Saturday, 27 April 2013

City of London (3) - The Royal Exchange

The Royal Exchange sits at what was the absolute financial heart of the City, on a site between Cornhill and Threadneedle Street, facing Mansion House and the Bank of England.

The building was designed by Sir William Tite, and was opened by Queen Victoria in 1844. It has the bonus for this blog of having three clocks. The first is on the clock tower at the eastern end of the site.

There are then two identical clocks on the main body of the building. Below is the one on Threadneedle Street, with the more modern financial district buildings (including Tower 42) in the background. This move to modern trading floors is reflected in the fact that the Royal Exchange is now inhabited by upmarket shops and restaurants following a major refurbishment in 2001.

The twin clock, on Cornhill, is shown below.

A sense of the immense size of the building is given in the photo below - the two clocks can just be made out. Behind the building is the "Cheesegrater" tower under construction.

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