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You are here: CollectionsOnline  /  [6] Design for the principal western front of St John’s, Bethnal Green, London, 1826-7


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image SM 47/5/63

Reference number

SM 47/5/63


[6] Design for the principal western front of St John’s, Bethnal Green, London, 1826-7


Elevation of the west front of the church in many respects similar to SM 47/5/57 except the end bay windows are a transomed and latticed type with a square window at nave level and large round-topped window at gallery level. The plan on the left is slightly altered to show the corner caps on the dome, and the elevation of the alternative truncated second tier and dome of the tower on the right shows the caps with pinecone finials emanating from the top of the first tier across the bottom


bar scale of 1inch to 5 feet

Signed and dated

  • 1826-7

Medium and dimensions

Pencil, pen, wash, coloured washes of olive green, Payne’s grey, pink, stone and yellow, pricked for transfer, on wove paper (731 x 526)


Probably Soane Office, draughtsman




The date of 1826-7 is surmised by the change in windows from the earlier similar elevation (SM 47/5/57). The Commission requested that Soane change the window designs in 1826, which he did by copying those used at his earlier St Peter's Church, Walworth with a square bottom, transom in between and a large round-topped window for the gallery level. This was executed for an additional cost of £270.


Carr, 1976, Vol. II, p. 428; Vol III, p. 888 fig. 263



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Sir John Soane's collection includes some 30,000 architectural, design and topographical drawings which is a very important resource for scholars worldwide. His was the first architect’s collection to attempt to preserve the best in design for the architectural profession in the future, and it did so by assembling as exemplars surviving drawings by great Renaissance masters and by the leading architects in Britain in the 17th and 18th centuries and his near contemporaries such as Sir William Chambers, Robert Adam and George Dance the Younger. These drawings sit side by side with 9,000 drawings in Soane’s own hand or those of the pupils in his office, covering his early work as a student, his time in Italy and the drawings produced in the course of his architectural practice from 1780 until the 1830s.

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