On the afternoon of Thursday, 6 September a party of Apprentices visited Lloyd’s of London, the world’s leading insurance market, which occupies a purpose-built building in the heart of the City of London designed by the architect Richard Rogers that was opened in 1986. It is a leading example of Bowellism architecture in which the services for the building, such as ducts and lifts, are located on the exterior to maximise the interior space. In 2011, twenty- five years after completion, the building received a Grade I listing and was the youngest structure ever to obtain this status.
The visit was facilitated by Freeman and former Apprentice Patrick Torrie-Allen who now works in the Lloyd’s building. The party (see photo), pictured in the Adams Room on the top floor of the building, comprised Apprentices (from l to r) Liam Callender, Dan Hadfield, Owen Baldwin-Evans, Sophie Smith, Luke Wheeler, Jenna Reid, Wunmi Adeyemi, Tour Guide Tim Gould, James Fox, Nabil Laasid, Owen Gosling, and Honorary Court Assistant Roy Penrose. The Group was also accompanied by Honorary Court Assistant Andrew Knights (who took the photo).
This private tour was led by Lloyd’s guide and former Lloyd’s broker Tim Gould which covered the main areas of the building and provided a detailed history of the development of Lloyd’s from its commencement in 1668 in Edward Lloyd’s coffee shop, which became recognised as the place for obtaining marine insurance. through successive moves to its current premises in 1986.
The building consists of three main towers and three service towers around a central, rectangular space. Its core is the large Underwriting Room on the ground floor, which houses the Lutine Bell within the Rostrum. Also on the first floor is the current Loss Book into which significant losses over 300 years have been entered with, and still are, a traditional ink quill. The Underwriting Room (often simply called "the Room") is overlooked by galleries, forming a 60 metre (197 ft) high atrium lit naturally through a huge barrel- vaulted glass roof.
The 11th floor houses the Committee Room (also known as the Adam Room), an 18th- century dining room designed for the 2nd Earl of Shelburne by Robert Adam in 1763; it was transferred piece by piece from the previous (1958) Lloyd's building across the road at 51 Lime Street.
This was a really interesting Apprentice visit that will be worth repeating in the future.