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Preliminary and realised designs for cellar, c. 1792 (6)

Signed and dated

  • Main Year: 0


From the beginning, the renovation of the Bank Stock Office was constrained by the existing foundations of the hall. Soane placed his four piers precisely where four of Taylor's less substantial supports had been, and it appears that little was done to alter the existing cellar and foundations by Taylor.
The built design of the cellar (drawings 20-22) indicates a triple-aisled space, corresponding to the hall above, with a four-bay centre aisle flanked by seven-bay side aisles, these last corresponding to the seven bays of Taylor's original hall. Beneath the cellar floor, inverted segmental arches formed a foundation.
The series of preliminary designs (23-25), show Soane experimenting with converting the side aisles into four-bay spaces to conform to the centre aisle, but in the end Taylor's existing seven-bay side aisles were realised, possibly for reasons of economy. Soane probably did reinforce some of Taylor's buttressing. It would seem the cellar was used for storage; doors are indicated at the north and south ends. In the executed design, Soane placed in the centre a firebox to warm the stove in the hall above (see drawings 45-46).
The transverse sections also show the hollow-cone pot vaulting of the hall roof. For further information see section 5.



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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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Contents of Preliminary and realised designs for cellar, c. 1792 (6)