In praise of great stations

I am sitting in the re-ordered concourse at King’s Cross. What a transformation! I am on an upper balcony looking towards the original building, under the new sensational fan-vaulted canopy. When I arrived this was bathed in a gentle blue light, but now has resumed daylight lighting.

The original frontage, so admired by John Betjeman and others is being revealed again in all its glory, having lost the ugly clutter that has accreted around the front, they will still need to resolve the air vent but that is a minor blemish.

There have been a few occasions when I wished Simon was still here to see this, Lost in Translation was one film I wish he could have seen, as it so mirrored his own experience in Japan. The reformation at King’s Cross is another such. He used to fulminate against the abominations that obscured the wondrous archways and wrought iron of the Victorian Gateway to the East and North of England and Scotland every time we passed it.

Then there is St Pancras, what a wonderful place that is now. In fact the whole area including King’s Place and the newly refurbished grain stores that now house St Martin’s School of Art and Design; all transformed into vibrant spaces and places to visit, eat, enjoy and wonder at. Down-at-heel London, resort for tramps and prostitutes it is not, although not fully realised as yet, this is an area to visit for its own sake



1 Comment

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One response to “In praise of great stations

  1. As an ex-resident of the immediate vicinity I agree that this is a vast improvement. What annoys me is the wholesale sell-out to the same chains that are taking over high streets nationwide and other previously unique areas, like the nearby Brunswick Centre which used to have some interesting, quirky eateries and shops surrounding the independent Renoir Cinema, but is now given over to the likes of Giraffe and Starbucks.

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