No. 46: Former dentist’s surgery

46 Broad Street


No. 46 Broad Street was the second from the left of the thirteen houses dating from the first half of the seventeenth century that were that were demolished to make way for the New Bodleian Library in the late 1930s.

This house belonged to the city from 1569 to the 1930s, and detailed records remain of the early leases of this large building:

  • 1637: Timothy Carter, gent. (occupied by Elias Archer and Henry East)
  • 1647: Bartholomew Finch, cook
  • 1677: Francis and Abraham Finch (occupied by Richard Hedges, cook)
  • 1691: Abraham Finch cook (occupied by Elizabeth Hedges)
  • 1705: Elizabeth Hedges
  • 1717 and 1731: George Major of the University
  • 1745 and 1759: Mathew Kerry of Wightham, Berks, carpenter
  • 1773: Elizabeth Jones, widow (confirmed by the Survey of Oxford of 1772)
  • 1787, 1801, 1815: Alderman William Fletcher, mercer (Mayor in 1796 and 1809): also owned 47 Broad Street, which he let out
  • 1829: Thomas Robinson, banker, and Joseph E. Parker, bookseller (occupied by Thomas Roberts)
  • 1843: James Hunt, gent.

The 1772 Survey of Oxford gave the measurement of the frontage of this house as 7 yards 0 feet 3 inches. When it was advertised as coming up for auction in Jackson’s Oxford Journal on 4 March 1837 this house was described as follows:

All that excellent DWELLING HOUSE, in Broad-street, Oxford, in the occupation of Mr James Hunt, containing a large entrance hall, two parlours, detached kitchen, with room over, large back kitchen, with laundry over, paved court yard, out-houses, garden, &c.; spacious dining room and bed room, with gallery leading to the room over the kitchen, on the first floor; three principal bed rooms, and two servants’ ditto over the same; excellent cellaring, and other conveniences. These Premises are held by lease under the Corporation of Oxford, for forty years, from Lady-day, 1829.—Out-goings, £1 4s.

At the time of the 1841 census, No. 46 was still occupied by the accountant James Hunt.

In August 1849 the dental surgeon Edmund Bevers moved into this house. He is listed here in the 1851 census as a 39 year-old widower with three tiny children.His wife must have died very recently, because the baby, Harcourt Bevers, was only six weeks old.

Edmund Bevers must have married again and had three more children, because at the time of the 1881 census the head of the house is Mrs Alice Bevers, a widow. As well as her own children, two of the grown-up children by Edmund’s first marriage (Winifred and Harcourt, the latter now a dental surgeon here himself) are living in the house, as well as Mrs Bevers’ elderly sister. The family has two servants.

Occupants of 46 Broad Street listed in directories


James Hunt, Accountant


Bevers family, Dentists and Surgeons

1852–1880: Edmund Bevers, Surgeon dentist

1881–1889: Messrs Bevers, Dental surgeons, and E. A. Bevers, Surgeon

1889–1892: Edmund Augustine Bevers, MRS and 
Harcourt Arthur Bevers, LDSECS, Surgeon dentists

1893–1921: Edmund Augustine Bevers, MRS, Physician and Surgeon-dentist
(with James Benjamin Edgar from 1904)


James Benjamin Edgar, Dental Surgeon


Ernest William Cooke, Dental Surgeon

Demolished with twelve neighbouring houses in 1937
to make room for the New Bodleian Library

See the bound typescript in the Bodleian Library entitled “The Demolished Houses of Broad Street and the Freeborn Family” (1943), attributed to Emily Sarah Freeborn, and the webpage by Alan Simpson which reproduces some of the material in it.

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