The Winston Churchill Britain at War Museum could be demolished in order to protect the nearby London Bridge Station from car bomb attacks if Network Rail get their way, reports the London SE1 community website.
The small museum, notable for its V2 rocket that looks nothing like a V2 rocket and its TARDIS, is a tenant in the South Eastern Railway building on Tooley Street. This Victorian terrace has been identified by Network Rail and their consultants CgMs as being at risk from car bombs. They believe that unless the building is demolished and the pavement widened, terrorists would be able to get too close to the station and any resulting explosion could cause much more damage.
The building, from 1894, was designed by Charles Barry Junior whose father designed the Palace of Westminster. Crucially, however, the building does not have a listed status which would have protected it.
The Bermonsey Village Action Group have launched a petition calling on Southwark Council and Boris Johnson to step in and save the buildings. Their website explains “there is no sound justification (in demolishing the buildings) beyond (Network Rail’s) desire to replace both with cheap and bland frontages to the proposed new concourse for the station.
We can only guess what Winston Churchill would make of it all. When he famously declared that he ‘would fight them on the beaches’, he made no reference to fighting them on the concourse or platforms.
Southwark council’s planning committee is due to consider the plans on 20 December.