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Goldsmiths College Lewisham
Summary: Goldsmiths College was formerly the Royal Naval School, which was opened by Prince Albert in 1843. It was built by John Shaw the Younger in 1843-45 who also designed the chapel in 1853. In 1891 the Goldsmiths' Company purchased the building and founded its own Technical and Recreative Institute here. In 1904 the site and its buildings were presented to the University of London. It was badly bombed in WWII. The campus buildings are set within grounds that have one main green space, College Green, a rectangular lawn with the rear of the Richard Hoggart Building on the north-east side, and new buildings to the west and south-west, down to tennis courts.
Previous / Other name: The Goldsmith's Company's Technical and Recreative Institute
Site location: Lewisham Way, New Cross
Postcode: SE14 > Google Map
Type of site: Institutional Grounds
Date(s): 1843
Listed structures: LBII: Main building
Borough: Lewisham
Site ownership: University of London Goldsmiths College
Site management: University of London Goldsmiths College
Open to public? No
Opening times: private
Special conditions:
Public transport: Rail/London Overground: New Cross, New Cross Gate
The information shown above was correct at the time of the last update 01/02/2012
Please check with the site owner or manager for latest news.

Fuller information:

The Royal Naval School began as a school for the sons of 'impecunious naval officers', which had been founded in Camberwell in 1833 before moving to New Cross, where it remained until 1889 then moving again to Chislehurst. The Goldsmiths' Company had received its first charter in 1327 and became one of the wealthiest and most powerful of the city livery companies. The new Goldsmiths College provided courses for students preparing for external degrees in engineering and science at the University of London, and also ran art and music classes. A south block was added to the main building by Sir Reginald Blomfield, which is now named the Richard Hoggart Building. This overlooks College Green, which has six large plane trees and a number of horse chestnuts around the perimeter, with recent planting of commemorative trees. In the north-east corner is a modern raised garden with C19th urns and other architectural fragments. The botanical gardens of the former Biology Department in St James Street at one time contained rare trees, shrubs and perennials, but was closed in the 1960s.

Sources consulted:

corr. N Mahoney to D Lambert 1992 re botanical department; Bridget Cherry & Nikolaus Pevsner, The Buildings of England: London 2: South (Penguin) 1999; Ben Weinreb & Christopher Hibbert, 'The London Encyclopaedia' (Macmillan, revised ed. 1993).
Grid ref: TQ365768
Size in hectares: 5.67
On EH National Register : No
EH grade:
Site on EH Heritage at Risk list:
Registered common or village green
on Commons Registration Act 1965:
Protected under London Squares
Preservation Act 1931:
The information below is taken from the relevant Local Authority's planning legislation, which was correct at the time of research but may have been amended in the interim. Please check with the Local Authority for latest planning information.
On Local List:
In Conservation Area: No
Conservation Area name:
Tree Preservation Order: Not known
Nature Conservation Area: No
Green Belt: No
Metropolitan Open Land: No
Special Policy Area: Yes - Area of Archaeological Priority
Other LA designation: Urban Green Space

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