St. Pancras, London, Great Britain
For every traveler who has visited London, St. Pancras International Station is a familiar place. It is, for example, the arrival and departure station of the high-speed Eurostar trains that connect the capital of Great Britain with Paris and Brussels. Also, it’s the southern end of the Midland Mainline national railway line and, what’s more, together with King’s Cross station, it conforms the third most visited Tube station in the city.
So many meeting points could only be harbored by building that equaled its magnificence a and that’s why St. Pancras is located in one of the most representative Victorian buildings in London and it’s one of the most photographed subway stations in this destination.
Art in St. Pancras
Interestingly, its façade is not the only part that’s worthy of admiration but also the art you can find in its interior. In 2007, when the station was remodeled and adapted to be able to receive the Eurostar, artist Paul Day created the sculpture The Meeting Place in order to commemorate the occasion. This work that weighs 20 tons and is 9 meters tall was elaborated in bronze and was originally planned as a figure of a kissing couple; however, because it was considered a daring pose, he finally decided to sculpt a couple whose foreheads touch tenderly. This image of a spontaneous and romantic encounter reflects the day-to-day activities on the station’s platforms. On the other hand, the sculpture’s base is conformed by a frieze in which you can find all sorts of characters and typical pictures related with train travel, so it serves as a mirror of the scenes that develop all around it. Among farewells and encounters, the sculpture reflects the station’s soul as well as that of the people who converge in it.
It’s important to say that St. Pancras station was almost demolished in the sixties and it was thanks to the mediation of the poet John Betjeman, who felt a profound admiration for railway development that this did not occur. As a tribute, artist Martin Jennings designed a 2.1 meter-tall sculpture that represents the poet looking up in awe at the magnificent Victorian engineering works while holding his hat as if the wind produced by the trains’ speed were about to rip it off from him.
Even though you’ll want to visit St. Pancras calmly in order to enjoy the works of art it safeguards, DINKtravelers recommends looking for the Dent clock, which you’ll find by raising your eyes above the sculpture of The Meeting Place. This clock is also a unique work of art, but apart from that, it’ll be your best ally so you don’t miss your train!