The Grove/Hawkwood College Salmons Spring Mill & Brewery All Saints Church New Mills The Birches The Granges All Saints Centre Park Gardens Uplands House Old Police Station Little & Slad Mills Hawthorn Cottage
The Birches by kind permission of Howard Beard
What: Historic house
Where: GL5 1RP  On Folly Lane
Then: 17th and 18th century house and grounds
Now: Divided into flats with modern housing surrounding it.

In 1800 The Birches was owned by Benjamin Cooke, one of whose daughters married the Rev. John Williams. He eventually became the owner of The Birches and the Little Mill below it, often called Birches or Burches Mill. He lived in The Birches for a short time in the 1830s, and thereafter it was briefly a boys’ boarding school.

By the 1860s it had been split into two, The Birches and Upper Birches (sometimes called Melrose Cottage), and was the home of the Winterbotham family of solicitors for many years. John Sutton, who sold Uplands House land to form the Uplands estate, lived in part of the house in the 1860s.

In the very early 20th century, C.P. Allen (MP for Stroud) lived there and Upper Birches was the home of E. Northam Witchell, who was clerk of the Urban District Council from 1902 to 1929.

In 1922, it became the Cotswold School, a private academy for boys and girls run by Ethel and Elsie Brinkworth, specialising in music, which closed in 1960. The house and gardens were then sold for property development.

Revised 2018 EMW

From January 2016, this website is managed by Stroud Local History Society