Her Royal Highness Princess Alexandra opens Goldsmiths' Centre
The new Goldsmiths’ Centre was officially opened on Wednesday by Her Royal Highness (HRH) Princess Alexandra.
The purpose-built development, created by the Goldsmiths’ Company, will serve as a hub for members of the jewellery, silversmithing and allied trades, as well as for the general public.
The Goldsmiths’ Centre represents the largest ever single investment (circa £17.5 million) by the Goldsmiths’ Company in support of its craft and industry. The centre has been set up as a charitable enterprise and it will be used to help young people to enter skilled employment through vocational training, in addition to nurturing an enduring community of like-minded individuals and businesses from the industry and associated trades.
Situated in London’s Clerkenwell, an area traditionally associated with the watchmaking and silversmithing trades, the new Goldsmiths’ facility incorporates an existing Victorian grade II listed structure, one of the first London Board Schools built in 1872, combined with a new build element. This redevelopment project was made possible through the partnership with the London Development Agency (LDA), which provided the brownfield site upon which the building stands.
On her arrival at the Goldsmiths’ Centre, HRH Princess Alexandra was received by Dr Charles Goodson-Wickes, deputy lieutenant of Greater London and councillor Phil Kelly, the Mayor of Islington, who then introduced Paul Double, the City Remembrancer, Hector Miller, prime warden of the Goldsmiths’ Company, and Martin Drury chairman of the trustees, Goldsmiths’ Centre.
As part of her tour, HRH Princess Alexandra was invited to unveil a commemorative stone and was then presented with a posy.
At the end of the Royal visit Peter Taylor, director of the Goldsmiths’ Centre, said: ‘The official opening of the Centre represents the culmination of seven years of hard work put in by the project team, the Trustees and all the others who have contributed to this major initiative. We are delighted that HRH Princess Alexandra honoured us with her presence and made this an extra special day for all concerned by formally opening the Goldsmiths’ Centre.”