No. 47: Former shop/house

47 Broad Street


No. 47 Broad Street was on the extreme left of of the thirteen houses dating from the first half of the seventeenth century that were demolished to make way for the New Bodleian Library in the late 1930s. Anthony Wood mentions musical evenings at this house from 1656 onwards, when it was occupied by William Ellis, and in the 1920s there was a detached room at the north end of the garden still known as the Music Room


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

  • 1634: Stephen Hawes, cook
  • 1652: Edward Sellwood, cook
  • 1667: Edward Sellwood (occupied by William Ellis)
  • 1683, 1696: John Taylor, limner (occupied by Dr John Luffe in 1683 and Thomas Swift in 1696)
  • 1709: John Taylor, painter (occupied by John Gibbons, victualler)
  • 1723, 1737: Henry Wise, mercer, and John Taylor, gent. (occupied by Daniel Shilfox, tailor, in,1723 and Charles Stephens, cook in 1737)
  • 1751: Charles Stevens, cook
  • 1765: Rev. Samuel Forster, D.LL.
  • 1779: Anne Cleeve, spinster
  • 1793, 1807, 1821: William Fletcher, mercer. He lived at 46 next door and let this house out: it was occupied by Mrs Wickham in 1793 and 1807, and by Mrs Collis in 1821
  • 1835: Joseph Parker, Esq. (occupied by John Parkins [sic], winemerchant)

In 1772 a survey of every house in the city was taken in consequence of the Mileways Act of 1771. No. 47 was then in the occupation of a Dr Forster, and its frontage measured 6 yards 2 feet 4 inches.

At the time of the 1841 census No. 47 was ocupied by John Perkins, a wine merchant; by 1851 he had died and the business was run by his widow, Mrs Elizabeth Perkins (aged 77), who lived over the shop with her daughter Sarah, together with a house servant and a porter.

In the 1861 census it was occupied by Thomas Thame [sic], who is described as a college servant, although directories list him as a wine merchant here.

In 1881 it was occupied by the Professor of Music, William T.H. Allchin, and his wife and four children, looked after by a governess, nursemaid, and general servant.

Occupants of 47 Broad Street listed in directories


John Perkins, Wine Merchant


Thomas Tame, Wine & spirit merchant


William Howell Allchin, Music Bach., Professor of Music


Mrs William Howell Allchin (1884–1929); Miss G. M. Allchin (1928–1929)


Thomas Rayson, FRIBA, Architect
and various other short-term lets

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.

Oxford History Home

Stephanie Jenkins

Broad Street Home