Holmwood: The Dutch House, Horsham Road

The Dutch House, Horsham Road, South Holmwood. Photograph: Kathy Atherton

The Dutch House, Horsham Road, South Holmwood
Photograph: Kathy Atherton

The Dutch House is situated on the Horsham Road, a little to the north of South Holmwood, opposite Mill Road.

It was built by Wildman Cattley (who built much property in Holmwood) to a design by Edwin Lutyens. The house is laid out in a curious Y-shape, all rooms emanating from a central hallway.

In 1901 the house became the country home of the campaigning lawyer and journalist Frederick Pethick Lawrence and his social campaigner wife, Emmeline. The couple kept a large upstairs room at the house available for the use of a club for working class London girls.

She soon afterwards became treasurer of the Womens Social and Political Union and the Pankhursts, Keir Hardie and James Ramsay Macdonald were all visitors to the house, which the Pethick Lawrences renamed the Mascot during their residence.

Much suffragette activity was planned at the Mascot. Learn more about pro and anti-suffrage activity in Surrey and Surrey Heritage’s March of the Women Suffrage project.

The couple’s suffragette activities lead to a prosecution for conspiracy in 1912 and an action by the government to recover costs from the couple by means of a sale of the contents of their home. Six weeks of rallies took part in Holmwood, Dorking and the surrounding villages, culminating in an auction at the Mascot to which thousands turned up. Much of the couples property was bought by friends and supporters and returned to them. A plaque in the hallway commemorates that event, reading: O liberty, thy choicest treasure 31st October 1912.

Dorking Museum in partnership with Royal Holloway College and the ‘Citizens’ 800 project, have produced a video, Suffragettes in the Surrey Hills: The Pethick Lawrences, which looks at the story of the Pethick Lawrences, leaders with the Pankhursts of the Women’s Social and Political Union (WSPU). Watch the video on YouTube

The Pethick Lawrences left the Mascot in 1921 and it reverted to its original name.

A Grade II* building, the roofline has been altered with the addition of dormer windows in the top floor.

13 thoughts on “Holmwood: The Dutch House, Horsham Road”

  1. diane atkinson says:

    Dear Surrey’s Past

    I am writing about the suffragettes and would like to see inside the house that used to be called ‘The Mascot’ at Holmwood, near Dorking.
    Is it open to the public? If not please could you let me have the owner’s contact detaails.
    Many thanks
    Diane Atkinson

    1. Michael reed says:

      hi Diane your surname rings a bell for me,I lived at Nelson cottage mill road in 1961 went to southolmwood primary school and think one of your relatives also attended,I know the name,I know the old school people of the village,michael reed.

      1. Michael Kawoh says:


        My name is Michael Kawoh. I went to nelson cottage with my brother and sister from ‘ 61. I remember you and your brother Steven. I’ve just received a reply from London metropolitan archive and Surrey county council. I

        1. Nancy Sutherland-Brown says:

          Hey, are you the Michael William Kawoh who was at HMS Caledonia in 1971?

  2. Atholl Beattie says:

    The Dutch House is mentioned in Christopher Martin -Jenkins autobiography CMJ A Cricketing Life. His father bought the house in 1961 from Sir H P Hamilton for £7500 leaving it in 1964. He mention it was a billet for the Canadian Army during the war and its links to the suffragette history

  3. john francis says:

    My nan lived close to the house at holly and laural cottages .she was born in the village .and met the pankhursts

    1. Michael reed says:

      hi john I know you I started school at southolmwood primary,
      In 1961 aged 10,you might remember the kids home Nelson cottage in mill road,how could I forget the holly and laurel,do you remember the well,Michael reed.

      1. John says:

        My family lived at holly and laurel cottages

    2. Christine Barnes says:

      Hello John
      Your mention of the Holly and Laurel Cottages has resonated with me as my Great Grandfather James Barnes and his wife Elizabeth lived there according to the 1891 Census. When Elizabeth died in 1895 of diphtheria he married her sister Maria, always known as Henrietta. I have been trying to find any information of these cottages as I believe they were demolished at some point. Do you have any knowledge of them? I lived in South Holmwood for a while at 1 Ashleigh Cottages when my family resided with my Grandmother, Susan Barnes in the 1960s and am trying to compile some family history.

  4. paul says:

    I own a 1937 Austin 7 ruby which once lived at this address. Currently under full restoration.reg. No. DGJ 471

    1. Michael reed says:

      hi Paul lovely motor,I lived opposite where your on about in mill road ivied in the kids home from 1961,I’m interested in a ford model C deluxe British made if you hear of one any condition mate. Michael reed

  5. Philp says:

    The Penthick-Lawrences have a role in the great graphic novel by Bryan and Mary Talbot and Karen Charlesworth [Sally Heathcote: Suffragette].

  6. John Francis says:

    My family are a holmwood family and have common law rights in holmwood my Nan’s family i can remember dug out four ways pond and had common law rights to fish there I remember skating there with my uncle. Alec francis

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