Holmbury St Mary

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Holmbury St. Mary
Holmbury St Mary.jpg
Holmbury St. Mary
Holmbury St. Mary is located in Surrey
Holmbury St. Mary
Holmbury St. Mary
Holmbury St. Mary shown within Surrey
OS grid reference TQ112441
Civil parish
Shire county
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town DORKING
Postcode district RH5
Dialling code 01306
Police Surrey
Fire Surrey
Ambulance South East Coast
EU Parliament South East England
UK Parliament
List of places
51°11′10″N 0°24′36″W / 51.1862°N 0.4101°W / 51.1862; -0.4101Coordinates: 51°11′10″N 0°24′36″W / 51.1862°N 0.4101°W / 51.1862; -0.4101
St. Mary's Church, Holmbury St. Mary

Holmbury St. Mary is a village in Surrey, England, located around 4.5 miles (7.2 km) southwest of Dorking and around 8 miles (13 km) southeast of Guildford. The greater part of the village lies in the borough of Guildford, within Shere civil parish, but a small part to the east lies in the district of Mole Valley, within Abinger civil parish.

Holmbury St. Mary is located within the Hurtwood, which is the largest area of common land in Surrey.[1] Nearby to the south is Holmbury Hill, which at 857 feet (261 m) is the fourth highest point in Surrey. The village is named after both the hill and the large Victorian church at its heart. St. Mary's Church, which overlooks the Village Green, was initiated and paid for in 1879 by George Edmund Street,[2][3] who had built himself a large house in the village between 1873 and 1876, also known as Holmdale.[4] Holmdale later became home to Thomas Sivewright Catto, the Governor of the Bank of England from 1944 to 1949.

From 1947 to 1986, the village was home to the Webb Memorial Trust, a memorial to Beatrice Webb.[5] The Beatrice Webb House was opened by Clement Attlee and served as an important education and discussion facility for the Fabian Society, British Labour Party and trade unions. The Fabian Window, designed by George Bernard Shaw (who Co-Founded the London School of Economics (LSE) with Sidney and Beatrice Webb) hung in the house until it was stolen in 1978. The window was later recovered and is now on loan to the LSE.[6]

Holmbury St. Mary is also home to the UCL Department of Space and Climate Physics Mullard Space Science Laboratory, a Department of University College London and the UK's Largest University-Based Space Science Research Group.[7] The village has three schools: Belmont School,[8] and Hurtwood House,[9] catering for ages 2 to 13 and 16 to 18 respectively. Moon Hall School[10] provides special education to children with dyslexia.

Holmbury St. Mary has two football teams, both of which compete in the Guildford and Woking Alliance. The 1st XI are in the Premier Division and the newly formed 2nd XI are in the 3rd Division.

Holmbury also has two cricket teams. The first XI plays in Division Two of the Surrey Downs League and the second XI plays in the Second Division of the Village Cricket League. The Village Club, The Hollybush Tavern, also has its own cricket side which plays friendly matches.

Holmbury St. Mary has its own annual bonfire and fireworks night in the Glade, made possible by local village men (The Bonfire Boys) who gather wood from the Hurtwood and put on a fireworks show on the weekend following Halloween. Thousands attend and all profits are donated to charities.

Holmbury St. Mary is believed to be the basis for the fictional village of Summer Street in A Room With A View. Its Author, E.M. Forster, was a long-standing resident in the neighbourhood of Abinger Hammer.[11]


  1. ^ Hurtwood Control
  2. ^ Folkes, J. Homery The Victorian Architect and George Edmund Street Transactions of the Worcestershire Archaelogical Society. Third Series Vol 4 1974 p9
  3. ^ St Mary, the Virgin, Holmbury from A Church Near You
  4. ^ "George Edmund Street (1824-1881)". Victorianweb.org. 2007-08-29. Retrieved 2014-05-28. 
  5. ^ [1] Archived August 23, 2007, at the Wayback Machine.
  6. ^ "News - News - News and media - Home". .lse.ac.uk. Retrieved 2014-05-28. 
  7. ^ "UCL Department of Space & Climate Physics - Mullard Space Science Laboratory". Mssl.ucl.ac.uk. Retrieved 2014-05-28. 
  8. ^ "Home". Belmont-school.org. Retrieved 2014-05-28. 
  9. ^ "Hurtwood House, one of the best Public Schools in the country". Hurtwood-house.co.uk. 2011-01-27. Retrieved 2014-05-28. 
  10. ^ "Moon Hall School". Moon Hall School. Retrieved 2014-05-28. 
  11. ^ Keith Parkins. "Surrey Writers". Heureka.clara.net. Retrieved 2014-05-28. 

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