NONSUCH ANTIQUARIAN SOCIETY
for Epsom, Ewell, Cheam and Banstead
No. 4 Occasional Paper March 1973
Epsom’s East End
Most of the following is extracted from the Chairman’s letter to the Town Clerk (25th August, 1972) showing the need for a considered conservation and development policy, for East Street and Upper High Street. Some of the buildings listed below have, alas, already disappeared.
In considering the ‘re-development of Epsom’s shopping centre there is a tendency to ignore its essentially linear nature. It really stretches from the edge of Rosebery Park in South Street, along the High Street to Norringtons in Upper High Street. with small spurs from it in West Street as far as the Railway, in Ashley Road as far as the Methodist Church, in Waterloo Road, as far as Waterloo Parade, in Church Street to the Baptist Church, arid in East Street .to some indeterminate point beyond the Baths Hall.
Attention has hitherto been focussed on the re-development of the High Street, but now that the Railway Hotel has been demolished, the potentialities for development in Upper High Street cannot be ignored, and a fresh look at the existing buildings may show which are worth preserving.
Upper High Street in its present form and the buildings along it are the creation of Victorian and Edwardian times and originally, of course, were, related to the Old Epsom Station ,built in 1847 when the West Croydon/Sutton/Epsom line, the first railway to Epsom, was built. The main buildings of the Old Station still survive at the rear of lock-up shops as far as the down-side is concerned, and, as part of Longhurst’s Timber Workshop, as far as the up-side is concerned. Most of the ancillary buildings in the Old Sidings have now been dismantled - the Edwardian Signal Box only a few months ago. The Old Station buildings are in a poor state, but there is no doubt that some of the Victorian and Edwardian buildings in Upper High Street should be conserved.
The Railway Hotel stood approximately opposite the forecourt of the Old Station where the growlers (horse drawn taxi-cabs) stood awaiting hire. It was a nice early Victorian rectangular building with stuccoed surrounds to its windows and doors and a stuccoed cornice. The same style is continued in the adjacent terrace of high Victorian houses, Nos. 40 - 44 Upper High Street - originally called “Railway Terrace”. Then a series of paired Victorian dwelling houses of contemporary age, Nos. 20 - 38 continue the line. These are, of course, woefully disfigured at present by the ugly fore-buildings thrown out over some of their front gardens, but while the main buildings stand intact, rehabilitation to dwellings or more sensitive conversion to shops is possible.
The same late-Regency-inspired Victorian style is to be seen in the Shop block, with waggon entrance to a rear unloading yard, now Nos. 1. – 5 High Street, opp. The Quadrant. This really good building is at present marred by a very ham-handed repair to two-thirds of its cornice, but a more sensitive restoration could and should be made.
The Congregational Hall is a rather heavy late-Gothic revival building, formerly a chapel, but with so much destruction of the architecture of the Victorian era going on, it is good to learn that its use as a church hall is to continue.
The other interesting Upper High Street building is the Parade of Shops Nos. 11 - 33. This is a nice Edwardian group of shops with dwellings over, carried out in red brick and decorated terracotta work. It matches in with, and continues the line of, Coppens’ Shop building (formerly Ormonde House) and Nos. 4 - 8 High Street round the corner which are charming red brick Edwardian buildings. Nos. 4 — 6, now the offices of the Halifax Building Society, have been sensitively restored and cleaned recently - an act for which Epsom owes a debt of gratitude to that Society.
Nos. 7/9 Upper High Street and the Shop Terrace Nos. 4 -14 are also quite pleasant Edwardian buildings (7/9 has an 1898 plaque on it, but stylistically the period 1890 - 1920 is one and maybe thought of as Edwardian).
In East Street there has been much destruction of worthwhile historic buildings, mainly 19th century boarded cottages. The few buildings in this area earlier than 1850 might well be preserved and rehabilitated as dwellings.
The long parallel strips on which the houses are built in Prospect Place, Linton’s Lane and Middle Lane preserve the lines of the selions of the northern of Epsom’s two common fields. The listing of these pre-1850 buildings for preservation would be a very useful measure, and Epsom should consider how it can use its rehabilitation powers to turn them into dwellings of reasonable standard. The same considerations, however, apply to the 19th century housing developments lying to the north and south of East Street:-
Garden Cottages, Linton’s Lane, Leith Road, Victoria Place, Middle Lane, Fairview Road on the north and Clayton Road, Prospect Place, Church Road (to the rail bridge), Providence Place, Beaconsfield Place on the south. Some of the buildings involved in these early 19th century developments are in flint with red brick bands - a local NE Surrey Style, come are boarded, others typical high Victorian small house building in brick, often in pairs. Some are in poor condition (e.g. in Prospect Place and Garden Cottages particularly), but all are capable of repair and conversion.
The public health department are at present engaged in putting closure orders on 33/37 East Street and Garden Cottages These orders could spell the death of all these properties, but they are among the most interesting of those involved. 33/37 is a good example of late Stuart Building with close resemblances, to Cromwell Lodge (Church Street), and 28/30 Waterloo Road in some of its details. It is framed in the rear and has a front of red brickwork rubbed and with narrow mortar seams in Flemish bond. It has all the characteristics of a spa period building. It is now in need of repair, but is not unrepairable in my view. It carried until recently, at No. 33, a fine Victorian trade sign – a lamp with a flue brush on top - and Tester and Tuck’s chimney sweeping business was conducted from here from the 1880’s until very recent years. The sign has been removed but efforts are being made, I understand, by, Mr. Hunter the museum curator to trace it. The Corporation should regard its acquisition either to remount on the building, or for exhibition in the museum, as of first priority It is an item that a major folk museum such as York would be very proud to possess.
Garden Cottages, which lie behind 33/37 on the same large plot, and in the same ownership, are a terrace of 21 small houses carried out in flint work with red brick bands and quoins. Built in 1867 as artisans’ cottages, they are an interesting example of such a group, akin to those put up near the enterprises employing them by many early factory masters, and I wonder if the original purpose in this case was for workers in the waterworks? They are in bad repair in places now, and, of course, very small, but have both front and rear approach and could be rehabilitated as old peoples’ cottages or turned into say 8 to 10 larger dwellings. I think some decisive’ action is needed on 33/37 and Garden Cottages now, first to get 33/37 listed, and secondly to rehabilitate both 33/37 and Garden Cottages as dwellings.
List of Buildings erected before 1920 and still standing in August, 1972
Note: Buildings earlier than 1850 are underlined
Upper High Street (from Church Street) (South side)
102 Armidale - Edwardian House
92/94 ) Victorian pairs of houses,
84/86 Woodnymph Cottages, plaque 1884
80/82 Woodbine Cottages, plaque 1883
70/78 Terrace of Victorian house
60/68 Terrace of late Victorian houses
50/52 Early Victorian pair
40/44 Terrace of high Victorian houses’, originally called ”Railway Terrace”
28/30 ) Pairs of Victorian houses of the 1860s
24/26 ) now mostly converted to shops
16/18 Front of shops, and at rear Congregational Church Hall – late Victorian Gothic
12/14 Late Victorian shop terrace
4/10 Edwardian shop terrace
Upper High Street (North side)
7/9 Double Fronted Plaque 1898 (formerly the Conservative Club)‚
11/33 Edwardian shop terrace “Sainsbury’s Terrace”.
High Street (between Upper High St. and East St.)
2 Edwardian (Ormonde House)
4/8 Edwardian Shop Terrace
East Street - South Side
2/4/8 Victorian block double gable ends, 1890s
10/12 Victorian block central waggon entrance, 1880s
14/16 No. 16 now stuccoed, 1870s
Flint Cottage Low hipped slate roof flint with brick bands, 1843
Bankside Victorian, 1850s
40/42/44 Georgian cottages in stucco on lath, Old shop window at No.40
46/48 Victorian pair with Victorian shop window 1860s
Red Lion Public house now closed and ready for demolition, Victorian building
92/94/96 Georgian terrace now with Victorian shops on front of plots
102/104 Victorian cottage pair
108 Victorian house of 1850s rather distinctive and pleasant
110/112 Brick built Victorian pair., well set back
114/116 Victorian pair with early Royal Firemark. 116 has early shop window
132/134 Victorian brick pair
136/138 Edith Cottages, plaque 1880, Victorian brick pair
140/142 Early Cottages, plaque 1881, Victorian brick pair
Kings Arms Early Victorian with low hipped roof, nice decoration round door
158/160 Last pair in this part of road of boarded and framed early 19th century cottages
East Street - North Side
1/3 Victorian of 1860s, now Icelandic Fish Shop
5 The Rifleman, Victorian of 1860. Surrey Volunteer Rifle Regiment is here celebrated
Epsom C. of E. School An 1840 Building in front, with Edwardian additions to rear, and now used as a youth club
19/21 ) Pairs of boarded cottages with central stacks and porches. Mid 19th century.
23/25 ) Detached house similar to above, now divided
Plough & Harrow Public House Victorian front on 18th century framed and boarded buildings
33/37 Double depth brick with side stacks and framing on sides and rear. Late 17th century, quite a good building
Garden Cottages Off East Street, flint built with red brick bands and quoins. Terrace of twenty cottages built in 1867 with front and back
53/55 ) Victorian small house pairs about 1870.
57/59 ) All except No. 61 now shops
The Locomotive Public House, mid Victorian
97/99 Large Victorian House, gable ended sections at both sides
133/135 ) Edwardian pairs
137/139 Late Victorian pair
Gresham Cottage Mid Victorian double fronted house
Elvaston Late Victorian, and another small house pair
Lynton House Good Victorian house with stables – now a school
Layshaw House Edwardian house
St. Margarets & Patio Cottage Large Edwardian house, now divided
Cleredown & Beaumont Late Victorian house now divided
Namels Late Victorian house
Invermene House Large mid-Victorian house
Mulberry Cottage Early 19th century lath and stucco on softwood frame. Low hipped slate roof
Hollycroft Brick with tile roof, storey bands and parapet, early 19th century
The Elders Large Victorian house. Fine Tuscan porch
(In the original publication these houses were recorded under East Street. Mulberry Cottage and Hollycroft were originally identified by the author, Norman Nail, as 18th century properties but the 1802 Ewell map shows open land)
Nos.1/3 and No. 5 East Street form the entry to Adelphi Road
2 Victorian double fronted l870s.
4/6 Victorian stuccoed pair 1870s.
8/l0/12/14 Red brick Victorian terrace, mid 1860s
16/18 Red brick pair, mid 1860s.
28 Double fronted version of 20/26
30/34 Red brick pair like 16/18
36/38 Queen’s Cottages, similar to 30/34 and with plaque of 1871
40/42/44 Red brick group of three
46/48 Chestnut Cottages, with plaque of 1870. Group at west end of road
50/43 46/48 and 41/39, two storeys on either side of 50/43 in centre with three
27/29 ) Pairs of the 1870s
15/17 Stuccoed group different style from 25/35, and possibly earlier
11/13 Boarded and framed pair, central stack, early Victorian
7/9 Alpha cottages, Victorian pair in white brick 1861
3/5 Boarded and framed pair, like 11/13 on different building line from Alpha
Hook Road (from Railway Bridge to East Street)
14/16 Beatrice Cottages 1899
10/12 Boarded and framed cottage pair with red brick central stack, Double depth,
18th century, and very good building of its type
2 Victorian pair, enlarged and now one house
14/16/18/20 Victorian Terraces (opposite school)
Pairs of Victorian houses similar to East Street end of Hook Road
1/3 Early Victorian pair
5 Victorian pair, now one
7 Victorian pair, now one
11 18th century house, now much reconstructed
15/17 Red brick and flint Victorian pair
10/12 Boarded and framed pair. Early 19th Cent.
18/20/22 Late Victorian group
Middle Lane - North Side
3/5 Georgian pair, double depth
11/13) Victorian pairs with central stacks
23/25 Early Victorian, low hipped roofs
Middle Lane - South Side
Five late Victorian terraces of six Cottages each
Fair View Road
1,2,3,4. Nonsuch Cottages, early Victorian Terrace
Remains of Timber barn on brick pedestal wall
6/8 Brick and flint Victorian pair
10/12 Alma Cottages, stuccoed Victorian pair
7 Victorian detached house
Prospect Place - North Side Lane
1 Red brick and flint double fronted Victorian cottage
3/5 Low two storied cottage pair. Segmental arches on windows. Red
brick below, boarded above. Date plaque 1819
7/9 Red brick double fronted pair, Victorian
11/13 Flint and brick pair. 13 has wall shored. Victorian
15/17 Red brick pair similar to 7/9
Prospect Place – South Side Lane
Rose Cottage Red brick ornate windows and doors, elaborate barge boards. Built with Bugby
Chapel 1779 and altered in 1873 (plaque)
Bugby Chapel Roof of red tiles, wall now stuccoed. Smallgraveyard with stones. Formerly a non-conformist chapel, 18th century,
restored in Victorian times, now a synagogue
Church Road (to Railway Bridge)
St. John’s Church Chapel of ease built in 1884
1/3 Paradise Cottages. Mid Victorian pair
2/12 Terrace of five, mid Victorian date
14/16/18 Victorian. 14 now shop and 16 origina11y a corner shop now empty
1/15 & 2/16 Stuccoed mid Victorian cottage pairs
17/33 & 18/24 Terraces of 4 similar cottages
20 Double fronted house, side on to road. Plaque 1884
21/22 ) Victorian pairs
9/16 ) Terraces with gardens backing on each other, late Victorian
4/6 Victorian bungalow
10/12 Edwardian pair
13 Edwardian house
15 Edwardian house
3 Edwardian bungalow
5 Victorian house
Bush Lodge Large Victorian house and stables
Park Hill Road
1/2 ) Victorian pairs of 1870s
19 The Orchard, large Victorian double-fronted house