The Royal Exchange

The original Royal Exchange was established by Sir Thomas Gresham as London’s first purpose built centre for trading stocks. Opened by Queen Elizabeth 1 in 1571 awarding its royal title. The building was destroyed in the Great Fire of London in 1666 and replaced 3 years later by a baroque style building, only to be razed to the ground for second time by fire in 1838.

Stone Edge Conservation successfully tendered for both phases of the external refurbishment works which were undertaken between 2019 and 2020.

Sited in the heart of the city’s square mile adjacent to the Bank of England and directly outside Bank tube station, this bustling location posed numerous logistical challenges. Extensive planning and coordination with the City of London authority took place long before a scaffold standard was erected, added to the mix was the requirement for the works to be fully completed prior to the Lord Mayor’s show.

The works were undertaken whilst the building was in full occupation with high end shops and eateries within the main hall of the Exchange. The façades were sympathetically cleaned utilising the DOFF system and extensive masonry repairs were undertaken to remove the corroding metal cramps.

Works were also undertaken to the gilded weathervane, unusually shaped like a grasshopper which was the personal emblem of Tudor financier Sir Thomas Gresham who founded the first Royal Exchange in 1565.

The Royal Exchange