London

Throwback Thursday: Kimpton Fitzroy London Hotel

When I took photos of this building next to Russell Square it was the Hotel Russell but now it is the five star Kimpton Fitzroy London. Built in 1898 by the architect Charles Fitzroy Doll it was opened in 1900 and its terracotta decoration was apparently based on the Chateau de Madrid near Paris which was demolished in the 1790s.

There is a lot going on with the decoration. The details such as those over the entrance were sculpted by W. J. Neatby…

…and the four Queens at the front – Elizabeth I, Mary II, Anne and Victoria (and prime ministers around the side – not pictured) were by H. C. Fehr.

The Russell Group, a self-selected association of twenty-four public research universities, was named after the original Hotel Russell which is where they held their first informal meetings.

You can find some more photos here.

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Throwback Thursday: Minerva House, London

Minerva House on North Crescent in Camden is a Grade II building that started out as a car showroom and offices for the Minerva Motor Company. They were a Belgian car company operating from 1902 until 1938. It was designed by George Vernon and the building itself dates from around 1912. The logo of the car company was the goddess Minerva – hence the statue of the goddess above the entrance.

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Throwback Thursday: The South Bank Lion, London

Originally this very impressive lion – made of Coade stone (a type of ceramic stone which is particularly resistant to weathering) – was mounted on top of James Goding’s Lion Brewery building in the 1830s. He was sculpted by William Frederick Woodington and stayed in place until 1949 when the brewery was demolished to make way for the Royal Festival Hall.

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Throwback Thursday: 107 Charing Cross Road, London

Currently the address of a large Foyle’s bookshop, 107 Charing Cross, built in 1938, used to house the college for the Distributive Trades and St Martin’s School of Art.

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Throwback Thursday: Atlas House, London

One of the last remaining Georgian office buildings in this area of London (it can be found on the corner of Cheapside and King Street in the City of London) it was designed in 1836 by Thomas Hopper. He was commissioned by the Atlas Assurance Company, a fire and life insurance company, and took inspiration from classical Italian architecture.

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Throwback Thursday: The Royal Exchange, London

The Royal Exchange building in London was founded in the 16th century by Sir Thomas Gresham as a centre of commerce. Twice it was destroyed by fire – the present building was designed by Sir William Tite in the 1840s. These days it houses various shops, cafes and restaurants.

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Throwback Thursday: General Francisco de Miranda Statue, Fitzroy Square, London

The Venezuelan Francisco de Miranda lived at 58 Grafton Way between 1802 to 1810 and it became the centre of South American revolutionary meetings. The statue is a copy of one made by the Venezuelan sculptor Rafael de la Cova and was placed here in 1990. He’s described on the sculpture as the precursor of Latin American independence and that he died a prisoner in Spain (in 1816).

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Throwback Thursday: Mary Queen of Scots House, London

In the early 20th century Scottish landowner and politician Sir John Tollemache Sinclair acquired the land at 143-144 Fleet Street and in 1905 commissioned architect Richard Mauleverer Roe to design a Neo-Gothic office.

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Throwback Thursday: Eye-I by Bruce McLean, 199 Bishopgate, London

This abstract female face is by Glasgow born Bruce McLean and can be found outside 199 Bishopgate in London. Created in 1993 the title apparently refers to Glasgow’s “aye-aye” greeting. Made of steel it really is a fun addition to the surroundings.

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Throwback Thursday: Jete by Enzo Plazzotta

This striking sculpture called Jete can be found at 48 Millbank, not far from Tate Britain. Enzo Plazzotta based the figure on David Wall who became the youngest male Principal in the history of The Royal Ballet.

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