| The Royal School of (Art) Needlework was founded in 1872 in Sloane Street and in 1874 it leased from the Commissioners the former Belgian Galleries in Exhibition Road. In 1892 the President of the School, H.R.H. Princess Christian of Schleswig-Holstein, requested the grant of a site on the Commissioners' estate for a permanent building. Delays over funding were finally resolved by a loan from the Commissioners and by an agreement to underlet part of the new building, designed by Fairfax B. Wade, to the City and Guilds. The other tenant was the School of Art Wood Carving. The School of Needlework was granted a 999 year lease in 1901.
In 1934 the School transferred to Imperial College the lease of its building, part of which had been rented since 1901 by the College's Engineering Department (City and Guilds) and which had proved inadequate for its need for expansion. This enabled the School of Needlework to reduce its overhead expenses while retaining sufficient accommodation, sub-leased from Imperial College for 15 years. Imperial College took over the entire building in 1949 and the School moved to smaller premises in Prince's Gate.