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15 New Bridge Street

Fifteen New Bridge Street is a Grade II listed building situated on the Western side of New Bridge Street close to its Southern end at Blackfriars. The site has long been occupied and formed part of the Tudor Palace of Bridewell. The current building was designed and built @1770 - 1777 by five 'London gentlemen' consequent upon the new Blackfriars Bridge and the final enclosure of the silted and corrupted River Fleet. The building was extended and re-faced in the 1890's and refurbished internally in 1912 and again in the 1970s and 1980s. The latter were not very sympathetic and by 2004 the building was somewhat run down. Following a structural survey in which no major defects were identified the property was purchased and thereafter the Trust, in partnership with 15NBS, set about a programme of careful refurbishment and decoration.

14 & 15 New Bridge St. December 2004

Detail of stonework

Planned improvements, 1890

It is an imposing stone-built property with a classical frontage comprising a lower-ground, ground, first, second, third and fourth floors, there is a small front yard adjoining the lower ground floor with brick-lined cellars under the road and iron railings line the pavement-frontage with gated access to the yard. At the rear there is an enclosed private courtyard formed by the surrounding buildings. There is a balcony running the length of the first floor supported on carved stone buttresses and large sash windows and French doors to all floors. Double-fronted mahogany doors are approached by steps with stone balustrades and carved pillars. The entrance is flanked by carved stone panels and there is a fanlight above. There are several such panels on the property with scrolls, swags, oval plaques and lion-heads. These improvements all date from the 1890s when the premises were occupied by the Rock Life Assurance Co.

A great deal of time was spent designing and creating the new reception-room taking the colour and thematic cues from a painting of Westminster & the Thames by Ashley Shaw. The design remit was to provide a welcoming, relaxing and sophisticated reception and waiting room. The result is a refined, uncluttered, contemporary and professional reception room.

Reception 2004

Reception 2004

Restored plasterwork

The principal ground floor office now houses the modern and fully networked Clerks Room. Like all the offices this has been refurbished to the highest standard. The furniture and storage here and throughout the building admit the sequence of dark-grey flooring through lighter colours to the bright ceiling giving a well-lit but comfortable work-environment. The progression from Classical exterior through the Art-Deco/contemporary inspired reception to the high-tech clerks’ room is deliberate and positive. It encompasses all that the building and the Chambers are, modern and progressive but mindful of history and its value.

All the floors occupied by 15 NBS have been renovated. Walls have been repositioned to provide proper office-space and regaining the historical shape of the interior. Modern electrical and data networks have been installed and, most of the lighting has passive infra-red switching to conserve energy. Existing mouldings have been repaired and where required new mouldings commissioned. It has been particularly pleasing to renovate the beautiful marble fireplaces and return each to its proper place at the centre of the room. Original features which could not be incorporated into the offices have been recorded and covered to preserve their integrity. Finally, the refurbished basement now houses the IT/comms-room, dedicated conference and video-conference room, seminar room and fully fitted kitchen. Below are just some examples of the work environment now enjoyed by members of chambers.

New Chambers

New Chambers

Clerking 2004



Updated 05 April 2007
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