Sir Edgar Boehm's Country House, Bent's Brook. Accompanying the drawings by Marcus B. Adams, artist of the studio houses in Melbury Road, Kensington, is the following article:

ARTISTS' homes: no. 14, "Bent's Brook."

One of our double-page plates to-day illustrates the residence of Mr. J. E. Boehm, A.R.A., the Sculptor. Bent's Brook is situated at Holmwood, not far south of Dorking, on the Mid-Sussex line [however, Holmwood is in Surrey], and commands some fine views of well-timbered country. The site itself is comparatively low, and the soil being clay, it was advisable to keep the building well out of the ground, and in this way a rather unusually high elevation for such a house was obtained. The plan is very compactly arranged, with an ingenious approach to the well-centred hall and staircase, over which, by a mezzanine contrivance, a good store-place is secured. The drawing-room has a belvedere bay, reached from the garden by an external stair, under which is a covered-garden seat. A balcony overlooking the garden leads also from the drawing-room, and a billiard-room is arranged on the basement-level with a separate entrance from the porch. A tradesmen's entrance is provided elsewhere. The kitchen and offices are on the lower-floor level, and a kitchen-yard is conveniently placed at the rear. Red brick, with cut-brick dressings, is the material used throughout for the walls, the upper parts of which are hung with ornamental tiles. The gables are enriched with wide, massive barge-boards, and thereof is surmounted with a white wooden cupola over the principal staircase. The terra-cotta panels along the entrance front, over the principal-floor windows, were designed by Mr. Boehm himself. The work was executed by Mr. H. Batchelor, builder, of Betchworth, and the architect of the house was Mr. R. W. Edis, F.S.A., who superintended its erection (165).

Additional comments

Shirley Nicholson has kindly passed on to us some information from historian Kathy Atherton, who tells us that "Bent's Brook no longer exists; the site now forms part of a housing estate. However Boehm's studio, on the other side of the road, still exists as a private residence though the walls of glass have been somewhat altered from their original design. A cast of Boehm's hand was found in the garden of a nearby cottage in the 1950s." Apparently the house was sold at auction in 1936, but was demolished by the 1950s, when new housing was developed there.

Holmwood Station on the Southern line, originally on the London, Brighton, and South Coast Railway line to Portsmouth, opened in 1867. The area around Dorking became a very popular place for well-to-do Victorian Londoners' second homes, but the grandest such homes were often pulled down to make way for new housing developments in the mid-twentieth century. No doubt both Boehm and his architect, Edis, would have been disappointed to see this change.

Images and text from the Building News and Engineering Journal found, downloaded and formatted by Jacqueline Banerjee. Information about artist Marcus B. Adams from Shirley Nicholson. You may use these images without prior permission for any scholarly or educational purpose as long as you (1) credit the photographer and (2) link your document to this URL, or cite it in a print one. [Click on the images to enlarge them.]

Link to reklated material


"Building News and Engineering Journal. Vol 41 (1881): following p.168. Internet Archive, from a copy in the Gerstein — University of Toronto. Web. 12 November 2021.

"Trains to Holmwood." Trainline. Web. 12 November 2021.

Created 11 November 2021