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December 2023

As another year draws to a close and we are all rushing to prepare for Christmas, there’s not much time to write a long piece this month. I just wanted to show this model, completed last month, of a magnificent house in Harrogate

The first villas appeared in the area throughout the 1850s and 60s, and the vast majority of the building was by developers Liversidge, Leak, Husband and Bown. The house was designed and built by Henry Edward Bown. He came from an artisanal background, and his father was a jeweller and china dealer. As a young man Bown trained under the Harrogate architect Richard Dyson. After briefly working as an assistant to William Hill of Park Square, he set up his own practice in 1868 at Beulah House in Chapel Street. Bown then went into partnership with his brother Arthur. When Henry died of tuberculosis in 1881, Arthur continued the business until 1911. The Bowns also designed many of the Harrogate’s villas on the West Park and Victoria Park Estates, together with the Jubilee Memorial and Queen’s Park Lodge. 

The building is a fine example of Harrogate’s grand style. Much like the other famous spa town of Bath, Harrogate is predominantly constructed in stone, and both have an overwhelming sense of grandeur which in part is due to their respective development taking place over relatively short periods of time. This gives each town a certain uniformity. For Bath the Georgian age provided the architectural style, whereas for Harrogate it was the mid-Victorian era which saw a massive boom in construction. Bath’s local stone is a creamy limestone; the builders of Harrogate used mainly sandstone from the surrounding area, and the various millstone grits.

Any Building Anywhere

Please feel free to get in touch to make an appointment. Remember that it is possible to create models of any type of building, from town house to shop or country house. Without a site visit this makes the ultimate in surprise gifts! This service is not limited to the UK and commissions are welcome from anywhere in the world! Please email me a single photo of your house and I will provide you with an estimate, or give me a call for more information. The usual cost of a house portrait model in a box frame starts at around £2,500+vat.   (more details about ‘small projects’ here).