

Nearby in a secluded setting is a modern brick built

Squash Racquets Court

With electric light etc., and spectator's gallery [annotated: "now converted to cottage"] 

Very Finely Timbered Grounds

Surround the house and form a perfect setting. On the south-west side is a broad flagged terrace, beyond which, at a slightly lower level, is a formal lawn inset with flower beds. On a still lower level is a spacious tennis lawn (now over-grown) and beyond this a park-like field with woods in the distance.

Hard Tennis Court

With attractive timber and tiled Summer House (the court needs renovation). Rose Garden (over-grown); well maintained WalledGarden of about three-quarters of an acre in full cultivation with a variety of fruit trees in full bearing. Against the northern wall is a range of heated glass houses. Nearby are other glass houses including a modern 80 feet span roof 4-sectiuon greenhouse, another 30 feet span roof house, and a 60 feet run of three-quarter span glass. Range of garden buildings including boiler house, old stable, large fruit store with slatted shelves; brick and tiled tool shed and a semi-derelict brick and tiled cottage. Large fruit cage.

Head Gardener's Cottage 

An attractive small house, brick built, cement faced, with tiled roof, containing pleasant sitting room, kitchen with dual purpose stove, large scullery with sink (hot and cold) and copper; three bedrooms (two with fireplaces), bathroom (hot and cold) and basin; W. C., Electric light and estate water, Occupied by the head gardener, rent free on a service tenancy.

The memorandum at the rear of the particulars state that the house sold for £11,000. the buyers were Edgware [Middlesex] solicitor Edward Warner Moeran and Hatch End [Middlesex] engineer Edgar Joseph de Normanville.

The Bedfordshire Historic Environment Record [HER 7460] notes that there used to be a Wheel House with a Donkey Wheel at Barwythe Hall, just as there was at Studhamhall Farm. It was a timber framed building with a roof that sloped on all four sides and stood in the grounds.

Directories reveal the following people living at the house (directories were not annual, and so the dates should not be regarded as beginning and end dates: 1890-

1898 Ladies Emma and Charlotte Osborne;
1906 Ernest Alexander;
1910-1914 Samuel Tyzack;
1920-1928 Frank Turner;
1931-1936 Harold L. Cohen JP;
1940 Mrs. Cohen

Papers held by Bedfordshire and Luton Archives and Records Service reveal that until his death on 23rd February 1964 Arthur William Gerald Bagshawe of Dunstable chain-making firm Bagshawe & Company Limited, owned and inhabited the house [BG7/1-8]. It is possible that Moeran and Normanville were acting for him in 1945, since the sale particular is in the Bagshawe archive; or perhaps he purchased the house from them. Bagshawes had been founded by A. W. G. Bagshawe's father, also Arthur. During World War Two the factory made conveyor belts for Royal Ordnance factories and caterpillar tracks for Bren gun carriers. The firm was taken over by Thomas Tilling Limited in 1954.

Bedfordshire and Luton Archives and Records Service holds the Studham Parish Council archive. In the archive is a licence application by the owner of Barwythe in 1976, Frederick Holmes Charnley [PCStudham30/1].