St Pancras Railway Station

Wednesday, 14th November 2007 by

Today marks the launch of London's new Channel Tunnel1 rail link, High Speed 1 - which from now on terminates here at the "Cathedral of the railways", St Pancras railway station.

The station actually comprises two of the most celebrated structures of the Victorian era. In our first thumnbail we can see the clock tower of St Pancras Chambers (formerly the Midland Grand Hotel), which remains one of the most impressive examples of Victorian gothic architecture anywhere in Britain.

The Midland Grand Hotel closed in 1935, and the building was used as offices until the 60s, when only a public campaign saved it from being knocked down. The building became vacant in the 1980s2, and since 2005 it's been under renovation, and will soon once again be a hotel.

The Barlow Trainshed, designed by William Henry Barlow and completed in 1868, was the largest single-span structure built up to that time. The single span roof is 74 metres across, and was actually employed purely to make maximum use of the space without obstructions.

The trainshed has received a full renovation in preparation for its new role as the London terminus of High Speed 1, and we can see the work in progress in Google's images.

Here's more about St Pancras at Wikipedia. Thanks to Radio 2.

  1. "The Chunnel" - the longest undersea tunnel in the world. ↩︎

  2. The deserted building became a popular location for film and tv crews, appearing in many productions including the Spice Girls' first video and Batman Begins. ↩︎