Tuesday, 12 November 2013

Arthur Romney Green's table at Charterhouse

Following up on a reference in Arthur Romney Green's biography to a refectory table at Charterhouse School, down the road from Haslemere in Godalming, I have heard back from them, and it is not good news.  

Susan Elkin reported that Romney Green did some work for Charterhouse "including the big oak refectory table for Hodgsonites House, a photograph of which he used for advertizing purposes"  (Elkin, Susan, (Life to the LeesCromwell Press, 1998).  I thought that this work was probably made for Charterhouse following the Master of Charterhouse, Gerald Davies', interest in arts and crafts, and the sale of his peasant arts collection to the Peasant Arts Guild in 1908.   Sadly I have not found the advert that is being referred to.
Arthur Romney Green oak refectory table
with octagonal leg detailing
for sale at antiques-atlas
Charterhouse's archivist has told me "We have not been able to identify Green’s big oak refectory table in Hodgonsites House.  Although all the Houses still have long refectory tables in their dining halls (as you will be able to see if you just look through the windows of the Central Dining Rooms on the left as you drive into Charterhouse) I am not aware of any particularly decorative Arts and Crafts tables and the Housemaster of Hodgsonites tells me that there is nothing of that nature in the boarding house. 

"The boarding Houses were still run as private enterprises by each Housemaster in the Edwardian era, so the table would presumably have been commissioned by T E Page, a distinguished Classics teacher, who taught at Charterhouse from 1875 to 1910 and was Housemaster of Hodgsonites between 1881 and 1910.  The original Hodgsonites boarding house was demolished in the 1970s, together with six other Houses, and they were relocated in new buildings, so it is possible that the table was lost at that point. "

Interestingly, there is an Arthur Romney Green "oak refectory dining table" currently for sale on antiques-atlas: "A Cotswold School oak refectory dining table designed and made by Arthur Romney Green c.1920. Signed "ARG". Octagonal legs with scalloped decoration. Pegged construction throughout."  I wonder if the refectory table at Charterhouse looked like this.  The table legs have a very similar design to the altar chair in St Christopher's Church, Haslemere which my photographs do not do justice to.

Arthur Romney Green altar chair,
with octagonal leg detailing
St Christopher's Church, Haslemere

I have also found this photograph of Standen, the National Trust Arts and Crafts property, which says that the table at the bottom of the staircase is by Arthur Romney Green, the legs here do look like they have similar octagonal shaping.  As I discovered from looking at previous Arthur Romney Green items for sale in another post, Arthur Grogan, the curator of Standen collected Arthur Romney Green works.

Arthur Romney Green oval table at Standen, National Trust house
from ViewPictures 

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