Charles Henry Driver
Charles Henry Driver (1832–1900) was a significant British architect of the Victorian era, with a reputation for pioneering use of ornamental iron work for which he was seen as a leading authority. He was also an expert in its casting and manufacture. He consulted in this area for Joseph Paxton on The Crystal Palace project as part of the Great Exhibition of 1851 in Hyde Park, London. On this project he designed the Orangery and the Aquarium. He also pioneered the use of ornamental tile work in industrial interiors.
Working with the engineer Joseph Bazalgette on the massive construction of the London sewerage system, he completed the architectural design for the Thames Embankment and the great pumping houses at Abbey Mills and Crossness, which were decorative temples to Victorian engineering and steam power.
Other work includes piers at Llandudno, Nice, and Southend-on-Sea. From 1865 he worked with R.J. Hood on many of the railway stations on the London, Brighton and South Coast Railway, including the London Bridge terminus. There are also many other railways projects across England and South America, plus individual buildings of importance, such as Dorking Town Hall.
He also painted oils and water colour pictures some of which survive.
He died on 27 October 1900 and is buried in West Norwood Cemetery, leaving an estate of about one million pounds, a massive sum.
- Paul Dobraszczyk, writing in the Architectural History journal, 2006.