The Illustrated London News, the world’s first illustrated newspaper, debuted in 1842. Over the decades, the publishers expanded into the ‘great 8’ titles: Sketch, Sphere, Tatler, Graphic, Bystander, Illustrated Sporting and Dramatic News, and Britannia and Eve. In 1928, the Illustrated London News published an illustration of the interior of their own offices at Inveresk House, ‘a hive of journalistic industry’.
In the image, you can see the offices of the individual editors for the various publications, the advertising managers, secretaries, and accountants, as well as the boardroom. At street level, there was a Lloyd’s Bank and shop. Below street level, you can see the restaurant and then the storerooms.
We are going to break the image up into six parts so we can take a closer look at the inner workings of the Illustrated London News. Beginning with the top half of the building and then the bottom half. Click each image to enlarge it.
The caption explains more about the construction of the building. ‘In the glass partitions are 20,533 feet of glass, and the plywood used in partitions amounts to 29,763 feet. Sixteen tons of debris were removed in the process of reconstruction, and two new floors were added. There are 89,750 feet of electric wiring in the building, and 220 locks, with every key differing from the other; yet there is one master key which passes everywhere. 1122 yards of material were used in packing the partitions (to make the building fireproof). Two great water-tanks on the roof hold 10,000 gallons.’
Today, the building is home to the One Aldwych Boutique Hotel. The independent hotel first opened in 1998. Even with extensive renovation to the interior, the exterior of the building still retains its excellent Edwardian style.