24 March 2017 | 7 °C

London Timewarp #3

M@
By M@ Last edited 122 months ago
London Timewarp #3

A scene that changed forever 66 years ago today...

stpaulslookingeast.jpg

Imagine that you're standing in St Paul's Churchyard, across the road from Peter's Hill - the somehow unsatisfying approach route to the no-longer-wobbly bridge. Looking East along Cannon Street there's little to see these days. Modern buildings line that most soul-less of City roads, while a windswept coach park takes up the foreground. The older shot, from 1908, contains a rather special, drum-shaped building, which was levelled in an air-raid 66 years ago today, along with several other buildings in the area. However, its footprint can still be seen, preserved in the shape of the small park shown in the modern photo.

The 'church' to the left is St Augustine, Watling Street, built by a Hawksmoor-Wren tag-team. This too was heavily damaged in the war. The partly rebuilt tower, now isolated from Watling Street and sporting a fibreglass pinnacle tower, forms part of St Paul's Choir School.

The buildings on Cannon Street (right) have been replaced with surprisingly similar counterparts in a more modern style. The brown brick building is Bracken House, former home of the Financial TImes. This is worth checking out for a wholly unexpected feature above the main entrance (not visible in photo): an astronimical clock centered around the gurning countenance of Winston Churchill, who is seen depicted as some kind of pagan sun god. The mind boggles.

Last Updated 11 January 2007

Molly

For a real London timewarp, go to Oxford Circus tube - in the corridor heading towards the Bakerloo/Victoria lines, they've stripped all the ads away, as far back as 1993. There's now an ad up for Erasure's Wild! album and a Virgin Megastore ad featuring Suede's Coming Up. It's really cool.