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image Image 1 for SM (278) 49/5/36
image Image 2 for SM (278) 49/5/36
  • image Image 1 for SM (278) 49/5/36
  • image Image 2 for SM (278) 49/5/36

Reference number

SM (278) 49/5/36


Design for completing the new government buildings, March 1829


278 Plan of the front and elevation of the new government buildings; (verso) outline plan of Downing Square and Downing Street with the new government buildings


bar scale of 1/12 inch to 1 foot


labelled (in Soane's hand): Door, A, B, C, Chimney Shafts / as executed except / the ?middle part A to be / added, Centre between B C corrected and (pencil) some dimensions given; (verso): Downing Square, Council Offices, Whitehall

Signed and dated

  • 7 March 1829

Medium and dimensions

Pen, sepia, pink, blue and burnt Sienna washes, (verso) pen, grey and yellow washes on two sheets of wove paper, affixed (543 x 1078)


Charles James Richardson (1809-71, pupil and assistant 1824-1837)


Soane's new government offices were completed up to the Treasury Passage (labelled 'C' on drawing 278) but the Home Office was not rebuilt until 1844 when it was included in Charles Barry's alterations. None of the south range was executed.
The verso of drawing 278 is datable to before February 1825 - before the idea of the south range was conceived.



Digitisation of the Drawings Collection has been made possible through the generosity of the Leon Levy Foundation

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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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