Explore Collections Explore The Collections
You are here: CollectionsOnline  /  Five alternative preliminary designs, April to May 1811 (16)



Five alternative preliminary designs, April to May 1811 (16)

Signed and dated

  • Main Year: 0


The first five preliminary designs proposed demolishing the east and west wings of the old college and building an extensive new development to the south, retaining the existing chapel. The first design was an open quadrangular plan. The second design was an H-plan. The third was a cross-plan and the fourth and fifth designs were a closed quadrangular plan. These designs were illustrated by block plans and bird’s-eye views. They were delivered to the client on 16 May 1811 with a general estimate of £8,000. All of the schemes were rejected because they were deemed too extravagant and too expensive.
The alternative drawings show a variation of transom and mullion windows designed to echo the original seventeenth-century windows of the College, as seen in the survey drawings of section 1. Furthermore, brick pilasters provide a reference to the Gothic buttresses of the old chapel. These designs for incorporating elements of the original architecture continue to be developed in later drawings.
George Allen Underwood is recorded in the Day Books as having 'drawn plans for Dulwich College' on Wednesday 27th-30th March and Tuesday 2nd-8th April 1811. On Monday 1st April Underwood took the dimensions of Sir Bourgeois' pictures, presumably so to plan wall space within the galleries. George Bailey and George Allen Underwood are the most frequently mentioned pupils in the Day Book at this stage of designing. It seems Underwood worked mostly on plans and Bailey on perspectives.



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

If you have any further information about this object, please contact us: drawings@soane.org.uk

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.

Browse (via the vertical menu to the left) and search results for Drawings include a mixture of Concise catalogue records – drawn from an outline list of the collection – and fuller records where drawings have been catalogued in more detail (an ongoing process).  

Contents of Five alternative preliminary designs, April to May 1811 (16)