At the end of March, the GAI is relocating to an office within Ironmongers’ Hall, the home of the Worshipful Company of Ironmongers.
One of the Great XII livery companies of the City of London and with its roots in the iron and ironmongery trades for over 700 years, the official history of the Ironmongers’ Company dates to its royal charter of 1463. After its Hall in Fenchurch Street had been badly damaged by bombing in 1917, the business moved to a new site in Shaftesbury Place, Aldersgate Street in 1925. The new Hall had been designed by its surveyor, Sydney Tatchell FRIBA.
The Hall is a neo-Tudor and Jacobean building surrounded by the 1970s architecture of the Barbican and the Museum of London – quite a contrast! It has featured in film and on television and is also a popular venue for weddings and corporate events.
Mario Del-Signore, GAI President, said: “I am very pleased to have led this move, which is designed to strengthen our links to the Worshipful Company of Ironmongers, benefiting both the Guild and the Ironmongers’ Company. Our old offices in Shoreditch were too large for our needs, so by taking this opportunity to reduce our office space we have both saved money and aligned ourselves with this great and historic institution. Our plan is to hold some of our Guild meetings and events in this amazing space, and we look forward to welcoming members to our new home in the months and years ahead.”
Colonel Charlie Knaggs OBE, Clerk to the Ironmongers’ Company, said: “The Company started life as a body to raise and maintain standards for the ironmongery trade, to train and educate tradesmen and their clients, and to ensure the Company and its membership thrived. Whilst our focus has now shifted to mainly charitable aims, we are very pleased to see GAI taking up this mantle and delighted to welcome it and its members to the ‘ancestral home’ of the ironmongery industry.”
The change means new contact details and phone numbers for the Guild: gai.org.uk; Tel: 020 3370 8540.
To see the Hall’s amazing interior, visit ironmongers.org