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Debenham, Sir Ernest Ridley

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 Debenham, Sir Ernest Ridley

Image © Department of History of Art, University of Glasgow
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Sir Ernest Ridley Debenham (1865-1952), 1st Baronet (created 1931), Chairman of the London department store Debenham and Freebody, commissioned in 1905 The Debenham House in Addison Road, Holland Park, by Halsey Ricardo. He became a member of the Oriental Ceramic Society, elected in 1928-29. In the 1930s and 1940s he was active in trying to bring scientific methods and factory-style efficiency to agriculture in his Bladen Valley, Dorset estate, where he lived at Moor Lane House, Briantspuddle, Dorchester. Briantspuddle Dairy, set up in 1914 as a model farm, was at the centre of a programme of intensive pig, poultry and dairy farming. Debenham commissioned new cottages for the estate in the arts and crafts style, with thatched roofs.

Published sources
Sotheby & Co., 22 November 1946, ‘Catalogue of fine early Chinese ceramics, sculpture and works of art, English furniture and clocks, antique Oriental rugs and carpets, including the property of Sir Ernest Debenham, Bt.’
‘Who Was Who’ volume 5, 1951-60, 1961, p.291

Who:
Collector, Sir Ernest Debenham

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