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Photographer: John C. Trotter

Liberal Club

Gazetteer No. G0028

Date 1897

Address South Street Farnham, Surrey GU9 7RP England


Built on a mortgage provided by Arthur Chapman, of Crooksbury and Chairman of the Farnham Liberals, the Liberal Club was Lutyens’s first complete Georgian building, fitting in very much with the character of the town. It is of thin red bricks with mullion windows and leaded lights. (Amery et al., 1981, cat no.87)

SOUTH STREET was set out in 1869 as New Road, connecting The Borough to the railway station via a bridge across the Wey. By 1900 it had become the civic street of the town, with public buildings and institutions as well as Nonconformist churches. Too much traffic spoils it now. Heading N, first on the E side are the TOWN COUNCIL OFFICES and the METHODIST CHURCH. Next is the badly neglected former LIBERAL CLUB, notable only for the name of its architect: Lutyens, who must have received the commission via Arthur Chapman, chairman of the local party and his client at Crooksbury. It has a front composed of cross-windows in a field of the dark red and very thin bricks laid in stretcher bond, with alternating triangular- and segmental-moulded brick courses making pediments over the first-floor windows. Interesting, because it was designed in 1894, and so is an early case of Lutyens using a ‘Queen Anne’ effect’ when his houses were still Surrey vernacular. (O’Brien et al., 2022, p.334)


Amery, C., Richardson, M. and Stamp, G. (1981) Lutyens, the Work of the English Architect Sir Edwin Lutyens (1869-1944): Hayward Gallery London, 18 November 1981-31 January 1982. London: Arts Council of Great Britain.

O’Brien, C., Nairn, I. and Cherry, B. (2022) Surrey. Pevsner Architectural Guides: Buildings of England. New Haven: Yale University Press.

Also Cited In

Nairn, I., Pevsner, N. (1971) Surrey (Pevsner Architectural Guides: Buildings of England). 2nd edn. Yale University Press.

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