24 April 2017 | 10 °C

Where To See The Berlin Wall In London

Where To See The Berlin Wall In London
Photo by Matt Brown.

If you've ever thought, 'London's got a bit of everything, really' here's another thing to add credence to that idea; you can see a genuine slice of the Berlin Wall while you're pottering about in London.

Outside the Imperial War Museum

There's a segment of the wall in the Geraldine Mary Harmsworth Park, outside the Imperial War Museum.

Photo by helenoftheways.

The section, made of concrete and steel, was taken from the Leuschnerdamm in the Kreuzberg district of Berlin. It was acquired by the Imperial War Museum in 1991, two years after the wall fell.

It is painted with graffiti, including a grotesque, distorted face in outline, with its mouth open. Over the red mouth are the words 'Change your life.'

The graffiti is attributed to the artist 'Indiano'.

Photo by Terry Moran.

Outside the US Embassy in London

There's a second fragment of the Berlin Wall near the bronze Ronal Reagan statue outside the US Embassy in Grosvenor Square in Mayfair.

Statue of Ronald Reagan, Grosvenor Square W1. Photo shared under wikicommons licence.

This remnant of the wall, smooth and graffiti-free is recorded as coming  from the 'east side'.

It's mounted in a 'window' on a bronze plaque, which commemorates the role Reagan played in the coming down of the wall.

The plaque for the Ronald Reagan statue at the US Embassy London, incorporates part of the Berlin Wall. Photo shared under wikicommons licence.

The rather verbose plaque also features quotes from President Reagan – including the famous line from his 1987 Brandenburg Gate speech, "Mr Gorbachev, open this gate. Mr Gorbachev, tear down this wall."

About the Berlin Wall

The Berlin Wall was a barrier that divided the city of Berlin from 1961 to 1989; it came to symbolise the Iron Curtain that separated Western Europe and the Eastern Bloc during the Cold War.

Despite GDR propaganda, the wall was actually built to keep East Germans in and not West Germans out; one estimate suggests that between September 1945 and December 1965, East Germany lost more than 2 million citizens.  

192 people are known to have died in attempts to cross either the Wall or the frontier obstacles; there's a chance that the actual figure is higher.

You can read a thorough history of the wall on the Imperial War Museum website.

Other Berlin Wall Segments in London

There are also sections of the Berlin War in the collections at the National Army Museum.

A third segment stands near the sports hall at The German School London in Petersham, Richmond.

With thanks to London Remembers for alerting us to the Reagan statue's fragment.

Last Updated 07 March 2017

Juno

A whole generation ago; that's a lot of people for whom it's only history. There's a chunk of it in my cupboard somewhere.

Edward Matthew Smith

The National Army Museum chunk was taken off display when they closed nearly 3 years ago. When they reopen in 9 days, we find out if it's returned...