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St Christopher House remembered

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Friday 19 September 2008 2.47pm
Good afternoon all,

A working lifetime ago (1961-64) I started my first job at the War Office, as it then was, in the Western part of the much-missed (:-P) St Christopher House (as it was called - no 's in those days...). The major part of the building was then occupied by the Ministry of Transport.

I last saw the building, it must have been in 2003. It was still in use - the Highways Agency appeared to occupy the whole building. I had gathered, a year or two later, that SCH was being considered for redevelopment (hmm, it had already been demolished!), but I was still a little taken aback a few days ago when, on a rare visit to Bankside, I saw that there were now two (or is it three?) new buildings in its place.

I must say, the new buildings are a considerable improvement, and I like the way access from Southwark St to Bankside has now been opened up.

However, nostalgic ramblings aside, the reason for this post is to ask whether anyone could point me to any photos of the old building? The internet is awash with pics of Blue Fin House, but I can't find a trace of photographic evidence of SCH.

Thanks for reading.

Friday 19 September 2008 4.26pm
I remember that building, only in the way that you wish it would disappear with a minimum of fuss! It really was a hideous eye-sore....
Friday 19 September 2008 5.01pm
You still can see it's roof / outline in the book titled London Photographic Atlas - It's on page 61....

This book is becoming more and more interesting over the years!
Friday 19 September 2008 6.03pm
The NHS organisation that carries out spot checks on dental patients, to assess the quality of the work carried out by NHS dentists was based there for a while.
I received a letter from them inviting me to have my latest dental treatment assessed. I had recently had a crown fitted.
A week or so later I received a phone call from my dental surgery, asking me to come in and have a new crown fitted free of charge, the one they had fitted previously had been condemned.
Shortly after that my dentist retired. I don't know if my crown had any bearing on his decision.
Friday 19 September 2008 7.56pm
Thanks, Tak! I'll see if I can find it in the library. (Just looked at the catalogue - they've got the 2000 edition; will order it!)

Saturday 20 September 2008 8.51am
The best I could find was this picture showing the corner of Tabard House.

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Saturday 20 September 2008 11.50am
I'll see what I can find. I took a great deal of pics, both inside and out, as it was being demolished and spent many a happy forage late at night in the basement; best find being the original power supply room, all big dials and lever switches with lovely glass domed light fittings (five of which I rescued and alas three I've subsequently broken).

Unfortunately these are mostly paper prints, I'll get a few scanned and post them here when I've worked out where they all are.
Monday 22 September 2008 4.01pm
Thanks, James and Tolstoy, much appreciated.

James, I'm having trouble placing the photographer on that pic - trying to reconcile a modern A-Z and 45 year old memory :-)

Tolstoy, that sounds a fascinating way to spend your evenings - though maybe a trifle - erm, unauthorised! We used to use some of the SCH basement rooms in the early 60s as a lunchtime social club. Were there sub-basements there? I just have this odd half-recollection.

The massive concrete slab that was SCH first introduced me to the 'joys' of building-generated whirlwinds...


Monday 22 September 2008 4.06pm
The picture I linked to was taken from the corner of Sumner Street and Holland Street looking towards Southwark Street. Irwin House, in the centre of the photo, has recently been demolished. It stood at the north-western corner of Sumner Street and Southwark Street.

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Monday 22 September 2008 4.49pm
Thanks, James - got my bearings now!

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