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British Industrial History

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Royal Panopticon of Science and Art

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of Leicester Square, London

The Royal Panopticon of Science and Art was one of the grand social institutions and architectural splendours of Victorian London. It was given a Royal Charter in 1850 and in July 1851 a lease was taken out on a premium site for 60 years and building commenced on the eastern side of Leicester Square.

The proprietor was the former electrical instrument maker Edward M. Clarke.

1854 The Royal Panopticon of Science and Art was opened on 18 March. Henry Minchin Noad was appointed instructor in chemistry.

1856 Two years after opening the amateur science panopticon project closed and the building was sold. The grand building re-opened as the Alhambra Theatre of Variety.

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