Tuesday, 19 May 2009

The centre of London

How you define the centre of London is pretty tricky - many, including my trusty rough guide, would have it as Trafalgar Square. Apparently, Black cabs have it as Charing Cross. Certainly, the centre of the City has moved west, and has been moving west for a long time - such that the City itself is now considered to be in East London!

But I think that it is beginning to shift back again. Not to the city for sure - not yet anyway (More on that later - there's a new change coming to the City) but in the last couple of decades the south bank has exploded, and new bridges have connected it to the North bank and St Pauls. In the East, Spitalfields is hotting up, and Bricklane and Spitalfields market are now attractions in their own right across the whole of London. And of course we have the olympics even further east, establishing east London as the place to be in 2012 - and after?

So what will people think of as the centre in a few years time? There is a void between all those areas - the jammed west end, the busy south bank, the trendy east end. If you go there at the weekend now, bar a few isolated pockets, you'll just find a deserted wasteland, devoid of humanity - what the Corporation of London has spent fifty years trying to create, a business park. I do not however believe it will remain like that for long thogh - like it or not, by sheer geography, by architecture and the City towers rising as waypoints, the City of London is returning to its place as the centre of London.

And I like it. Only one question though - where's the centre of the City? St Pauls? The Guildhall? The London stone?...

No comments:

Post a Comment