The Royal Exchange in 2009
|Location|| London, EC3 |
|Opening date||23 January 1571 (original structure)|
28 October 1844 (current structure)
|Owner||Oxford Properties Group Inc (since 2013)|
|No. of stores and services||33 stores; 5 restaurants and cafes|
|Public transit access|
The Royal Exchange in London was founded in the 16th century by the merchant Sir Thomas Gresham on the suggestion of his factor Richard Clough to act as a centre of commerce for the City of London.The site was provided by the City of London Corporation and the Worshipful Company of Mercers, who still jointly own the freehold. It is trapezoidal in shape and is flanked by Cornhill and Threadneedle Street, which converge at Bank junction in the heart of the City. It lies in the ward of Cornhill. The building's original design was inspired by a bourse Gresham had seen in Antwerp, the Antwerp bourse, and was Britain's first specialist commercial building.
Sir Richard Clough, known by his Welsh contemporaries as Rhisiart Clwch, was a merchant from Denbigh, north-east Wales, and an agent of Queen Elizabeth I of England.
Commerce relates to "the exchange of goods and services, especially on a large scale". It includes legal, economic, political, social, cultural and technological systems that operate in a country or in international trade.
The City of London is a city and local government district that contains the historic centre and the primary central business district (CBD) of London. It constituted most of London from its settlement by the Romans in the 1st century AD to the Middle Ages, but the agglomeration has since grown far beyond the City's borders. The City is now only a tiny part of the metropolis of London, though it remains a notable part of central London. Administratively, it forms one of the 33 local authority districts of Greater London; however, the City of London is not a London borough, a status reserved for the other 32 districts. It is also a separate county of England, being an enclave surrounded by Greater London. It is the smallest county in the United Kingdom.
It has twice been destroyed by fire and subsequently rebuilt. The present building was designed by Sir William Tite in the 1840s. The site was notably occupied by the Lloyd's insurance market for nearly 150 years. Today the Royal Exchange contains a Courtyard Grand Cafe, Threadneedle Cocktail Bar, Sauterelle Restaurant, luxury shops, and offices.
Lloyd's of London, generally known simply as Lloyd's, is an insurance and reinsurance market located in London, United Kingdom. Unlike most of its competitors in the industry, it is not an insurance company; rather, Lloyd's is a corporate body governed by the Lloyd's Act 1871 and subsequent Acts of Parliament and operates as a partially-mutualised marketplace within which multiple financial backers, grouped in syndicates, come together to pool and spread risk. These underwriters, or "members", are a collection of both corporations and private individuals, the latter being traditionally known as "Names".
Traditionally, the steps of the Royal Exchange is the place where certain royal proclamations (such as the dissolution of parliament) are read out by either a herald or a crier. Following the death or abdication of a monarch and the confirmation of the next monarch's accession to the throne by the Accession Council, the Royal Exchange Building is one of the locations where a herald proclaims the new monarch's reign to the public.
A herald, or a herald of arms, is an officer of arms, ranking between pursuivant and king of arms. The title is commonly applied more broadly to all officers of arms.
In the United Kingdom, the Accession Council is a ceremonial body which assembles in St James's Palace upon the death of a monarch, to formally proclaim the accession of the successor to the throne. Under the terms of the Act of Settlement 1701, a new monarch succeeds automatically. The proclamation merely confirms by name the identity of the heir who has succeeded.
Richard Clough initially suggested building the exchange in 1562, and oversaw the importing of some of the materials from Antwerp: stone, slate, wainscot and glass, for which he paid thousands of pounds himself.The Royal Exchange was officially opened on 23 January 1571 by Queen Elizabeth I who awarded the building its royal title and a licence to sell alcohol and valuable goods. Only the exchange of goods took place until the 17th century. Stockbrokers were not allowed into the Royal Exchange because of their rude manners, hence they had to operate from other establishments in the vicinity, such as Jonathan's Coffee-House. Gresham's original building was destroyed in the Great Fire of London in 1666. A second complex was built on the site, designed by Edward Jarman and opened in 1669, but that also burned down, on 10 January 1838. It had been used by the Lloyd's insurance market, which was forced to move temporarily to South Sea House following the 1838 fire.
Elizabeth I was Queen of England and Ireland from 17 November 1558 until her death on 24 March 1603. Sometimes called The Virgin Queen, Gloriana or Good Queen Bess, Elizabeth was the last of the five monarchs of the House of Tudor.
A stockbroker, share broker, registered representative, trading representative, or more broadly, an investment broker, investment adviser, financial adviser, wealth manager, or investment professional is a regulated broker, broker-dealer, or Registered Investment Adviser who may provide financial advisory and investment management services and execute transactions such as the purchase or sale of stocks and other investments to financial market participants in return for a commission, markup, or fee, which could be based on a flat rate, percentage of assets, or hourly rate. Examples of professional designations held by individuals in this field, which affects the types of investments they are permitted to sell and the services they provide include Chartered Financial Consultants, Certified Financial Planners or Chartered Financial Analysts, Chartered Strategic Wealth Professionals, Chartered Financial Planners, and Master of Business Administration. The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) provides an online tool designed to help understand professional designations in the United States.
Jonathan's Coffee-House was a significant meeting place in London in the 17th and 18th centuries, famous as the original site of the London Stock Exchange.
The third Royal Exchange building, which still stands today, was designed by Sir William Tite and adheres to the original layout–consisting of a four-sided structure surrounding a central courtyard where merchants and tradesmen could do business. The internal works, designed by Edward I'Anson in 1837, made use of concrete—an early example of this modern construction method.It features pediment sculptures by Richard Westmacott (the younger), and ornamental cast ironwork by Henry Grissell's Regent's Canal Ironworks. It was opened by Queen Victoria on 28 October 1844 though trading did not commence until 1 January 1845.
Edward I'Anson was an English architect who was president of both the Royal Institute of British Architects and the Surveyors' Institution. He was a leading designer of commercial buildings in the City of London.
Concrete, usually Portland cement concrete, is a composite material composed of fine and coarse aggregate bonded together with a fluid cement that hardens over time—most frequently in the past a lime-based cement binder, such as lime putty, but sometimes with other hydraulic cements, such as a calcium aluminate cement or Portland Cement. It is distinguished from other, non-cementitious types of concrete all binding some form of aggregate together, including asphalt concrete with a bitumen binder, which is frequently used for road surfaces, and polymer concretes that use polymers as a binder.
Richard Westmacott RA – also sometimes described as Richard Westmacott III – was a prominent English sculptor of the early and mid-19th century.
In June 1844, just before the reopening of the Royal Exchange, a statue of Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, was unveiled outside the building. The bronze used to cast it was sourced from enemy cannons captured during Wellington's continental campaigns.
Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, was a British soldier and Tory statesman who was one of the leading military and political figures of 19th-century Britain, serving twice as Prime Minister. His victory against Napoleon at the Battle of Waterloo in 1815 puts him in the first rank of Britain's military heroes.
A cannon is a type of gun classified as artillery that launches a projectile using propellant. In the past, gunpowder was the primary propellant before the invention of smokeless powder during the 19th century. Cannon vary in caliber, range, mobility, rate of fire, angle of fire, and firepower; different forms of cannon combine and balance these attributes in varying degrees, depending on their intended use on the battlefield. The word cannon is derived from several languages, in which the original definition can usually be translated as tube, cane, or reed. In the modern era, the term cannon has fallen into decline, replaced by guns or artillery if not a more specific term such as mortar or howitzer, except for high calibre automatic weapons firing bigger rounds than machine guns, called autocannons.
Paul Julius Reuter established the Reuters news agency at No. 1, Royal Exchange Buildings (opposite and to the east of the Royal Exchange) in 1851. It later moved to Fleet Street.
The western end of the building consists of a portico of eight Corinthian columns topped by a pediment containing a tympanum with a sculptured frieze by Richard Westmacott (the younger). The central figure represents Commerce, above an inscription from the Bible: "The Earth is the Lord's, and the fulness thereof". The Latin inscription states that the Exchange was founded in the thirteenth year of Queen Elizabeth, and restored in the eighth of Queen Victoria.
Two statues stand in niches in the central courtyard. Charles II a copy of 1792 by John Spiller after Grinling Gibbons' statue in the centre of the C17 courtyard, and Queen Elizabeth I by M. L. Watson, 1844. The Charles II statue survived the fire of 1838 that destroyed the previous Exchange. The Elizabeth I statue was commissioned as she was the monarch who had conferred the status "Royal" on the Exchange.
From 1892, twenty-four scenes from London's history were painted on the first-floor walls by artists including Sir Frederick Leighton, Sir Frank Brangwyn and Stanhope Forbes. The murals run as a sequence.
With the outbreak of the Second World War, trading at the Royal Exchange virtually ended. At the war's end, the building had survived the Blitz, albeit with some near misses.
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In 1982 the Royal Exchange was in disrepair – particularly the glass roof was in danger of collapse. The newly-formed London International Financial Futures Exchange (LIFFE) was the main tenant, using the courtyard for the trading floor, all done without touching the framework of the original building. Other tenants moved in later and as a result of LIFFE's presence, not only did the City experience growth in trading and greater efficiency in pricing, but also a boost to the area around the Royal Exchange which had hitherto been sleepy at best.
In 2001 the Royal Exchange (interiors and courtyard) was once again extensively remodelled, this time by architects Aukett Fitzroy Robinson. Reconstruction of the courtyard created new boutiques and restaurants to add to the existing retailers on the perimeter. The Royal Exchange is now a retail centre with shops, cafes and restaurants. The restaurants include Royal Exchange Grand Cafe, Threadneedle Cockatil Bar and Sauterelle Restaurant (http://www.royalexchange-grandcafe.co.uk/). Shops include Boodles, Hermès, Georg Jensen and Tiffany & Co. In 2003 the Grand Café and Bar was launched and completed the building.
In Royal Exchange Buildings, a lane by the eastern entrance to the Royal Exchange, stand two statues: one of Paul Julius Reuter who founded his news agency there, and one of George Peabody who founded the Peabody Trust and a business which became J.P. Morgan & Co.
In 2013 the Royal Exchange was sold by the Anglo Irish Private Bank to Oxford Properties, a Canadian property company. It had been announced that the site would be sold with a 104-year lease.Oxford Properties Group, a division of the Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System, bought the retail centre for a reported £86.5 million.
Buckingham Palace is the London residence and administrative headquarters of the monarch of the United Kingdom. Located in the City of Westminster, the palace is often at the centre of state occasions and royal hospitality. It has been a focal point for the British people at times of national rejoicing and mourning.
Hampton Court Palace is a royal palace in the borough of Richmond upon Thames, 12 miles south west and upstream of central London on the River Thames. Building of the palace began in 1515 for Cardinal Thomas Wolsey, a favourite of King Henry VIII. In 1529, as Wolsey fell from favour, the cardinal gave the palace to the King to check his disgrace; Henry VIII later enlarged it. Along with St James's Palace, it is one of only two surviving palaces out of the many owned by Henry.
Sir Thomas Gresham the Elder, was an English merchant and financier who acted on behalf of King Edward VI (1547–1553) and Edward's half-sisters, queens Mary I (1553–1558) and Elizabeth I (1558–1603).
Tower 42 is a 183 metres (600 ft) skyscraper in the City of London. It is the fifth-tallest in the City and thirteenth-tallest in Greater London. Its original name was the National Westminster Tower, having been built to house NatWest's international headquarters. Seen from above, the shape of the tower resembles that of the NatWest logo.
The Royal Victorian Order is a dynastic order of knighthood established in 1896 by Queen Victoria. It recognises distinguished personal service to the monarch of the Commonwealth realms, members of the monarch's family, or to any viceroy or senior representative of the monarch. The present monarch, Queen Elizabeth II, is the sovereign of the order, the order's motto is Victoria, and its official day is 20 June. The order's chapel is the Savoy Chapel in London.
The London International Financial Futures and Options Exchange (LIFFE, pronounced 'life', is a futures exchange based in London.
The Groom of the Stool was the most intimate of an English monarch's courtiers, responsible for assisting the king in excretion and ablution.
Cornhill is a ward and street in the City of London, the historic nucleus and financial centre of modern London. The street runs between Bank junction and Leadenhall Street.
Katheryn of Berain, sometimes called Mam Cymru, was a Welsh noblewoman noted for her four marriages and her extensive network of descendants and relations.
Sir John Gresham was an English merchant, courtier and financier who worked for King Henry VIII of England, Cardinal Wolsey and Thomas Cromwell. He was Lord Mayor of London and founded Gresham's School. He was the brother of Sir Richard Gresham.
Musgrave Lewthwaite Watson was an English sculptor of the early 19th century.
St. Bartholomew-by-the-Exchange was a church in the City of London located on Bartholomew Lane, off Threadneedle Street. Recorded since the 13th century, the church was destroyed in the Great Fire of 1666, then rebuilt by the office of Sir Christopher Wren. The rebuilt church was demolished in 1840.
St Benet Fink was a church and parish in the City of London located on what is now Threadneedle Street. Recorded since the 13th century, the church was destroyed in the Great Fire of London of 1666, then rebuilt to the designs of Sir Christopher Wren. The Wren church was demolished between 1841 and 1846.
Exchange Alley or Change Alley is a narrow alleyway connecting shops and coffeehouses in an old neighbourhood of the City of London. It served as a convenient shortcut from the Royal Exchange on Cornhill to the Post Office on Lombard Street and remains as one of a number of alleys linking the two streets. Shops once located in Exchange Alley included ship chandlers, makers of navigation instruments such as telescopes, and goldsmiths from Lombardy in Italy.
The Royal Exchange Square is a public square in Glasgow, Scotland. The square lies between Buchanan Street and Queen Street, opening out at the junction of Queen Street with Ingram Street to the south of George Square. It is also easily accessible from Buchanan Street on the west side of the square, through two prominent archways at Royal Bank Place. The square is a landmark due to its distinguished architecture which attracts many visitors. It is one of six squares in the city centre.
Francis Hastings, Lord Hastings was the son of George Hastings, 4th Earl of Huntingdon and Dorothy Port. He married Sarah Harington, daughter of Sir James Harington and Lucy Sydney. They had five children:
Bank junction is a major road junction in the City of London, the historic and financial centre of London, at which nine streets converge on an area where traffic is controlled by traffic lights and give-way lines. It is named after the nearby Bank of England.
The equestrian statue of the Duke of Wellington is an outdoor sculpture of Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, a British soldier and statesman, located at the Royal Exchange in London. It overlooks Bank junction in the historic City of London. The sculptor was Francis Leggatt Chantrey. The statue commemorates Wellington's assistance to the City of London in ensuring a bill was passed to allow the rebuilding of London Bridge.
The statue of Charles II stands in the Figure, or Middle, Court of the Royal Hospital, Chelsea, London. The sculptor was Grinling Gibbons, and the statue was executed around 1680–1682. The king founded the Royal Hospital in 1682 as a home for retired army veterans. The statue is a Grade I listed structure.
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