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Springfield House history

Sian ferch Rhianneth
Chief of the Village of Strongoak

Springfield House does not date back to the Society’s period, though I have yet to trace its early history. Judging from street plans, it seems likely that it was built after the Great Fire of 1807, which destroyed 40 wooden buildings in the High Street.

In 1851 we know it was owned by “Thomas Triphook, Landed Proprietor”. By the 1860s ownership had passed to “Maria Triphook, Fundholder” – perhaps the widow of Thomas?

In the 1870s the owner was Charlotte Aldham, who seems to have been the postmistress, but the house and premises were occupied by “A. Collins”.

In 1883 it was bought by the Revd. John Osbourne, curate of the parish and former Master of Alleyne’s Grammar School: he left Alleyne’s, taking many of the staff and pupils with him, and founded the Grange School almost next door, just across the road from Springfield House. (The Grange is no longer a school, but Alleyne’s most definitely is.)

In 1904 the owner was a Mrs Collinson, and the building is first refered to by name: “Springfields”. In 1914 we are given her first name (Mary), and the building has become “Springfield House”.

At some point between then and 1937 it was bought by Jeremiah Inns, a self-made millionaire. He left it to the town in his will in 1945, with the intention that it should become a cottage hospital. The creation of the NHS defeated this objective. In 1955 it is listed as a private house, and it is now the Old Stevenage Community Association premises. It also houses the Denington Art Gallery upstairs.


Most recent revision March 2000