© Ms Mary Allison
PALMEIRA MANSIONS, 33 CHURCH ROAD (north side)
HOVE, BRIGHTON AND HOVE, EAST SUSSEX
Ms Mary Allison
10 October 2005
18 July 1978
Date of last amendment:
18 July 1978
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TQ2904NW CHURCH ROAD
579-1/18/32 (North side)
House at end of terrace, now part of language school. 1883-4.
Architect H.J.Lanchester, builder Jabez Reynolds Jnr. Stucco
over brick, roof concealed behind parapet, rendered stacks
with moulded caps.
Plan: end of terrace abutting No.31 (Palmeira Mansions) Church
Road (qv), original entrance on long west return, now blocked,
and entrance via late C20 extension abutting to north.
South front: 4 storeys over basement, full-height canted bay
with 3-window facade, sash windows without glazing bars,
bracketed eaves cornice, moulded strings, second floor central
window with garlanded scroll pediment carried on console
brackets, arch-head windows to first floor with central
pediment and linked entablature, continuous cast-iron balcony
carried on shaped brackets, rusticated ground floor.
Irregular fenestration to west front; flat-roofed porch end
bay right, arch-head opening with panelled door and leaded
fanlight adjoining 3-bay projection with rusticated columns,
entablature continued from porch, first floor conservatory
with cast-iron columns, cresting and stained glass. Apart from
these features on the west front, the facade is identical to
the other end of the terrace.
Interior: a remarkable collection of fittings from the 1880s,
largely intact, including the original lincrusta wall and
ceiling papers, and original light fittings.
Extensive use of coloured marbles on the ground floor; marble
panelled entrance hall and doorcases, heraldic stained glass,
marble floor, curved marble stair with marble balusters and
handrail. Front room ground floor: painted and gilded ceiling
coffered in the Moorish style, marble panelled dado, columns
in corners and doorcase of paired columns with ogee arch to
overdoor, a design echoed in the chimneypiece which is also of
marble; original mahogany door.
First floor landing: Moorish horsehoe arches, ornate painted
and gilded ceiling continued into the conservatory which has
Tiffany-style stained glass, now divided by a partition. Front
room with ornate chimneypiece incorporating mirrored
overmantel, original frieze and lavish pelmet box to portiere.
Conference room with ornate chimneypiece, Venetian glass
overmantel with glass columns and engraved glass, ornate
doorcase. Other chimneypieces survive including a wooden one
painted white in style loosely associated with Robert Adam.
Third floor: former ballroom (now video library) patterned
parquet floor, fine mahogany carved door, plasterwork frieze
with roundels, notable Doulton ceramic chimneypiece. Partition
separating inner room, perhaps used as a stage, with
rococo-style wood and plaster chimneypiece incorporating
mirror overmantel, lustreware hearth tiles of a design by
Little is known of the original owner of the house, who is
believed to have been an ink-millionaire, and it is not
certain that Lanchester, the architect of this terrace and
many other properties in Hove, was actually responsible for
the interior. The house first appears in the street
directories for 1886 as occupied by R.Gillespie Esq., and 3
years later by A.W.Mason. An outstanding collection of