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  • image SC3

Model for the Bank of England, London, centre part of south (Threadneedle Street) front, designed by Sir John Soane

Painted wood

Height: 68.5cm
Width: 115cm
Depth: 12.7cm

Museum number: SC3

Curatorial note

Scale 2ft to 1in. In 1823 the year in which the reconstruction of the two offices at the south-east corner was completed, Soane again emphasised to the Building Committee the serious deterioration of Taylor’s screen walls which had been retained. He reminded the committee of his proposal in 1800 ‘that the South-east and South-west wings might at some future period be easily made to correspond with other parts of the Edifice, and thereby render the exterior of the Bank one uniform building’; also that these wings should be rebuilt according to his design (model MR16) recently submitted for the ‘rounding off the corner next St Bartholomew Lane. The committee subsequently approved the replacement of the old screen walls and also accepted the necessity of refacing Sampson’s original front in accordance with the design of the new wings. Having determined the form of the entire frontage Soane had a considerable part of it represented by three contiguous models; namely, the centre and eastern parts of the Threadneedle Street front (models SC3 and SC4 respectively) and the entire façade along Bartholomew Lane (model MP216). This latter incorporated the earlier north-east corner and return produced in 1796 together with the initial stage of the Lothbury front. When joined together these three models, showing only the major decorative features of the design, provided Soane with the first opportunity in thirty-five years to realize a coherent exterior to his complex of internal structures and courts.

Exhibition history

John Soane Architect: Master of Space and Light, Royal Academy of Arts, London, 11 September - 3 December 1999; Centro Palladio, Vicenza, April - August 2000; Hôtel de Rohan, Paris, January - April 2001; Canadian Centre for Architecture, Montreal, 16 May - 3 September 2001; Real Academia des Bellas Artes, Madrid, October - December 2001
Metropole London 1800 bis 1840, Villa Hügel, Essen, 6 June - 8 November 1992

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