The Terrace on Victoria Parade at Cowes


This elegant building once stood on the Parade (also called Victoria Parade) in Cowes. Often called the New Terrace on postcards, it appears to have consisted of at least 7 terraced houses, from at least the 1880s until the 1920s.


In 1924, the two houses on the left numbers 6 & 7 housed a boarding school, Solent House Boarding and Day School, run by Margaret H Caws and her sister Cecil. The school was established sometime after 1911, and by 1937, had moved to a large detached house, Cambridge House by Trinity Church in Queen’s Road. Margaret (1887-) and Cecil (1888-) were the daughters of Samuel Dawson Caws, a draper who also ran the Pier View Hotel in Cowes Town. Their step mother was Marion Helena (nee Ratsey), a school governess and daughter of Eliza Ratsey, principal of another ladies school in Cowes. Margaret was a Registered Teacher and Cecil was the house mistress of the Solent House School, which offered, ‘large and lofty classrooms with balconies facing the sea’. There was a large sheltered garden where classes were held during the summer terms. Individual attention was given to each pupil, and the school offered, ‘excellent diet, open-air life, modern education’.


Number 5 was the home of James Wasdale Hudson, a physician & surgeon.

Numbers 3 & 4 were the home of John B Aubrey.


On the right side of the terrace, houses number 1 & 2 were combined into the clubhouse for the Royal London Yacht Club. Established as the London Yacht Club on the Thames in 1845, the club moved to Cowes in 1882 and leased the two houses. This section of the Terrace has survived and continues to be the RLYC Clubhouse today.


By the 1930s, the Terrace, except numbers 1 & 2, the Royal London Yacht Club, were demolished. They were replaced by Osborne Court, a large Art Deco block of flats which was offered for rental in the late 1930s and featured Club facilities including a cocktail bar and gymnasium.


Please read more about the history of Cowes buildings with more illustrations on our page Cowes History.

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