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Portcullis House - House of Commons overspill haunt.

PALACE CHAMBERS flattened: Look whats in its place.

You might have noticed the new multi chimney building above Westminster Tube Station. Yes, that's the one that took a millennia to build, costing endless wads of
Portcullis House windbags
Chimneys: Political windbags spout hot air
cash, so that our poor overfed politicians might have somewhere to hold their business lunches. This state of the art pigpen is a real life study in the art of wasting government funds, ie our hard earned funds. The government spent úzillions upon this showroom just like there was no tommorow. Its not as if they exactly re-created Xanadu. I just cant see where the money went, unless you count the foundations that propped the whole thing up above the station. Maybe they did spend a lot on those business lunches. The destruction of this block and the old station meant turmoil for the whole area for years, and although I admit that the inclusion of the Jubilee Line is indeed some advancement, they have yet again gone way overboard in catering for tourist capacity and parliamentary greed. It's sad to see a nice old building, shops and station scrapped at massive expense. And the only gains are a miserable faceless tube hall, with and equally faceless and awkward building aloft.

Bridge Street Palace Chambers & St Stephen's House

For many years, this site was the location for a not at all vulgar complex. The 1-3 Bridge Street, Palace Chambers, and St Stephen's House block was
Original buildings on Bridge Street.
Bridge Street: The original site.
quite sedate in its design, and the perfect foil for it's elite surroundings. After all, with its brethren of the glittering Big Ben, the powerful Old Scotland Yard, and the classically fitted out Treasury, one certainly didnt need a shocking statement in this arena. No modernist mass of morbid metal needed to downgrade this area next to the commons. The Palace Gardens was on any Big Ben postcard, and Winstons funeral. How could any goverment be so damned foolish to let it go??? The old Bridge Street buildings were proud old world London, dirty and dusty and historic. Built to last and to be loved. A pleasurable sight to the tourists eye. St Stephen's House itself was famous for being the initial HQ for Charles deGaulle and the Free french when they arrived in London in 1940. This was an extremely dignified set of offices that could have easily been converted and upgraded and kept for the nation.

This great unknown soldier housed many quiet little enterprises, including the world famous 24-hr cabby's cafe, which was an excellent venue to sup tea to the charms of Big Ben's chimes. I can remember many a time looking at my dishevelled self in their mirrored walls at 3am. Another section was the original site for the forthright and
Bridge Street Palace Chambers.
Palace Chambers in better days.
smooth old gents playground of the St Stephens' club. And down below, the original cutely tiled victorian olde Tube Station, very nice, adequate, and so lovable, kept with the antique feel for the area, and had a fun 'MP's only' exit to the commons. There was plenty of office space available in this block to cater for any size mob of hot and sweaty politicians. Definately no need to wipe out the architecture. This area was a conservation target, and technologically, everything was ripe for an easy refit. Time saw the sad death of these buildings, after being left to rot. Isnt it just typical when they just let buildings rot away so they can excuse their demolition orders. This was the sad fate of this historic block.

Behold: The waste that is Portcullis.

I cringe to see the destruction and waste of money, but i'm also displeased at Portcullis' design. With those silly ugly chimneys and uninviting exterior,
Portcullis House smokestack frightning
Portcullis House: Smokestack frightning.
it's downgraded the area. Why couldn't they leave well alone? It's supposed to be a masterpiece in art and engineering, but only on paper, because the plans have resulted in an odd looking interior too. Fighting past the masses of security one is instantly upon a vast, typical, and sleeky modern atrium, disfigured by the many spokes and supporting braces for the roofing and superstructure. It's a selection of silly steelworks that really belong on the neighbouring London Eye. Extremely expensive trees line the causeway, which should have made for a breathtaking oasis, but instead are the only life in a vomit coloured overlit bear pit, littered with canteen furniture and even more security guards. What a disgrace in comparison with the delightful buildings that Portcullis dared to replace.

Charles (of London Town)

The London Destruction Website.