|HCC Site ID:||1179||Parish:||Hedge End|
|Designations:||Local gap||Area:||7 ha|
|Access:||No Public Access||Ownership:||Four separate private residences|
Location and Site
Situated on Holmesland Lane on the western edge of Botley in the upper Hamble Valley.
The Botley Tithe map and Apportionment of 1830-40 describe Holmesland as a house with buildings,yards and garden occupying 4 acres, owned and occupied by James Warner who also owned much of the surrounding arable, pasture and wooded land. William Cobbett had a friend named James Warner but it is not clear whether this was the same man, who apparently lived at Steeple Court. The Old Series map of Hampshire (1855) shows Holmesland Farm to the north west of Botley village. The OS 25″ 1st ed map (1869) indicates a property more suited to a gentleman than a farmer; a house with ornamental grounds of c 8.67 ha, a walled kitchen garden, orchard, a variety of mixed planting of trees in the garden and ornamental parkland. A stream, Woodhouse Gully, borders the western edge of the parkland and eventually flows into the river Hamble to the south-east of Botley. By 1894 Admiral Charles Rowley, ADC to Queen Victoria and second in command of the Channel Fleet was in residence (Hampshire Advertiser 1894). He remained there until his death in 1919 (Times On-line 1920). The 2nd ed OS map (1896) shows fewer trees in the grounds which now have a small lake possibly spring-fed to the south of the house. There also appear to be five pumps shown and three glasshouses outside the walled garden. A fine line of trees (limes) has been planted on the eastern side of Holmesland Lane and a shelterbelt of trees on the western side of the lane as far as the house. The OS 3rd ed (1909) and the 4th ed (1940) show little change. By 1968 Lt Com. and Mrs. Ralph Oliphant are in residence (Times on-line 1968) and in the late 1970s the Holmesland estate was built to the east of Holmesland lane (Stokes, 2007, 17). The Oliphants also owned the land on which the Holmesland estate was built and in the mid-1970s Ralph Oliphant converted the old milking shed into a house, naming it Holmesland Farm, to which he moved in the mid-1970s. He then sold Holmesland in 1976 and separately sold the derelict old Coach House to the current owners who gradually restored it (2012). (Personal communication).
There are now four separate residences – Holmesland, The Old Coach House, Holmesland Farm and Holmesland Cottage. The walled garden is intact and carefully maintained with restoration along part of the western wall, where a door leads through to a strip of woodland beyond. The walled garden is laid to lawn with border around the sides. About five very old espaliered apple trees and two pear trees remain. as well as a mature fig along a wall. The derelict upper glasshouse was taken down and only the brick base remains. The other two glasshouses not on the property of the current owners, no longer exist. The pond (lake) has been dredged and is still in use. The limes remain to the east of Holmesland Lane as does the shelter belt of trees on the western side of the lane.
A late 18th/ early 19th century farm became a gentleman’s residence with ornamental grounds and walled garden. 2012, four separate residences with lawn, shrubs, small lake with lime avenue and shelter belt trees to the east.
Partial HGT Research: October 2012