History of 7 Gwydir Street

See History of Gwydir Street and Buildings in Gwydir Street.

Frederick Dean, printer, lived in 7 Gwydir St in 1904 (see Spalding's Directory).

Mrs Dean lived in 7 Gwydir St in 1913 (see Spalding's Directory).

This record was made by the present owner of 7 Gwydir St in 1994.

This information has come from the house deeds and other research.

19 December 1867: The Rev Richard John Geldart, sold land to Joseph Sturton, a wholesale chemist of Fitzroy Street.

10 October 1868: A conveyancerecords the sale to William John Bowyer surveyor, for the sum of £202: "A piece of land on the West side of Gwydir Street with a frontage 96ft and depth 89ft recently purchased of the Rev Richard John Geldart; And a further part adjoining Cambridge Cemetery in depth (N side) 54ft, (S side) 86ft and length (E side) 96 ft, (W side) 102ft."

5 December 1876: William Bowyer sold to Charles Wright, Builder, for £315 a plot in depth (N side) 143 ft, (S side) 175 ft, and in length (on Gwydir St) 116ft, (at the Cemetery) 102ft. This appears to be the grounds of the 6 houses now nos 5-15 - it is slightly longer on its Gwydir St frontage than the plot sold in 1868.

11 January 1877: Charles Wright sold to Joseph Turner Bailey, Gentleman for £168 a frontage of 40ft and depth (N side) 143ft, (S side) 156ft, bounded on the North by the property of Bennett, with heriditaments. - i.e. the 3 houses now nos 5, 7 and 9. The houses must have been built shortly before, or possibly after, this sale.

It appears from the 1878 street directory that Gwydir Street was originally continuously numbered, so No.7 was briefly called No.4. The present odds-and-evens numbering system was in use by the time of the 1881 census.

The houses were let for rent and No.7 had several tenants in its early years. The following are known to have lived here:

From then on, the house was occupied by one or more of the Dean family right up to 1978.

26 April 1917: Joseph Bailey died and left a life interest in the properties to his friend Stephen Thompson of the Earl of Beaconsfield Beerhouse, and to pass upon his death to the Governors of Addenbrookes Hospital.

Changes in Property Law carried through Parliament meant that the entail to the Governors of Addenbrookes Hospital lapsed, and Stephen Thompson became the owner 'in fee simple' - that is, with no conditions attached.

25 February 1948: Stephen Thompson sold No.7 to Arthur Octavius Dean and his sisters Cecilia and Lily, who had previously been renting the property from him. The price was £350.

5 September 1978: Cecilia Dean (whose brother and sister had by then died) sold No.7 to present owners for the sum of £10,000.

Mary Naylor emailed me in 2013:

My Great Uncle Stephen Thompson did inherit the properties left to him by Joseph Bailey but I have it confirmed by Hilary Ritchie, the Archivist at Addenbrooke's, that when he sold the properties the money did go to the hospital. At the time of his death Joseph T Bailey owned 46 houses in Gwydir St, Kingston St, Mill Rd, Cavendish Rd and Devonshire Rd. JTB was a bit of a character and although very rich he once took 6 pence from a toff to mind a car outside the London motor show and then went in and bought a brand new car for cash! This is a story my dad told me so have no verification.

See a memory in number 3.

Click here for the house deeds of 7 Gwydir St.

When we moved in (1979), we found this splendid bath. We did repaint it.

Bathroom Bathroom

These were found at different times in our garden, while digging, or in our shed.

garden finds garden finds garden finds garden finds garden finds garden finds garden finds garden finds shed find

The 1891 census said that George Charles Wilson was head of household, 24, postman. The first below was found in our shed, and the buttons were found in the garden.

garden finds shed find

See Artefacts for a complete list.

From Capturing Cambridge:


1867: Rev Richard John Geldart sold land to Joseph Sturton, wholesale chemist of Fitzroy Street
1868: Land sold to William John Bowyer, surveyor, for £202
1876: William Bowyer sold land to Charles Wright, builder for £315. This may be the plot for the 6 houses nos 5-15.
1877: Charles Wright sold to Joseph Turner Bailey for £168; this would have been the plot for nos 5, 7 and 9. At this time the houses were still numbered consecutively and this would have been number (4).

Henry Leeder, head, 60, tailor, b Cambridge
Ann, 64, wife, 64, tailoress, b Cambridge
Emily A, 35, tailoress, b Cambridge

1884: George Moon, carpenter

George Charles Wilson, head, 24, postman, b London
Eliza, wife, 21, b Cambridge
George Henry, son [?], 17, b Cambridge
Arthur, son, 10 days, b Cambridge

Frederick W Dean, 43, printers machine minder, b Cambridge
Charles F, 17, general smith, b Cambridge
Arthur O, 15, errand boy, b Cambridge
May, tailoress
Corenda, 11, b Cambridge
Cecilia, 7, b Cambridge

Corenda Dean, 52, widow, private means, b Swaffham
May, 23, domestic cook, b Cambridge
Violet, 13, b Cambridge
Daisy, 12, b Cambridge
Lily, 8, b Cambridge

Mrs Dean

1917: Joseph Bailey died and left a life interest in the house to Stephen Thompson of the earl of Beaconsfield Beerhouse. On his death the house would pass to the Governors of Addenbrookes Hospital, but after a change in the law in 1925, Thompson was able to be owner outright with no conditions.

1948: Stephen Thompson sold property to Arthur Octavius Dean and his sister Cecilia and Lily for £350.

Misses C & L Dean

Miss C Dean
1978: Cecilia Dean sold property for £10,000

Stephen Thomas (see 1917 above) as a boy in the backyard of the Beaconsfield around 1915 with resident dogs and Bob the parrot and his uncle Stephen Thomas Senior (Stiv), who inherited the properties from John Bailey.

Stephen Thomas

Main index - Buildings and houses in Gwydir Street.