By Jennifer Adam, Curator of the Bank of England Museum
An exhibition in the Bank of England Museum showcases a series of drawings of the Bank of England’s Printing Works from 1957, the year after it opened for production. The Bank of England’s Printing Works at Debden, Essex, opened for business in March 1956. This was a landmark moment for the Bank. The spectacular new Production Hall accommodated the whole production line for the first time, creating a dramatic improvement in efficiency, security and working conditions compared to the old St Luke’s Printing Works at Old Street.
To commemorate the move, the Bank of England commissioned artist Feliks Topolski to capture scenes of the new Printing Works in operation. This new exhibition displays Topolski’s drawings and paintings together within the Bank for the first time. As a group, they form a compelling and engaging record — not just of the process of making money, but of the staff who carried out the work, and of the building itself.