Arnold Bidlake Mitchell

Extract from: Arnold Mitchell (1863–1944): ‘Fecundity’ and ‘Versatility’ in an Early Twentieth-Century Architect, by Clare Sherriff. Published online by Cambridge University Press: 11 April 2016:

“The architectural historian Roderick Gradidge, referring to the 1900s, wrote that ‘in architecture there have never been such opportunities for younger men as there were at the turn of the century’. Arnold Mitchell is an architect typical of those who took advantage of such opportunities, a man (women were yet to have the chance) who saw the economic and aesthetic potential for new architecture, both nationally and internationally. Understanding the nature of architectural practice should not be reliant solely upon knowledge of the stellar architects of any given period. It depends upon integrating others, one or two rungs down the ladder but who achieved success in their own sphere, into the corpus examined, in order to achieve a fuller understanding of the profession.”

From the Dictionary of Scottish Architects:

“Arnold Bidlake Mitchell was born in 1863 and was articled to Robert Stark Wilkinson from 1880 to 1883. He subsequently worked as assistant to Ernest George & Peto and to Frank Thomas Baggallay, was Clerk of Works at St Luke, Bermondsey for Joseph Gale in 1884, and assisted Thomas Jerram Bailey at the London Schoool Board in 1885. He studied at the RA Schools in 1884.

In 1886 he commenced independent practice. He worked in partnership with Alfred Morris Butler for several years from 1894.”

Mitchell retired to Lyme Regis. He died on 2 or 3 November 1944. His son Edward Arnold Mitchell followed him into the architectural profession.


“Gifted English Arts-and-Crafts architect. He began practice in 1886, specializing in parish-halls, houses, and schools. His best works include St Felix School, Southwold, Suffolk (1902), the School of Agriculture, Cambridge (1909–10), and University College School, Frognal, Hampstead, London (1905–7), the last in a full-blown, robust Wrenaissance style. His domestic works include the fine 1 Meadway Close (1910) and 34 and 36 Temple Fortune Lane (1908), Hampstead Garden Suburb, and the outstanding houses in (see image) Basil Street, Brompton, London (1900s), with long ranges of mullioned and transomed windows and tall gables (mutilated in the 1939–45 war).”

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