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not able to call to mind. Mr. Truefitt has made some in which, by a projection of the roof and other devices, greater novelty, yet consistency of character, was produced than we have seen in many cases. Mr. R.S. Potter, also, lately exhibited a drawing, showing a tower and spire over the porch, where an effective massiveness was obtained, and the frequent discordant junction of parts, culled from church towers and porches, was avoided. In the Episcopal chapel in the Rochdale Cemetery, Mr. R. M. Smith has given his design somewhat the character of the Norman style. The building consists of a square tower, with a pyramidal crocketed roof, between a short galilee, or nave, and a chancel,-the principal effect of the interior being given by the two arches carrying the tower above.
Notes of a few works in the department of sanitary economy chiefly separate buildings—we reserve for another section. The whole question of sanitary improvement is of vast extent, and is one which is just now of such importance, that although we have given to it more than usual space, we feel as though it had been dismissed summarily. Especially does the question of the provision of healthful and comfortable places of abode, meet us before every step that we would take towards social amelioration. We are concerned to think that, year after year, our chronicle of progress can show so little done by such means, connected as they must be with the removal of what now most loudly demands attention in the records of crime, and reports of the police courts. Houses and streets both, in districts which were the chief resort of disease, such as the district near Golden Square, still remain in the state in which they were. And we do not hesitate to say that, whilst we attach no mean value to the improveinent of drainage and water supply, to ventilation, and still more to the better internal distribution of all the accessories of a residence, we believe that even the absence of ordinary art in the character of houses, may have something to do with that state of mind and frame which invites the attacks of disease. At least, this argument has Jately been put forward with reference to the district we have mentioned. We should here not omit to speak of the aid given through the columns of The Builder to the sanitary cause, and especially to the subject of dwellings. By Mr. Godwin's personal investigations, and by the manner in which he has set the facts before the public, there is now no reason why the condition of the inhabitants of London should be known only to a limited number of philanthropic persons. The Metropolitan Association, and the Society to which Mr. Henry Roberts has so long rendered his arduous and disinterested assistance, can do little to cope with that which makes, at once, the great evil in London house-building, and in London life and morals. The Society last referred to bas of late given its chief attention to the remodelling of existing tenements. Wild Court, Great Wild Street, before the operations of the Society, had been in a condition which it had required all the force of description, and of drawings, to convey an idea of. The houses were filled with heaps of ordure and putrifying refuse; and the requisites in dwellings, usually thought indispensable, were wanting. The rents were high; but the houses were crowded with inhabitants, more or less nomadic in habits, and cultivated on the descending scale of surrounding influences. For the poor must live somewhere; and the sooner this very simple and easy fact is brought to the knowledge of persons who seem to ignore it, the better for the diminution of misery and crime which herd with it, and are developed by it. The houses in question, 13 in number, have now been remodelled at a cost of 20001.; drainage, water supply, and ventilation, have been properly attended to; and a water-closet, in an open gallery, is provided for each floor. About the end of last July, we found that ninety-two rooms were occupied by eighty-three families, at rents varying from ls. 3d. to 3s. per week, each room. The rules which it is necessary to impose upon tenants, we should say, require very careful consideration, lest they provoke prejudices which would defeat the object. There should be no interference, except where necessary for protection of property, and the comfort of other tenants. The regulation in Wild Court, against pasting pictures on the walls, seems to us far from desirable, and a positive denial of what may be means of intellectual culture. Rooms, in property of this description, are of course prepared with the expectation of some such usage. But, to secure all the advantages of well-ordered dwellings, new buildings are necessary ; and the external gallery system should be brought into use.--In some of the provincial towns, new model dwellings, however, have been erected. Some at Dudley, of which Mr. Wiggington was the architect, are amongst the most recent.--In Manchester, whether from over-speculation or other causes, the number of empty houses has been increasing. In September last, it was stated in a speech by Mr. Bright, that the number of such houses was that year 7,000, the number in 1854 having been 6,000, and in the year before that, 5,000.
3. STREET ARCHITECTURE AND IMPROVEMENTS; PARKS, &c.
Looking at the growth of the metropolis, we find little this year that would call for particular remark. In some of the suburbs, the progress of house-building has been comparatively less than of late years, the change being attributed to the effects of the war.
In the matter of new lincs of street, nothing fresh has been done; and the information which we received last year, as to the extension of Farringdon-street has turned out to be fallacious. Quite recently, however, it seems to have become apparent to the City authorities, that it would be better to borrow money, even at high rates of interest, than to leave what might be valuable building-plots longer unoccupied.
The line of buildings in Cannon-street may now be considered as complete, only a small portion of a block remaining to be erected. The latest structure, next to the warehouse of Messrs. Cook, Son, and Co., in St. Paul's Churchyard, follows many of the details of that, and the other buildings. Whilst we saw an improved character of architecture in the earlier buildings of this line, we must now regret that it has not been felt that novelty is an object to which importance should be constantly attached. The triangular space next St. Paul's is yet unencumbered, and though projects have been
put forward for covering it with buildings, Mr. Tite has felt himself justified in asserting lately his belief that the view of the cathedral will not be sacrificed. In Cornhill, an opening has been made to St. Michael's Church, by which the whole height of the tower is seen. The effect is hardly equal to what might have been supposed by admirers of Wren's works. The appearance of the lower portion of the tower from a distance, could hardly have been calculated upon by the architect. The narrow thoroughfare-Chancery-lane-has been somewhat amended by setting back a few of the houses at the south end, and by the erection of new buildings of very improved character. The old Mitre Tavern, formerly on the site adjoining the new tavern, was said to have been once the residence of Izaak Walton. Fetter-lane is still unfinished. Any such alterations, however, would be minor instalments of that improvement of the metropolitan thoroughfares, which is becoming hourly more and more imperative. The countless throng of persons every day brought to the small area of the City proper; the passing to and from railways, warehouses, and docks, of all kinds of vehicles; the narrowness of some of the chief thoronghfares, and the badly-planned lines of many of them, with the crowded state of the few bridges available, are beginning to be matters of serious moment. A Committee was appointed in the last session of Parliament, to investigate the subject of metropolitan communications; and a report has lately appeared, illustrated with plans of many different schemes,—the improvement of the riverside, so much connected with the diversion of the sewage-being amongst objects in view. Amongst the schemes, some attention has been excited by one emanating from Sir Joseph Paxton. It comprises a girdle railway, so to speak--passing over 103 miles of ground, with bridges across the Thames--and a line intersecting the centre of the metropolis, of 11 miles in length, running generally east and west, but crossing the river near Hungerford-bridge. The construction was proposed to be that of a building resembling the transept of the Exhibition Building of 1851; and this was to include carriage-way, foot-ways, and lines of railway. Houses were to open on to the line. The total expense was estimated at 34,000,0001., and it was urged, that if other means failed, the Government ought to guarantee a rate of interest,—the belief being, that through the want of some such guarantee, capital which often might be employed advantageously in English works, was driven to seek investment in other countries where such guarantee was offered, and with no loss therefrom to the governments.
The market is now removed from Smithfield, and it remains a question what would be the best means of disposing of this valuable space. The old prison of the Compter, hard by, has been taken down during the course of the year. Considerable activity in building operations prevails in the City; and every step indicates progress as to design, and greater regard paid to the advantage of materials durable and truthful, and auxiliary to real art. There is, perhaps, as to the appearance of breadth of base in buildings, a tendency to overstep certain limits—arising from the constant problem as to the admission of a large amount of light in a confined situation. But,
the manner in which the problem is solved is often the occasion for imparting the very qualities of original art, which are the highest; and the result is, that there is much in the recent architecture of the City, which deserves the attention of architects practising in other parts of the metropolis.
But, in all circumstances as to the great demand made of late in the architecture of places of business, and in the manner in which it has been supplied both in the metropolis and the leading towns of the north, there is that evidence of advancement at which we have felt so much gratified; and the increase of public companies, from the direction which legislation is taking, will probably continue favourable to architecture. Private speculations, however, are made opportunities for similar display of taste. In Manchester, the progress still observable in architecture, as applied to the large emporiums of manufactures, which the works of Mr. Walters continue to illustrate, is surprising to those who may recollect the appearance of the town fifteen or twenty years ago. Liverpool, if we may judge from a report of an address lately made by the Presi. dent of the local Architectural Society, is advancing, but hardly to the same extent. “Piles of offices,” we read, “ are springing up;". but, “although in an architectural point of view they are an advance upon those of former years,” he says, “I must confess we are in the rear of that architectural expression given to similar places of business in the metropolis and other mercantile cities. Our warehouses present the same disregard to the beauty of form and common-sense construction as they have hitherto done, excepting those erected under the able directions and superintendence of our dock surveyor." This, however, we have reason to think, would convey an idea of the architecture of Liverpool not equal to the merits. — There is a marked local character in later works in the town—an impress from the Greek school upon the general Italian-doubtless due, in great part, to the example of St. George's Hall. Professor Cockerell, also, who some years since executed one of the principal buildings, adopts usually a similar manner. At Newcastle, the new buildings have been in progress which were rendered necessary by the disastrous calamity in the latter part of 1854. • What are called "improvements” lead to the destruction of interesting old buildings more frequently than necessary. A house at Greenwich, sometimes called the Old Palace, or Crowley House, well known from illustrations, has been taken down ; and the picturesque Town-hall at Leominster, a half-timbered structure, has been sold by auction, preparatory to removal ; it may, however, be rebuilt at Hampton Court.
The public statues erected during the last few years have been as numerous in England, perhaps, as on the Continent; and it has been out of our power to allude to each instance. The Manchester Wellington Monument, by Mr. Noble, is one of the last completed. The hero is represented in ordinary costume, on a tall pedestal, at the base of which are grouped accessory figures. At the same town, the bronze statue of Dalton, by W. Theed, has been completed and fixed. It is placed on an angle pedestal, in the parapet wall separating the public esplanade from the grounds of the Infirmary, and is a copy, on a somewhat larger scale, of a marble statue by Chantrey in the Royal Institution at the same town. This principle, in works of sculpture-here carried out on the instructions of the Committee -is not a judicious one,--and not merely because the value of a new work is comparatively little, if it cannot be viewed as a work of mind (which surely every public monument should be), but because it is by no means clear that the rules of art as to properties of materials—referred to some pages back-do not apply as much to sculpture as to architecture and decorative art. The antique sculpture in bronze is always very different in treatment to the sculpture in marble. Proportions and details can be fashioned in the one case, which would be beyond the limits of a friable material ; and these opportunities, according to all sound principles of art, are to be accepted, not passed by. Moreover, a comparative lightness of character affords the justification that is really required, for the use of a material the colour of which has some heaviness, and we believe it is to mistakes of the kind referred to, as much as the ungainliness of modern costume, that the somewhat unfortunate result in recent works—such as the statue of Sir Robert Peel, lately placed at the west end of Cheapside—is due. We are therefore disposed to suggest to the authorities at Manchester, that they should hesitate before carrying out an intention, lately expressed, of makingļa statue of Watt (proposed to be placed in a corresponding position to that of the Dalton statue) a copy of the marble statue in Westminster Abbey.-The statue of Sir Robert Peel just mentioned fails in another important particular. It is no exception to the common error in our public statues, of caring little about the accessories and the pedestal. There should in all cases be a proper area of platform slightly raised above the general ground ; and if the latter ascend to the statue, it is better. Then, with subordinate objects at the angles, and some degree of design and decoration in the pedestal itself, not only does the whole become a satisfactory public monument, but the work of the sculptor culminates to its due effect; whereas, a common system is to taķe no thought about the pedestal,—to set it down where the ground is perhaps lower than that around, and to finish with an ugly railing and four strect-lamps. Just where the pudule lies thickest in what is best known as Pigtail-place, there is such a monument; and whilst many a West-end passenger has cracked his joke at the figure on horseback, it does not seem to have occurred to any one, that much of the dissatisfaction felt, was traceable to our habitual manner of turning out in the streets what we mean for public monuments. The statue in Cheapside is just now disfigured by lamps of special ugliness, and the obstruction of a railing is spoken of.—Before leaving the streets, we may mention that a number of what are called “pillar letter-boxes " have been set up, but they have little to recommend them in design. They are oblong on the plan,” being set so as to take up little width on the footway. On the sides are painted par- ticulars of postal arrangements, and at the top is a large round ball.