Preliminary upper-rooms designs, c. March 1792 (2) seen jl
In March 1792, Soane elaborated a scheme for placing a pair of upper rooms over the hall's east and west side-arms. The dated drawing is from 10 March (drawing 12). Whether or not Soane developed the upper-rooms scheme at the request of the Bank's directors is not know; it seems likely that he initiated such a change in the programme on his own. The upper-storey rooms, measuring roughly 25 feet by 9 feet, may have been intended for the storage of ledgers used in the Bank Stock Office, or as private offices for the principal clerks (see drawing 66 where these private offices are placed in the hall's north end). Alternatively, the upper-rooms may have been intended for purposes disconnected from the space below; a distinct possibility considering the apparent absence of any stairs linking the hall's upper and lower levels. As the various sections show, the upper-rooms would have received indirect light via seven-foot high segmental lunettes facing into the crossing beneath the hall's central lantern. Doors at the ends would lead into passages built over the hall's corner bays, lit by lunette windows looking over lowered roofs of the hall's north and south arms. The addition of the upper-rooms and passages would not have added to the overall height of the renovated hall, but would have resulted in the lowering of the vaults over all four arms projecting out of the crossing. This would have limited the light coming into the hall from the clerestory lunettes, and would have substantially darkened the perimeter of the hall. This may be one reason the scheme was not pursued further. The upper-rooms scheme appears in any event not to have been a very serious effort.