The Vault below the Nutshuis, The Hague

Hidden in plain sight are the obsolete vaults in old bank buildings. What do you do with them when they no longer serve their purpose? Tearing down the vault is usually out of the question, as the buildings are cultural significant and therefore protected. But you can make it in something useful again, as long the main structure remains intact.

Most bank building conversions are quite dramatic, as where others leave the vaults mostly intact. Walter send me the suggestion to show a famous geocache: GC2JV5X, van “Kluis tot Kookhuis”, this bank building is converted into a shop for high-end cookware. One of the deposit boxes in the basement is the geocache.

In this case, I wasn’t looking for a vault, but with just dumb luck I came across one while giving trainings. Specifically, I was in The Hague at the Nutshuis named after the Nutsspaarbank, this savings bank that used it as headquarters from 1921 to 1992. While staying in an old bank building is kinda crazy, the ‘nut’ in either building and bank is the Dutch word for utility.

The host was very kind and let me in the vault to take pictures, hopefully these will give you a nice insight in the 1920s vault technology. Most of the building and vault is still original, they removed most of the safe deposit boxes to make the room function in its new purpose as a movie room. To enter the vault there are originally three heavy doors of which two are prodded open and one is permanently closed.

Inside the movie Vault.

This is the door on the right side of the building. The door is heavy and impressive and clearly designed to intimidate, as it has many more locking bolts than necessary and large handle and gearing on the outside. This door has three locks: One keyed safe lock, one Chubb/Lips vault combination lock, and one Kromer time lock, similar to one I’ve in my collection.

Vault door two is less impressive looking and has a completely different style: it has a flat, unimpressive looking door with two keyed safe locks and a normal size handle. What locks they are, we can only guess at.

The third door is similar in style to the first door in the list. However, the day gate was still in place, and they removed the back cover from the safe. From the picture, we can see the same Kromer time lock and a Chubb/Lips vault combination lock.

Here are a few links I’ve promised. While the pages are largely uninspiring and the photos aren’t as clear. These will give some idea of what is out there and the hidden treasures there are to discover.

Amsterdam’s Archive: http://www.lucvandelagemaat.nl/category/voice-over/
Deventer, Carlos in huis: Furniture and living https://carlosinhuis.nl/winkel/
The Hague, Nutshuis filmkluis: https://nutshuis.nl/zaal-huren/filmkluis-en-foyer/#et_pb_dp_oc_custom_0_3
Den Bosch, Robbies concept store: https://www.verwersstraat.nl/robbies/

I’ll finish this post with a these safe deposit boxes used as props throughout the basement.

Article and pictures CCBY4.0 Jan-Willem Markus at Toool Blackbag.

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