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Strangers Corner

A Grade II Listed Building in Farnham, Surrey

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Coordinates

Latitude: 51.2065 / 51°12'23"N

Longitude: -0.7845 / 0°47'4"W

OS Eastings: 485007

OS Northings: 145960

OS Grid: SU850459

Mapcode National: GBR DBB.6GT

Mapcode Global: VHDY2.CX3Y

Entry Name: Strangers Corner

Listing Date: 11 May 2010

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1393788

English Heritage Legacy ID: 505748

Location: Farnham, Waverley, Surrey, GU9

County: Surrey

District: Waverley

Civil Parish: Farnham

Built-Up Area: Farnham

Traditional County: Surrey

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Surrey

Church of England Parish: The Bourne

Church of England Diocese: Guildford

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Listing Text

FARNHAM

884/0/10024 TILFORD ROAD
11-MAY-10 88
Strangers Corner

II
House (1897) with added studio (1902), by Harold Falkner for his former art master WH Allen who founded Farnham School of Art. Queen Anne style.

MATERIALS: Red brick entrance fa├žade in Flemish bond, tile-hung rear upper floor, gables and cheeks to some upper windows. The upper floor of the studio is pebble-dash rendered over a brick lower floor which has brick buttresses against the northern wall; all of which is painted;the rear wall is of buff brick. Roofs are plain tiled, flared over deep cornices.

PLAN: the main range of 1897 is arranged on two storeys with attics with full dormers, the entrance front of five symmetrical bays. The roof is gabled to the south and hipped at the north over the studio. The studio range of 1902 is of two storeys set at right angles to the main range, and has a hipped east facing roof and gabled roof on the garden elevation. The first-floor studio has a separate external ground-floor entrance and is also reached from within the house at first floor level.Brick chimney stacks are slightly battered and set on the southern gable wall and inset at the rear behind the ridge.

EXTERIOR: the entrance front has a narrow broken-pedimented doorcase enriched with scrolled brackets and a carved foliate swag over the door which is of six panels, the lower panels moulded the upper glazed. Above is a tall semi-circular oriel window. Windows are nine-over-nine-pane timber sashes under gauged red brick arches; upper-floor windows are set close under a deep, painted timber modillion cornice, beneath flared eaves. Hipped dormers have two-light casements each of twelve panes.

The studio wing projects forwards from the main range, under a half-hipped roof and with a slender stack at the northern angle. The upper floor flares slightly over the ground floor, supported on brackets or dentils and has a dentilled eaves course beneath projecting eaves with exposed rafter feet. The entrance has a deep but narrow round-headed moulded architrave with a carved head as keystone, under a shaped canopy. The door is of two raised panels beneath an overlight. Above, is a two-light casement with rectangular leaded lights. The north wall is divided in three bays by brick buttresses. At first floor is a large round-headed north-facing window also with rectangular leaded lights, and with tile-hung cheeks, beneath a flat, projecting canopy. Ground-floor windows are two-light casements beneath segmental arches.

The rear of the house is asymmetrically arranged. A pedimented doorcase is flanked by small-paned fixed lights. Other ground-floor windows on the main range are altered and a conservatory which is not of special interest has been added. Upper-floor windows are small-paned casements in tile-hung dormers, and like the front elevation half-hipped at attic level, while the principal bedroom has a large flat-roofed window bay with three nine-over-nine-pane sashes. The studio range has a cambered arched ground-floor window and at first floor a horizontally arranged five-light oriel with a coved base, under a pitched tiled roof. The gable above is tile hung.

INTERIOR: the ground-floor plan has been altered a little but the sitting room and hall retain panelled dados and moulded cornices, the sitting room has an alcove with a fleur de lys head and shaped shelves,all now painted; the hall ceiling has exposed unpainted joists; doors and some architraves have enriched moulded panels. The principal bedroom on the first floor has a tall moulded dado and deep cornice, a moulded fireplace surround and built-in cupboards with drawers, also all painted. Attic: includes a cast iron fireplace in a reeded surround. A pair of double doors, beneath a canopy raised on brackets, lead to the studio, which is a single open space. It has an open-truss roof, unpainted panelled walls, the panelling very likely re-used, and a fireplace in the north angle with a heavy corbelled mantelpiece supported on fluted piers. The oriel window on the garden front creates a low window bay with a deep window cill set under a cambered arch. The studio closely resembles sketches of WH Allems(sic) studio.

HISTORY: Strangers Corner is of interest both as a house which falls early in the career of Harold Falkner but also for the studio attached to it. House and studio were built for WH Allen who influenced Falkner's early training. The School of Art was one of many across the country which were founded toward the end of the C19, reflecting the increased emphasis on arts and crafts based teaching, which is strongly expressed in Fallkner's work. The architect's ability as an accomplished draughtsman is seen in his drawings of the house and studio; the design and elevation were exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1901 and illustrated in the Builders' Journal in 1902, and Supplement to the Architectural Review in 1900.

Harold Falkner (1876-1963) was a prolific and versatile locally based architect and very able draughtsman who, according to R Gradidge writing in 1991, 'transformed not to say recreated Farnham in the early years of this century'. After studying at Farnham School of Art, he trained in Reginald Blomfield's office and moved on from 1902-6 to work with Edwardian domestic architects Niven and Wigglesworth and later in his career with Maxwell Aylwin. He combined late-C19 revivalist and neo-Georgian ideas with the Arts and Crafts practices for which Surrey was noted, often re-using architectural fabric such as timber framed barns to create new traditionally built houses. He contributed to the Cheap Cottages Exhibition, Letchworth in 1905.

Over forty years, he enlarged or reconstructed existing and imported buildings at Dippenhall, a village two miles west of Farnham, to create substantial vernacular revival houses. In Farnham itself, his work ranged from the swimming baths built in 1897, to the restoration of the Goat's Head public house (Grade II*) , the new town hall built in 1932, and refronting of the Bailiff's hall in 1934 (both Grade II). Large private houses on the outskirts of Farnham include the Grade II listed Mavins End of 1927 and Montclare House of 1908, which is similar in manner to the smaller Strangers Corner. Within the area he built The Chase, Churt; Ripley House Liphook; and Tancred's Ford, Tilford.

The house stands in intact grounds which show traces of the original garden layout. Although these are not included in the listing, they contribute to the the setting of the house;the roadside garden is retained behind a stone rubble wall with brick buttresses and has a wooden gate with a shaped head between timber post with ball finials and a slender overthrow.

SOURCES:
Gradidge, R, The Surrey Style (1991)
Gray, S, Edwardian Architecture (1985), 176
Osmond, S, Harold Falkner: More than an Arts and Crafts Architect (2003)
Walkley, G, Artists' Houses in London 1764-1914, (1994)

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Michael Drury, Falkner, Harold (1875-1963)http://www.oxforddnb.com/accessed 29 October 2009

REASONS FOR DESIGNATION
Strangers Corner, designed in 1897 and extended in 1902 by Harold Falkner (1876-1963) for WH Allen, is designated at Grade II for the following principal reasons:
* Architectural interest: house in Queen Anne style, and Aesthetic inspired studio, by Harold Falkner, who was a significant architect in the Surrey arts and crafts tradition
* Plan: a house and studio built for WH Allen, founder of Farnham School of Art, where Falkner was a student, exemplifying this combination of spaces under one well-designed roof
* Intactness: Intact front elevation and some interiors, and unusually intact studio, complete with external and internal entrances, north facing light, panelled fittings and fireplace
* Historic interest: first complete house by Falkner, for WH Allen, a commission which reflects the growing influence of the craft-based Art Schools across the country. Despite his youth, the house was exhibited and published at the time.

This text is from the original listing, and may not necessarily reflect the current setting of the building.

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