South Eastern Railways Office Under Threat

Dean Nicholas
By Dean Nicholas Last edited 80 months ago
South Eastern Railways Office Under Threat

The Victorian Society has launched an appeal to save a distinctive former railway office in Tooley Street, SE1.

The South Eastern Railways Office was built, as the name might suggest, for the eponymous train operator. It was designed by Charles Barry Jr and constructed in 1893, and according to the Society, has earned a reputation as London's 'Flatiron building', mimicking the celebrated New York skyscraper of that name, because of its unusual wedge-like shape (best appreciated in this map or this photograph).

South Eastern Railways closed in 1922, and today the building is occupied by the Churchill at War exhibition, a restaurant, and a paintball firm. Yet it is slated to be demolished as part of the London Bridge station redevelopment, and replaced with a public plaza.

Chris Costelloe, a conservation consultant for the Society, argues that Network Rail's case for the demolition is "unconvincing", and argues that it should be retained within the London Bridge rebuild. Yet a request for granting it listed status was rejected last month by the Heritage Minister. The Society has urged Southwark council to refuse the demolition order, but at this point the building's fate doesn't look good.

Photo by R/DV/RS

See also:

16 Tube stations get listed

Last Updated 09 September 2011

Robert B

I'm sure they could come up with a fantastic development that preserved the old building... if they really wanted to...


Let it go. We're getting a nice new station and they need it taken down to make a nice space for people to arrive in.


No, no, and no again to demolition. Modern architects have proved incapable of building anything appeasing to the eye of anyone beyond the passing tourist. And the age old adage of 'modern = utility' is a) often incorrect and b) on similar logic would have us all living in concrete tower blocks all over London. Our history is what makes this city and our country. Of course you could argue that these buildings will 'become' our history. I fail to see how steel and glass will ever be looked upon by future generations in the same light. More likely such buildings will be knocked down in 30 years. And p.s. Euston station is a nightmare to use

G Smith

Great building, some tlc, clean exterior, gentle sand blast, up and downlighters...would look stunning. Much better than whatever will replace it, it area is just going to be full of glass buildings....v boring, with no character. Come on this building must be saved!