Aerial View of Planters
Set amongst a picturesque garden
of 2.5acres, Planters is an authentic Ceylonese
In 1897, Charles Thomas Scowen a local Bures man retired at the
age of 45yrs after working In Ceylon.
Although the local Census describes him as a Tea Planter, his main
occupation was photography.
Charles born 1852 in Middlesex
Charles Scowen arrived in Ceylon around 1873 and was initially an
assistant to R. Edley, the Commission Agent in Kandy before opening
a photographic studio around 1876.
By 1885 his photography firm had studios in Colombo and Kandy.
In the early 1890s the firm was being run by Mortimer Scowen, brother
By about 1894 the firms stock of negatives had been acquired
by the Colombo Apothecaries Co Ltd.
death registered in Sudbury 1935, but no record of him being at
After retiring possibly in the early
1890`s, Charles then spent the next 4 years constructing Planters
using authentic materials.
The house is of a pitch pine timber framed construction, clad painted
in heavy duty corrugated iron.
The property features a covered verandah on the ground floor and
a loggia balcony on the first floor.
Charles occupied the property until
his death in 1948.
This London Gazette Nov 1948 entry
Charles Thomas Scowen, died
24th November 1948. Charles was a respected Sri Lanka photographer
Address given as "Hill House" St Edmunds Lane, Bures.
As you can see, the property was
then known as Hill House and not Planters as we know it today.
Charles probate record, also confirmed that his address was Hill
View, St Edmunds Lane.
After is death the property was left
to his executors, Agnes Diggins and Mabel Wilson were both housekeepers
Now did Agnes or Mabel rename the house - that question to date