Reply To: Arnotts
Indeed Clerys is often touted as the oldest dep store in the world, the first to market shopping as a leisure activity.
They achieved it by containing many departments under one, very lavish roof. Suppose the first shopping centre as well.
An indication of the modernity of the building were the large plate glass display windows on the ground floor, which were unheard of in this country at the time, and must have been prohibitively expensive in 1851-53.
The Mansion House is otherwise the earliest example of the use of such glass I’ve come across in the city, dating from around the same time.
The mystery of Arnotts lives on.
What’s very wierd about the design on the bag is how unsymmetrical the building is – the wing on the left after the tower is 5 bays long, while on the right it’s only 3 bays, why aren’t they balanced out with four on either side?
And over the pilasters J. Seerski mentions are magnificently carved capitals, laden with all sorts of foliage etc, sadly obscured by the canopy.
Does anyone know of the trademark green railings inside are original, I’ve never been sure – they look decidedly Stephens Green Centreish. Then again, their railings are pretty good repros.