Survey of London: Volumes 29 and 30, St James Westminster, Part 1. Originally published by London County Council, London, 1960.
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Pall Mall, North Side, Existing Buildings
Nos. 13–15 (consec.) Pall Mall
The building now known as Crusader House at Nos. 13–15 Pall Mall was built in 1892–3 as a block of service flats and business premises. The architects were Messrs. W. S. Joseph and C. J. Smithem, of Finsbury Pavement, (fn. 2) and the builders were Mark Patrick and Son and J. T. Chappell. (fn. 3)
Crusader House has a stone front of florid character, a French Renaissance hotchpotch. The composition consists of a granite-faced ground storey, containing a pompous doorway flanked by pairs of large windows, and an upper face of four storeys with a five-window-wide centre, slightly recessed between narrow wings with a three-light window in each storey. A heavy stone-balustraded balcony spans the entire front at third-storey level, and there is an iron-railed balcony to the five middle windows of the fourth storey. The richly decorated attic has a five-bay loggia with paired columns, between rusticated wings, and the front is finished with elaborate pilastered and pedimented dormers rising against the steep roofs.
Nos. 16–17 Pall Mall
Nos. 16–17 Pall Mall were built in 1913; the architects were Messrs. Dunn, Watson and Curtis Green. The stone-faced front is a freely treated Renaissance composition with a simply designed ground storey, a lofty second stage embracing two storeys, a third stage below the main entablature, and an attic above. The ground storey contains three openings, an entrance doorway flanked by wide show windows. Each storey in the second stage has three windows, both tiers being united by their framing and evenly spaced between plain piers. The upper three windows are furnished with wrought-iron balconies, and the head of the framing architraves are broken round friezetablets carved with festoons, these tablets rising into segmental pediments. The windows of the third stage each have two lights and are framed with moulded architraves, broken in at the sides. The piers between these windows are decorated with vases in plain niches, and the main entablature has a plain frieze and a dentilled cornice. In the attic stage are three simply treated three-light windows, and four tall dormer windows, dressed with segmental pediments, project from the slated roof slope.
No. 22 Pall Mall
No. 22 Pall Mall was built between 1878 and 1880 for the Imperial Insurance Company from the designs of Messrs. Osborn and Russell of South Street, Finsbury. (fn. 4) Since 1949 the premises have been used as the West End branch of the Scottish Amicable Life Assurance Society, Ltd. (fn. 5)
The building has a narrow front of five storeys, built in dull-red brick with cut and moulded ornament, the design showing the influence of Norman Shaw's early 'Queen Anne' manner. Above the heavy entablature of the three-bay ground storey, each succeeding storey is bounded by plain pilasters and finished with an entablature, its panelled frieze forming the apron of the window above. The dominant feature is the shallow three-faced bay containing the second-, third- and fourth-storey windows, each divided by mullions and transoms, the latter arched over the middle light. The wide piers flanking the bay are ornamented with niches, the upper ones in tabernacle frames, all coarsely detailed. In the fifth storey the bay is replaced by a group of three segmental-headed windows, and the front is finished with a scrolled segmental pediment over the middle window.
The Junior Carlton Club
In 1864 the waiting list for election to the Carlton Club was so long as to call for the formation of another club devoted to the promotion of Conservative interests. The first recorded meeting of the provisional committee of the Junior Carlton Club was held at the Carlton Club on 11 February 1864, when Viscount Neville (later Marquis of Abergavenny) presided. The foundation committee, which continued in office until 1870, consisted of thirty members, of whom eighteen were members of Parliament. It included Lord Robert Cecil, who later became the third Marquis of Salisbury and Prime Minister, Lord Naas, later sixth Earl of Mayo and Viceroy and GovernorGeneral of India, Frederick Lygon (later sixth Earl Beauchamp), who helped in the foundation of Keble College, Oxford, James Lowther, later chief secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, and Sir Richard Bromley, an eminent civil servant. (fn. 6)
At a meeting held on 15 June 1864 in Victoria Street it was decided that the club should consist of 1500 members, and on 1 July temporary quarters were opened at No. 14 Regent Street. (fn. 7) In response to advertisements for permanent accommodation several sites or buildings in St. James's Street, Regent Street and Piccadilly were considered; the site in Pall Mall was selected because it was freehold and easily accessible from the Houses of Parliament. (fn. 8)
The site was eventually acquired in 1866 after some delay in purchasing the interests of the tenants in occupation; it had frontages of some 120 feet to both Pall Mall and St. James's Square, and had previously been occupied by six small houses. (fn. 9) It did not include Adair House at the western extremity of the block on the north side of Pall Mall and backing on to the square, which was not purchased by the club until 1880.
Building work began in the latter part of 1866, the architect being David Brandon and the contractors Lucas Brothers, whose tender was for £35,545. (fn. 10) There appears to have been some modification of the design during the course of erection, for an engraving published in The Builder in July 1867 shows the cornice one storey higher than as actually built. (fn. 11) The club-house was completed in 1869 (fn. 7) (Plate 120) in which year a fire caused considerable damage on the ground floor, and to the roof which was in great part destroyed. (fn. 12)
In 1873 Adair House, which adjoined the west end of the club-house as it then was, was sold by auction for £35,500. The Junior Carlton Club had previously offered a larger sum for this house, (fn. 13) which was ultimately purchased by the club in 1880 (fn. 7) for £25,000. (fn. 14) This acquisition increased the club's frontage by some forty-five feet, and in 1885–6 the club-house was enlarged by the addition of a morning-room, library and billiardroom on the site of Adair House. The principal entrance was removed from the eastern extremity to the centre of the Pall Mall front, where an open portico was formed; bay windows were added on to the ground floor at the east and west ends of the Pall Mall front. The new entrance hall was ornamented with marble, and the staircase was reconstructed. The architect was J. Macvicar Anderson and the contractors Messrs. Holland and Hannen (Plates 121, 123). (fn. 12)
In 1923 the roof of the building was reconstructed to provide bedrooms for members; the architect was W. E. Watson. (fn. 16) In 1925 the freehold of No. 29 Pall Mall and No. 23 St. James's Square, which adjoined the east end of the clubhouse, was acquired and in 1929–30 reconstructed to provide a ladies' annexe; two squash courts were erected in the roof of the main building. The architects were Sydney Tatchell and Geoffrey Wilson. The roof was completed in its present form in 1936 by the addition of another squash court at the west end; the architect was F. J. Wills. (fn. 16) In 1955 Nos. 29 Pall Mall and 23 St. James's Square were sold, and the present ladies' annexe is incorporated in the main building. (fn. 17)
One of the club's notable possessions is the circular table which formerly belonged to Benjamin Disraeli, a trustee of the club, and which was used by him for political meetings at his house in Dover Street from 1868 to 1874. (fn. 17)
The club-house completed in 1869, from David Brandon's designs, was an oblong building with a frontage to Pall Mall of about 120 feet, the same to St. James's Square, and a depth of about 63 feet (Plate 120). The planning was simple and effective, with rooms north and south of a wall running lengthwise, dividing each floor into two parts of almost equal width. On the ground floor, the part fronting south to Pall Mall contained the morningroom, 89 feet long and 27 feet wide, divided by a columned screen into two compartments, a square to the west of an oblong. At the east end was the hall, 27 feet wide and 23 feet 6 inches deep, with a short flight of steps rising to an ante, serving a reception-room, 29 feet 6 inches wide and 20 feet 6 inches deep, and opening on the west to a corridor extending behind the morning-room as far as the smoking-room, 28 feet wide and 29 feet 6 inches deep, filling the north-west corner of the plan. The corridor was open to a spacious staircase well just off the centre of the north range, having on its west side the secondary stairs and a service-room, and on its east side a cloak-room. The southern part of the first floor was mostly taken up by the coffee-room, having the unbroken length of 90 feet and a width of 27 feet, with a glazed screen at the west end opening to the strangers' coffee-room. This room was a square of 27 feet with an apse on its north side where doors led to the house dining-room, 28 feet wide and 20 feet 6 inches deep. On the east side of the principal staircase, and filling the north-east angle of the plan, was the library, 40 feet wide and 29 feet 6 inches deep. The principal staircase continued to the second floor, where there were two billiard-rooms, a visitors' smoking-room, and offices, together with eighteen bedrooms for members. The top storey contained bedroom and dormitory accommodation for some fifty servants; in the basement-mezzanine were members' baths and dressing-rooms, and headstaff accommodation; and in the basement was the large kitchen, 40 feet by 29 feet, with all its offices. (fn. 8)
J. Macvicar Anderson's drawings for the alterations and addition made in 1885–6 are preserved in the library of the Royal Institute of British Architects (Plate 121). His western addition, on the site of Adair House, provided one great room on each principal floor, a library above a morning-room, and a billiard-room on the second floor. The ground floor of the original building was extensively altered to form a new entrance hall in the middle of the lengthened south front, with a square writing-room on the west and a large Lshaped smoking-room on the east. A columned screen divides the hall into two compartments, the northern one opening to the spacious oblong staircase compartment, two storeys high, with the stair rising to a wide landing on the east where a smaller staircase serves the upper floors. The first-floor coffee-room, already long, was almost doubled in size by taking in the strangers' coffeeroom at the west end, and by forming a columned screen opening to the former library on the north front.
When designing the exterior (Plate 120a), Brandon turned away from the extravagant Venetian club-houses lately built nearby, and looked to Barry's chaste Roman palazzi. The north and south fronts are both astylar, but that facing the square seems to reflect Bridgwater House in a rather crowded composition with a recessed centre, five windows wide with the middle one accented, and flanks each two windows wide, whereas the Pall Mall front echoes the serene unbroken tiers of windows of the Reform Club. A note of mid-Victorian restlessness appears in the ground storey of this front, where, originally, seven round-arched windows were set in a rusticated arcade, with heavy moulded archivolts rising from enriched imposts. At each end projected a Doric porch with two columns of red granite, that to the east serving the entrance, and that to the west framing a shallow bow window—an arrangement copied, no doubt, from the Conservative Club. The smooth ashlar face of the second storey contained nine evenly spaced windows with boldly articulated tabernacleframes, the Corinthian columns with red granite shafts and the segmental pediments filled with carving, as at Bridgwater House. The third storey had nine round-arched windows in triangular pedimented frames, providing one Farnesian effect absent from the Reform Club. Brandon originally intended to include an attic storey with nine almost square windows below the great bracketed main entablature, and to dress the crowning balustrade with tall-necked urns. (fn. 8)
When Macvicar Anderson extended the building westwards, he recomposed this front with his customary skill (Plates 121a, 122a). In the centre of the lengthened ground storey he formed an imposing new porch with paired columns (probably using the original granite shafts) and at each end he added a large splay-sided bay, with an archheaded window in each face, and a Doric entablature matching that of the porch. Three windows, one of them blind, all dressed and spaced to match those existing, were added to each upper storey, and to avoid the solecism of an even number of windows with a solid pier over the void of the porch, he united the middle two openings to form a three-light window in the centre of each tier. This treatment was echoed on the narrow west elevation, where each upper storey contains a threelight window between niches in tabernacle-frames. The St. James's Square front was a fixed composition of three parts, strongly defined by rusticated piers, to which he could only add. Fortunately, both fronts shared the same horizontal dressings, so that his addition is well related to the new west front and to the original north front. Its dominating feature is a wide canted bay, windowed in each face, rising through two storeys. The flat face of the third storey contains three windows, the middle one pedimented, which open to the balustraded flat over the bay.
The later additions have not been so successfully integrated with the original building, the former ladies' annexe on the east (which is not now part of the club) by reason of its small-scaled fenestration, and the two-storeyed roof structure because of its great bulk.
Macvicar Anderson was responsible for much of the present interior decoration, which is in the grand manner, rich and Italianate in style. Great use is made of coloured marbles and scagliola, particularly in the entrance hall and principal staircase where the white marble stairs, with a massive balustrade of grey and yellow marble or scagliola, rises round the north, west and south walls of the oblong two-storeyed compartment, its east side formed by superimposed colonnades of widely spaced square columns with panelled scagliola shafts. The lower colonnade opens to the north compartment of the entrance hall, where the monumental chimneypiece is flanked by marble statues of Lord Beaconsfield and the fourteenth Earl of Derby, the latter carved by William Theed, junior. (fn. 18)
The upper colonnade opens to a second staircase well, containing the iron-railed staircase to the upper storeys (Plate 122b). Both staircase wells have flat ceilings, divided by guilloche-ribs into a geometrical pattern of compartments.
The morning-room (Plate 123b), on the ground floor of Macvicar Anderson's extension, is a large oblong room with a three-light bay window in each end wall, and three windows in the long west wall, one in each of the three bays into which the wall is divided by paired pilasters responding to the free-standing columns on the east side. An Ionic order is used, the columns and pilasters have green marbled scagliola shafts, and the rich entablature is carried round the walls, surrounding a ceiling divided into compartments, that in the centre being circular. In each end bay of the east wall is a fireplace, with a massive chimneypiece of brownfigured marble—scrolled consoles flanking an architrave, with a frieze and plain tablet below the cornice-shelf. The writing-room (now a bar) was part of the original morning-room, and the compartmented ceiling with its large central octagon is probably original. The elegant chimneypiece, in white and Siena marbles, appears to be a mid eighteenth-century example and is said to have come from Adair House.
The strangers' room (originally library) is on the first floor over the morning-room, to which it is in many respects similar. Here, however, a Corinthian order is employed, and the fireplaces are in the west wall flanking a shallow bay window not expressed externally. The middle bay on the east side contains a monumental bookcase, and there are small dado-high bookcases in the flanking bays. The coffee-room (Plate 123a) impresses with its unusual length, and its unbroken ceiling, formed in a repeating pattern of octagons, hexagons, and squares, surrounded by a shallow ribbed cove. At the west end, and at the east end of the north side, are screens of Corinthian columns, with red-figured marbled scagliola shafts, opening to the west and north-east compartments.
The Army and Navy Club
No. 40 Pall Mall
The present building on this site was erected in 1850, the architects being Messrs. Garland and Christopher; John Clemence was the builder. (fn. 19) The new building was first occupied by two insurance companies. (fn. 5) The tall and narrow front is an Italianate design, carried out in painted stucco. Apart from the shop-front, the ground storey appears to be original, with one wide and one narrow bay divided by rustic piers, the courses alternately wide and narrow, ending in consoles with lion-head stops flanking the fascia. The upper part of the front is dominated by a shallow segmental bow containing the two windows of the second, third and fourth storeys, all dressed with architraves, those in the second storey being finished with triangular pediments, and those in the third storey with plain friezes and cornices. Flanking the bow are plain-shafted Corinthian pilasters, raised on tall rusticated pedestals and supporting the bracketed entablature that finishes the bow. The flat face of the fifth storey is bounded by panelled pilasters and contains two casement windows, and the front is finished with a balustrade.
Nos. 44 and 45 Pall Mall
From at least 1740 until about 1905 No. 44 was used as a tavern called the Star and Garter. (fn. 1) The first known licensed victualler to occupy the premises was Alexander Frazer in 1740. (fn. 20) He had previously kept another tavern in Pall Mall, for he is recorded as a licensee 'of Pall Mall' as early as 1729; (fn. 21) his name does not appear in the ratebooks until 1740. Until the middle of the nineteenth century No. 45 was occupied by tradesmen and shopkeepers, and thereafter by a succession of solicitors, insurance companies and banks, including that of King and Company from 1869 to 1903. (fn. 22)
In an obituary notice of Sir Charles Barry The Builder states that Pall Mall 'possesses two ordinary house façades of great cleverness, executed by Barry'. (fn. 23) This statement does not, of course, refer to the Travellers' Club or to the Reform Club, or to the building occupied by the Imperial Fire Assurance Company, all of which are mentioned elsewhere in the obituary notice, and it may be that it refers to Nos. 44–45 Pall Mall. The ratebooks indicate that the two houses were rebuilt in 1840–1, when Barry was at the height of his fame.
Although the existing house-fronts have been faced with unpainted cement, coursed with imitation stone jointing, something of their original character remains. Above the modern ground storey is a plain face containing the secondand third-storey windows. No. 44 has one threelight window to each storey, the lower being flanked by Doric pilasters with consoles supporting a projecting cornice-hood that forms a balcony to the upper window. In No. 45 there are two windows to each storey, the lower having roundarched openings framed in unbroken moulded architraves, the upper being plain but for the moulded sills resting on triglyph-brackets. A wide and plain band appears to replace the original entablature, above which is the attic storey. No. 44 has a group of three round-arched windows, with moulded archivolts rising from plain imposts; No. 45 has two plain rectangular windows set in a recessed face between two pilasters. No. 44 is finished with a small-scale arcaded parapet, behind which is a three-light dormer, and No. 45 has a balustraded parapet half concealing two dormers. No. 44 has been occupied since 1908 by the Royal Exchange Assurance, which now also occupies No. 45. (fn. 5)
No. 49 Pall Mall
No. 49 Pall Mall was built between 1894 and 1897 from the designs of Henry Hyman Collins and Marcus Evelyn Collins of 61 Old Broad Street. The builder was Henry Lovatt of York Road, King's Cross. The ground floor was designed to serve as shops or offices, and most of the upper floors as service flats.
During the war of 1939–45 the back wing of the building was damaged by enemy action. Between 1945 and 1952 the whole premises, together with those of No. 48 Pall Mall, were converted into offices for the headquarters of the British Legion. This involved the complete rebuilding of No. 48, which had been seriously damaged by enemy action. The original façade of No. 49 was retained unaltered, and that of the new No. 48 designed to blend with it. The architects were Messrs. Douglas and J. D. Wood. (fn. 24)
Above the altered ground storey, which embraces No. 48, rises a stone front of frilly French Renaissance character, containing three principal and two attic storeys. A pair of wide canted bays rise through the three principal storeys and are linked in the third by an arch with a cartouche keystone. The bays are flanked by Corinthian columns on tall pedestals, carrying an entablature which continues round the bays and above the linking arch. Each attic storey contains three twolight windows, the middle forming part of an accented feature flanked by superimposed pairs of Doric pilasters. In the sloping roof are three pedimented dormers and, above them, three circular lights.
No. 52 Pall Mall
The Marlborough Club was established in or shortly before 1868 by the Prince of Wales (later Edward VII) and a group of his friends for the purpose of securing 'a convenient and agreeable place of meeting for a Society of Gentlemen'. (fn. 25) The institution of the club 'was the Prince's mode of protest against the restrictions on smoking which were imposed on him at White's Club'. The first trustees of the club, which took its name from Marlborough House, the Prince's London residence, were the Duke of Sutherland, the Earl of Leicester and Lord Wharncliffe; the first chairman of the committee was Viscount Walden, afterwards ninth Marquis of Tweeddale. (fn. 26)
In May 1868 the Marlborough Club purchased for £18,000 the freehold of the British Institution at No. 52 Pall Mall, and shortly afterwards a new club-house was erected upon the site; the architect was David Brandon, and the contractors Messrs. Trollope and Sons. (fn. 27)
For the narrow front of the Marlborough Club, David Brandon designed a bold and simple elevation in a restrained Jacobean manner (Plate 124b). It was stone-faced and comprised three storeys, defined by moulded stringcourses. The ground storey contained two openings, a plain roundheaded window on the right, and the entrancedoorway on the left, also round-headed but dressed with enriched pilasters and a moulded architrave. Between these openings was a square pier, helping to support the moulded corbelling of the large canted bay which dominated the front and contained the mullioned-and-transomed windows of the second and third storeys. This bay was finished with a balustrade, stopped against the curved and stepped crowning gable.
Photographs reproduced in Country Life (fn. 25) show that the interior was simply decorated, and that the coffee-room was divided into the customary three compartments by Ionic columns paired with antae against the long side walls.
Until his accession to the throne the Prince of Wales used the club constantly. (fn. 25) The membership was limited to 450, and the entrance fee and annual subscription were high. (fn. 28) After Edward VII's death in 1910 George V succeeded him as president and patron. (fn. 25)
On 31 December 1945 the Windham, Orleans and Marlborough Clubs amalgamated to form the Marlborough-Windham Club. Rising costs and lack of candidates for admission compelled this club to close in December 1953. (fn. 25) In 1954–5 the building was converted to office use; an extra storey was added and the façade was altered and refaced with reconstructed Portland stone. (fn. 29)
No. 54 Pall Mall
Messrs. Foster, auctioneers, occupied the site of this building from the early 1830's until 1940. (fn. 30) The front part of the premises facing Pall Mall was rebuilt in 1890–1 from the designs of Messrs. Karslake and Mortimer, architects and surveyors, of Old Queen Street. The back portion, referred to in 1885 as 'the gallery', was not included in this rebuilding, and appears to have been reconstructed in 1931. (fn. 31)
The Pall Mall front is built of stone and contains a semi-basement, four main storeys, and an attic. The design is a curious blend of medieval and classical motifs, the ground storey being rusticated and fronted by a portico of two bays, with three rusticated Ionic columns supporting an entablature and a balustrade which serves as a balcony to the second storey. The narrow frontage allows only three closely spaced windows to each upper storey, set in a face of smooth ashlar which is laced over with a web of wrought-iron balconies, and rises to form a steeply pitched gable, framed by a distorted pediment in which is set a Venetian window.
Nos. 64 and 64a Pall Mall and Nos. 1 and 2 St. James's Street
The present building at Nos. 64 and 64a Pall Mall and 1 and 2 St. James's Street is a wellknown work of the architect Richard Norman Shaw (Plate 272a). It was erected in 1882–3, the corner premises on the ground floor being occupied by the Alliance Assurance Company. The remainder of the ground floor was divided into two shops, one in Pall Mall and one in St. James's Street, and an entrance lobby from St. James's Street to twelve suites of residential chambers on the upper floors. Kitchens and service rooms occupied the basement and attics. The subbasement was intended for use as a wine vault. (fn. 32) Building work appears to have begun early in 1882, and the new premises were completed in 1883. (fn. 33) The builders were Messrs. Cubitt & Co. (fn. 32)
Built of warm red brick liberally coursed with plain stone bands, and richly dressed with moulded brick and carved stonework, this prominently sited building belongs to Norman Shaw's most romantic 'Old Heidelberg' phase. There are four storeys, the first two very lofty, and two floors in the roof, with windows in the two great gables. In each face of the ground storey are two shop-fronts, recessed in wide round-arched openings, the arches of brick and stone voussoirs springing from dwarf piers and having splayed reveals and keystones, the last surmounted by console-trusses supporting the long iron-railed balconies of the second storey. Between the arches of the St. James's Street front is the main doorway, with a doorcase of banded pilasters and a cornice-hood on consoles. The upper face of each front contains three tiers of mullioned-and-transomed windows, a sequence of five towards Pall Mall, and two groups of three towards St. James's Street, the southern group contained in a recessed face. Between the tall twice-transomed windows of the second storey are Ionic pilasters on pedestals, the upper windows being divided by simple stonebanded pilasters and having apron panels of moulded brickwork. The angle of the building is boldly emphasized by an octagonal turret, corbelled out from the ground storey and containing in each of its exposed faces four windows, one over the other, varying in width and except for the top one finished with Baroque pediments, a different design for each storey. This turret is capped with an oversailing roof, but this is overtopped by the great gable of the Pall Mall front, containing two tiers of windows, five beneath two, and rising in ogee curves and console-flanked steppings to finish with a bold scrolled pediment. A similar, but smaller gable rises above the projecting northern part of the St. James's Street front, containing three windows below one, and finishing with a segmental pediment. The tall chimney-stacks, and an elaborate weather-vane rising from the turret roof, add complexity to the skyline.