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Sir Horace Jones

(1819—1887) architect


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(1819–97). English architect. He commenced practice in London in 1843, and designed numerous commercial buildings, before being elected Architect and Surveyor to the City of London in 1864 in succession to Bunning. He was responsible for the Central Meat Market (1866–7) and the General Market, Smithfield (1879–83—with the American ‘Phoenix’ system of rolled channelled iron columns (patented 1862) in its construction), Billingsgate Fish Market (1874–8—converted (1985–9) into offices by the Richard Rogers Partnership), and the charming Leadenhall Market (1880–2—brilliantly integrating shops and arcades into an ancient system of alleyways). In Basinghall Street he designed the former Guildhall Library and Museum (1870–2), and, to mark the site of Temple Bar, Fleet Street, he designed (1880) the memorial surmounted by a rampant bronze dragon by Charles Bell Birch (1832–93—the statues are by Sir Joseph Edgar Boehm, Bt. (1834–90)). His great twelve-sided iron-framed Council Chamber at Guildhall (1883–4) was destroyed in 1940. When, in 1877, proposals were made for a bascule bridge over the Thames at the Tower of London, Jones collaborated with the engineer (Sir) John Wolfe Wolfe-Barry (1836–1918), but the concepts of how the bridge would operate and of its architectural treatment were Jones's alone. Part suspension-bridge and part bascule, the bridge-towers which contain elevators and support the high-level footbridges (for use when the bascules were open) are of steel clad with stone, so look like Gothic city-gates with towers over. Jones and Wolfe-Barry came in for predictable denunciation for the ‘untruthfulness’ of the towers, but the Gothic garb was insisted upon by Parliament, in deference to the neighbouring Tower of London: however, what Modernist critics failed to note was that the towers were among the first steel-framed structures in London, and that the steelwork is not carried on the masonry. The bridge was completed in 1894. Jones's last important work was the former Guildhall School of Music (1885–7) on the Thames Embankment, three façades of which survive, one with pretty terracotta panels facing south to Tallis Street.

From A Dictionary of Architecture and Landscape Architecture in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Architecture.


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