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Closed 01/07/2022
The Georgian Group

The London Custom House

The Georgian Group is fundraising towards the costs of the Public Inquiry into the future of The London Custom House. Help us save this great Georgian public building from inappropriate development.
raised of £10,000 target
by 81 supporters
Donations cannot currently be made to this page
Closed on 01/07/2022
RCN 209934


A stone's throw from the Tower of London, The London Custom House is one of the city's best kept architectural secrets. Formerly the home of HMRC (the tax man}, the building and its river quayside have been closed to visitors for many years. We believe that current proposals to convert the building to a hotel will badly damage it and allow only very limited and uncertain public access. The case will be determined at Public Inquiry later this month. The Georgian Group will be there to fight for a better future for the building.

Designed by David Laing, Sir John Soanes pupil, and Robert Smirke, the architect of the British Museum, the Custom House is a spectacular neo-classical building and a very rare survival of a purpose-built Georgian office, in its heyday housing some 2,000 customs officials. At the centre of Britains story as a great maritime power and trading nation, it was here, and in earlier customs houses on the site, that contraband was offloaded and stored for safekeeping. In addition to its impressive faade to the Pool of London, its architectural glories include: the massive Long Room on the first floor, the (early) fireproof vaulted warehouses on lower floors, a ceremonial Robing Room, a superb Tidewaiters Room, grand staircases, and fine Regency details such as fireplaces, panelling and plasterwork.

The Georgian Group will demonstrate at the Inquiry why the developers scheme is not the right one and will instead propose a viable alternative which would bring real heritage and genuine public benefits, allowing the revitalisation of this key city centre site.

The costs of defending this great building at Public Inquiry and proposing a better alternative are considerable and we ask for your support. All donations to this cause, whether large or small, would be very gratefully received.

About the charity

The Georgian Group

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RCN 209934
The Georgian Group is a heritage conservation charity founded in 1937 to protect and promote buildings and landscapes of the Georgian period. As a national amenity society it is a statutory consultee in the planning process in England and Wales.

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