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The five-storey townhouse at 148 New Bond Street has been the home of FAS since 1876, but as rents and business rates have risen in the area, the company has decided to find a cheaper location elsewhere in the capital ahead of its rent review next summer.

Pippa Stockdale, who joined the company in 2015, said it is “very early days and we are weighing up options”.

FAS focuses on British art and design from 1700 to the present day and also operates a gallery in Dundas Street in Edinburgh’s New Town.

Gordon Cooke, FAS director, retired last year after 20 years at the gallery.

The Bond Street premises, purpose-built as an art gallery, had a new entrance designed by EW Godwin (1833–86) in 1881.