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Description: 36 and 38, Reed Pond Walk
Date Listed: 14 September 1979
English Heritage Building ID: 201641
OS Grid Reference: TQ5209690402
OS Grid Coordinates: 552096, 190402
Latitude/Longitude: 51.5919, 0.1943
REED POND WALK
Nos 36 and 38
TQ 5290/5390 3/4
A pair of 'cottages' linked by a narrow single-storey storage area which form a picturesque composition. 1910-1911, by the notable Arts and Crafts architect, M. H. Baillie Scott. They are of one and a half storeys with the upper floor within the roof space, clad in roughcast rendered brick, with clay plain tile roofs. No 36 is painted a pinkish yellow and No 38 is in cream.
EXTERIOR: Their façades are asymmetrical. The principal (north) facade of No 36 has an offset projecting staircase tower with two casement windows, a low swept roof with ridge stack to the left, beneath which are two single-light casement windows, and a small door to the fuel store. To the right of the tower is the entrance, a ground floor two-light casement window and large projecting chimney stack to the right. The render to the chimney has been removed. Pargetting above the entrance and adjacent window depicts hops or grapes. A tiled sundial by Baillie Scott (listed grade II) stands in front of the house, along with some of the original paving. At the rear (south), the roof again slopes low over a verandah with modern doors, with a five-light casement window, canted-bay window and two-light casement to the right. The two dormer windows have new casements. The bay window and flat topped dormers are capped with clay tiles. A modern lean-to structure has been added to the west of the building. The lean-to storage area to the east has a brick floor. The arrangement of the main (north) façade of No 38 is similar, except that there is a two-storey projecting gable in place of the window, pargetting, and external chimney stack.
INTERIOR: The plan form of No 36 is typical of the configuration of Baillie Scott houses, with generic elements combined in such a way as to fit a smaller dwelling. The living range, comprising the living and dining rooms, is along the south front of the house, looking onto the garden through the verandah (although the access door has been blocked up), the five-light casement window with built in seat, and the canted bay window to the dining area. The service spaces are predominantly to the north, including the entrance hall, staircase, pantry, fuel store, WC and scullery. The kitchen is to the south, and is continuous with the scullery. The ground floor internal walls are painted brick. The doors are of thick elm planks, with the doors and windows having bespoke ironmongery. The entrance hall has a stone flag floor. The wooden staircase has turned balusters and moulded newel finials. The living and dining rooms have elm floors and oak ceiling beams, with panelled folding doors between the two rooms. The living room has an inglenook fireplace, with built in elm settle and shelves and an oak bressumer with mantle. The decorative cast-iron fire grate has been removed. The dining room has a fireplace with wooden mantle and tiled opening, and a small serving hatch to the kitchen. The kitchen has oak ceiling beams, a clay tile floor and built in dresser and table which appear to be part of the original scheme. There is an opening for a range/boiler with a mantle above. The ceramic sink in the scullery may also be original. The entrance from the hall to the kitchen/scullery appears to have been moved, with fitted cupboards inserted in front of the original entrance to the right of the range/boiler opening.
The first floor is within the attic space and comprises three bedrooms, a bathroom and linen cupboard, with elm floors and plank doors and several fitted cupboards. There were originally four bedrooms and a separate WC, but the two west end bedrooms have been merged, as have the bathroom and WC. Plans suggest that the fireplaces in the central and east bedroom have been blocked-in. The fire surround to the west bedroom has been replaced, but the decorative grate remains. Most of the window casements appear to have been replaced, with some of the original ironmongery reattached. No 38 was a more expensive 'Class I' dwelling, and consequently had a parlour to the north on the ground floor, and a fifth bedroom. The interior was not inspected, but plans show a similar arrangement, with the additional rooms within the projecting gable.
HISTORY: The houses were the work of the notable Arts and Crafts architect, M H Baillie Scott, whose best known work is 'Blackwell', Windermere (Grade I). They were among the 159 houses and cottages built for the 1911 'House and Cottage Exhibition' at Gidea Park, a showpiece garden suburb. No 38 was built as a 'Class I' type at a cost of £500, and No. 36 as a 'Class II' type at £375. The builders were W H Maxey and Son. 35 dwellings were also built at Gidea Park for the 1934 'Modern Homes Exhibition'. Eminent figures were involved in the design of houses in both competitions, including Barry Parker and Raymond Unwin, and W. Curtis Green. A number of the 1911 properties are listed Grade II. The interiors of No 36 and 38 Reed Pond Walk originally contained wall hangings and other fabrics specifically made by the Deutsche Werkstatten (an alliance of German artists and craftsman). Baillie Scott had commissions from the Werkstatten at this time, so these may well have been executed to his own design. The majority of the furniture in the cottages was selected from the cottage furniture designed by Heals, with the remainder of the furniture being designed by Baillie Scott. The cottages were published in the catalogue of the Gidea Park exhibition and contemporary periodicals.
SUMMARY OF IMPORTANCE: Nos 36 and 38 Reed Pond Walk, Gidea Park, are of special architectural interest as examples of smaller house designs by the notable Arts and Crafts architect W. H. Baillie Scott. They were built as part of the Gidea Park garden suburb 'House and Cottage Exhibition' 1911, and retain original internal fixtures and fittings.
SOURCES: The Book of the Exhibition of Houses and Cottages: Romford Garden Suburb, Gidea Park (1911) pp. 111-2
B. Cherry, C. O'Brien and N. Pevsner, 'The Buildings of England, London 5: East', p207, Yale University Press (2005)
D. Haigh, 'Baillie Scott: the artistic house', Academy (1995)
J. D. Kornwolf, 'M.H. Baillie Scott and the arts and crafts movement: pioneers of modern design', John Hopkins University Press (1972)
Listing NGR: TQ5209690402
This text is a legacy record and has not been updated since the building was originally listed. Details of the building may have changed in the intervening time. You should not rely on this listing as an accurate description of the building.
Source: English Heritage
Listed building text is © Crown Copyright. Reproduced under licence.