List entry

List entry Summary

This building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest.

Name: BLYTHE HOUSE (FORMER POST OFFICE SAVINGS BANK HEADQUARTERS) AND PORTER'S LODGE AND LAMP STANDARDS AND BOUNDARY WALLS AND GATES AND RAILINGS TO THE NORTH OF BLYTHE HOUSE

List entry Number: 1390961

Location

BLYTHE HOUSE (FORMER POST OFFICE SAVINGS BANK HEADQUARTERS) AND PORTER'S LODGE AND LAMP STANDARDS AND BOUNDARY WALLS AND GATES AND RAILINGS TO THE NORTH OF BLYTHE HOUSE, 23, BLYTHE ROAD

The building may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County District District Type Parish
Greater London AuthorityHammersmith and FulhamLondon Borough

National Park: Not applicable to this List entry.

Grade: II

Date first listed: 05-Aug-2004

Date of most recent amendment: Not applicable to this List entry.

Legacy System Information

The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System: LBS

UID: 491219

Asset Groupings

This list entry does not comprise part of an Asset Grouping. Asset Groupings are not part of the official record but are added later for information.

List entry Description

Summary of Building

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Reasons for Designation

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History

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Details

333/0/10085 BLYTHE ROAD 05-AUG-04 23 Blythe House (Former Post Office Savings Bank Headquarters)and Porter's Lodge, lamp standards boundary walls, gates and railings to the north of Blythe House II Government offices built to be the headquarters of the Post Office Savings Bank, now a museums' store. 1899-1903, to designs prepared under (Sir) Henry Tanner in the Office of Works. Blythe House is a massive building that towers above and dominates its locality. Pinkish-red brick, Portland-stone dressings, flat roofs. Four storeys, attics and semi-basements. Long north and south ranges linked by two cross ranges. East range, always intended, added 1920-2; answering west range never built. Symmetrical 25-bay north front with forward projecting centre and ends. 'Wrenaissance' enrichment, flourish concentrated in central five bays with a heavily rusticated triple entrance arch and a clock under an eyebrow pediment. Twin stone open towers. South and inner ranges much plainer. Link ranges incorporate mezzanines. Across central courtyard a timber and glass enclosed walkway with cast-iron columns joins the south (female) ends of link ranges. Outer courts faced with white-glazed bricks. Sash windows throughout, often paired in mullioned and transomed openings. Cast-iron area railings with Art Nouveau detailing. Internally steel framed with hollow-cylindrical cast-iron columns and breeze-concrete filler floors. The building provided accommodation for 4,000 staff, of whom more than 1,000 were women, rigidly separated from men in a north-south division. It was electrified throughout with its own generators powering 11,000 lamps, printing machinery and both passenger and goods lifts. The site's chimney, centred to the south and decoratively treated as a campanile, is included. The principal significance of Blythe House is its historical importance as the former headquarters of the Post Office Savings Bank, a major public institution that in 1902 had 12,000 branches and more than 9 million accounts, in a population of about 35 million. Of these accounts working-class people held about 80%. Among the largest government building projects of the late Victorian and Edwardian period, these offices embodied both a proto-socialist paternalistic state and a step towards the democratisation of wealth in Imperial Britain. Blythe House is also an imposing building with considerable local presence.

Boundary walls, piers, arches and porter's lodge, cast-iron gates, railings and lamp standards. 1899-1903, to designs prepared under (Sir) Henry Tanner in the Office of Works. Portland-stone piers, arches, lodge and dwarf walls. Iron gates, railings and lamp standards, largely cast with some wrought detail. Together enclosing the forecourt along the main Blythe Road front of Blythe House, these features are strongly articulated in an Edwardian Baroque style, central emphasis coming from the lodge and an answering pilastered and banded arch flanking the central banded piers which support lamps. Outer piers also banded with ball finials. Included for group value.

Selected Sources

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details

National Grid Reference: TQ 24108 79010

Map

© Crown Copyright and database right 2012. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100019088.
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This copy shows the entry on 16-Apr-2014 at 02:09:13.