(1-6) 1¼ inches to 10 feet
1 as above, A Design for New Committee Rooms, Library &c adjoining the House of Commons &c, (red pen) The original Drawings of the / Design sent to Mr Beeby / 1 June 1826 , (blue pen) The Blue lines on this / Plan shew the size of / the Present Rooms, (pen) The Black line shews the / Outline of Mr Ley's House, labelled: The House of Commons, Passage leading to Cotton Garden, Peers Staircase, Vault under the House of Lords, Mr Lee Labourer in Trust, Court, Ventilation Room, Water / Closet, Journal / Office / (red pen) containing 476 ftSupra Press (9 times), Space for light and Ventilation, No 1 / Committee Room, Staircase, Lobby, Water / Closet, Door, Committee Clerks / (red pen) Contains 650 ft Supra, Examining Offices / (red pen) Contains 1183 fy Supra, Lobby, Press and dimensions given
2 as above, (blue pen) The Blue lines on the / Plan shew the size / of the present Rooms, labelled: A / Lobby to the / House of / Commons / 6'7½" above / B, The Long Gallery / 6'7½" below A, Court, Part of the Painted Chamber, Part of the House of Commons, Passage of Communication, 4'6" / below the Lobby/ A, Recess (3 times), Presses for containing Stores for the Vote Office, 3.0 above the / Lobby of the / House of Commons, Clerk of the Fees Office, (red pen) contains 920 ftSupra, Committee Room / No 2, Staircase, Lobby, Water / Closet, Press (8 times), Recess, Vote Office, (red pen) contains 650 ft supra, Clerk of the House / of Commons, In the first Plan this / was a Committee Room, Engrossing Office, (red pen) contains 676 ft Supra and dimensions given
3 as above, labelled: Part of the House of Lords, Upper Part of / the Lobby to the / House of Commons, Steps down to the Lobby of the House &c, Clerk of Election / Recognizances, Skylight (twice), Clerks of Committee of Elections, Passage lighted by Skylights, Private Bill Office, Recess (3 times), Presses (3 times), Steps down to the Lobby / of the House of Commons, 8'9" above floor of / Lobby A, Court, Part of the / House of / Commons, Steps down to Solomons Porch, No 3 / Committee Room, No 4 / Committee Room, Librarian, Staircase, Lobby, Library and dimensions given
4 as above, labelled: Roof of Rooms over the Long Gallery &c, No 10 / Committee Room, Court, Ante Room, Skylight, No 9 / Committee Room, No 8 Committee Room, Lobby, Staircase, Ante Room, Skylight, Lobby, Water / Closet (twice), No 5 / Committee Room, No 6 / Committee Room, No 7 Committee Room and dimensions given
5 as above, New Committee Rooms, Library &c / House of Commons
6 as above, New Committee Rooms &c / House of Commons, labelled: Library, Committee Room, Pavement, 11" above Labr in Trust, Level of the Floor of the Labr In Trust Apt, Floor of the Long Gallery, Level of the Floor of the Lobby to the House / of Commons, Mr Leys House is 10" above the / level of the Pavement, (pencil) New Rooms are 8' above the present / Level of Mr Ley's House and some dimensions given
Signed and dated
- (1-4) Lincolns Inn Fields / June 1825 and (Copied May 31st 1826) (5) Lincolns Inn Fields / 27th June 1825 and (Copied 31st May 1826) (6) Lincolns Inn Fields / 28th June 1825 and (Copied 31st May 1826)
Medium and dimensions
(1) Pen, red and blue pens, sepia, pink, blue and yellow washes, pricked for transfer, one old small mend, on wove paper (656 x 465) (2) pen, blue pen, sepia, pink, blue and yellow washes , pricked for transfer on wove paper (660 x 482) (3) pen, sepia, pink, blue and yellow washes, pricked for transfer on wove paper (575 x 460) (4) pen, sepia, pink and blue washes , pricked for transfer on wove paper (572 x 457) (5) pencil, pen and pink wash on thin wove paper with two fold marks (317 x 534) (6) pencil, pen, raw umber and blue washes on stout wove paper with one fold mark (332 x 531)
(1-6) The Day Book records 'About plans of Committee / Rooms for the House of Commons / Burchell / Richardson'. That is, Stephen Burchell, 1807-?, pupil 1823-1828 and Charles James Richardson, (1809-1872, pupil and assistant 1824-1837)
(1) J Whatman 1825 (2) Smith & Allnutt 1823 (3,4) J Whatman Turkey Mill 1824
The location for the four-storey, five-bay new building was between the House of Commons, the Painted Gallery and a court. The half of the building facing the Thames was free-standing while the rear half was flanked by the walls of the House of Commons and the Painted Chamber and included an asymetrical passageway to existing offices. The new accommodation provided ten committee rooms and, on the second floor, a library (measuring 75 feet by 26 feet 9 inches) with librarian's office. The elevation (drawing 5) shows a Tudor Gothic building with an embattled parapet, angle buttresses, the upper cross-windows with labels, the lower ones with arched heads and some tracery and, in the centre an oriel window. The windows and door of the ground floor and first floor (the latter termed 'mezzanine' on drawing 8) are designed so as to give the impression of a single storey. See also drawings 19 and 20 where the same design (together with another for the House of Lords) is given. The choice of style for new buildings at the Palace of Westminster could be contentious. Soane found it so when, in 1824, he was forced to rebuild parts of his new Law Courts in a Gothic style. Presumably he was playing safe here.
'Mr Ley' was John Henry Ley, Clerk of the House of Commons from 1820 (King's Works, VI, pp.526-7).
The alternative or variant designs that follow are all for the same site as drawings 1-6.
Digitisation of the Drawings Collection has been made possible through the generosity of the Leon Levy Foundation