Lost buildings of Lewisham

The History of Sydenham from Cippenham to present day. Links to photos especially welcome!

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Big Ben
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Lost buildings of Lewisham

Post by Big Ben » 23 Mar 2008 12:53

Does anyone have any photos of the church of St Lawrence in Catford - more to the point, does anyone know why it was demolished?

Falkor
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Post by Falkor » 23 Mar 2008 16:23

Apparently: in 1968, "to make way for the town hall extension"; however, I don't see how the church would have affected things... :?
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If anyone else has any topics they would like to discuss about any other historical buildings in the rest of the Lewisham parish, outside of Sydenham and Forest Hill, then feel free to post!

Big Ben
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Post by Big Ben » 24 Mar 2008 07:55

Amazing pix - thanks Falkor for putting them up.

leenewham
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Post by leenewham » 24 Mar 2008 11:02

Wow, another example of Lewisham Councils incredible taste in architecture! Great picture Falkor.

Why do councils always get it so wrong?!! What a shame. Another interesting building lost forever.

MartinH
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Post by MartinH » 24 Mar 2008 12:08

I'm not sure which came first, the church or the town hall, but the architects, in those days, showed great awareness. Just look at the symmetry and how they compliment each other. After demolishing the church the council replaced it with it an almighty coffin!

Falkor
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Post by Falkor » 24 Mar 2008 12:19

I'm not sure which came first, the church or the town hall...
Just compare the first and second pictures!

MartinH
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Post by MartinH » 24 Mar 2008 12:51

But of course.

simon
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Post by simon » 24 Mar 2008 19:33

Would love to see pictures of the greyhound stadium if anyone has them. The only ones I have are ones I took after it had closed and fell into disrepair.


Big Ben
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Post by Big Ben » 25 Mar 2008 13:40

Does anyone know who the architect of the old town hall was - the very church-like building alongside St Laurence's in Falkor's pictures. Looks to me a bit like Waterhouse, the great architect of the Gothic Revival who built Manchester Town Hall and the Prudential building on Holborn.

simon
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Post by simon » 25 Mar 2008 14:48

Thanks Will, those first pics are great, the second one somewhat sad.

Falkor
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Post by Falkor » 25 Mar 2008 21:31

Can't find the name of the architect, unfortunately...

In my opinion, the most spectacular and grandest of all buildings in historical Lewisham was also the building that hasn't yet been featured in John Coulter's series of six or so postcards books of the borough--one I suggested he should feature on the front cover of his next book if he ever compiles another--The Priory! John describes it as a strawberry hill type gothic villa, but I think I can come up with a better description. You've seen the town hall and St Laurence's Church. Imagine, now, the Tower Of London being located down Lewisham High Street!

jackieboo
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thanks for those.

Post by jackieboo » 26 Mar 2008 08:50

I remember the church well. it was still there when I went to see Barbarella at the cinema in Catford!.

Falkor
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Post by Falkor » 26 Mar 2008 10:20

Hey jackieboo, I got a treat coming up for you! You wanted to see some pictures of Kent House Road, right? :wink:

Steve Grindlay
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Post by Steve Grindlay » 26 Mar 2008 12:43

Big Ben wrote:Does anyone know who the architect of the old town hall was - the very church-like building alongside St Laurence's in Falkor's pictures. Looks to me a bit like Waterhouse, the great architect of the Gothic Revival who built Manchester Town Hall and the Prudential building on Holborn.
The old town hall was built 1874-75 and the architect was George Elkington, about whom I know nothing other that that he was also responsible for a couple of buildings in Bermondsey, but I don't think they survive either.

jackieboo
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Faklor

Post by jackieboo » 26 Mar 2008 17:30

I'm getting excited!

Sid & Ham
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Post by Sid & Ham » 27 Mar 2008 08:20

Wasn't the original plan to retain one of the old towers to act as a breaker between the new town hall and the Broadway Theatre?

Planners often refer to the building line but the Civic Suite juts out about 10ft thus obscuring The Broadway Theatre.

Other buildings between Catford & St. Mary's that have gone, the original Colfe's Almshouses, Zion House, The mighty Priory and as late as the 1990's the original Prendegast School on Rushey Green.

nannyjacks
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Post by nannyjacks » 21 Mar 2009 09:55

I can remember when the old lewisham council offices were in canadian Avenue well before they spent a fortune building a HUGE town hall.They were just a long line prefabricated buildings .people went ther to pay their rent and complain if the dustmen hadn't bothered to pick up what they had dropped on the garden path Different world back in the early 1950s

janismccahill
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Re: Lost buildings of Lewisham

Post by janismccahill » 1 Oct 2015 02:27

Hi
I was wondering if anyone has a picture of 249 High Street Lewisham where the present fire hall stands - was wondering if the old buildings were damaged during WWII or if they were removed after the war
Thanks
Janis

LewisSale
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Re: Lost buildings of Lewisham

Post by LewisSale » 4 Oct 2015 14:42

I have a little information on George Elkington the Architect of the Board of Works building which later became the first Lewisham Town Hall.
He was born in Bermondsey on 14 June 1824 the son of Simeon, a Wool Stapler and Elizabeth his wife. He was baptized at St Mary Magdalene church in Bermondsey on 1 August 1824 when the family were living in Grange Walk. On the 1841 census George is shown still at Grange Walk aged 15 an described as "Architect" His father died in 1844. He married Emily More on 24 September 1850 in St Mary Magdalene church. In 1851 he is shown as an Architect and Surveyor at 7 Chestnut Terrace in Bermondsey. In 1861 he is shown living at Anerley Road Penge with his wife Emily and five children, the youngest of whom was born at Penge while the others aged 8 down to 4 were born in Bermondsey. In 1871 he is shown as living at "Briarford" in Anerley Road. He is still living in Anerley Road, at number 204, in 1891, probably the same house. I believe he died in 1897.
In 1971, Lewisham Council published a booklet entitled " Lewisham Town Hall 1875 - 1968. This names George Elikngton as the Architect to the Lewisham Board of Works and he produced his plans in January 1874. The land for the building had been purchased from the Guardians of the Poor of the Parish of Lewisham for £1,010. The builders were the newly formed Messrs Hill, Higgs and Hill of Crown Works Vauxhall, who later went on to build, in London the Tate Gallery, the Harvey Nicholls Store and County Hall. They were renamed just Higgs and Hill in 1879 and survived until 1996 when they were taken over by a foreign firm.
The foundation stone was laid by the Chairman of the Board, James Brooker on 27 July 1874. There were two James Brookers in Lewisham at the time. The elder, a retired builder in 1871, was born in 1803 and died in 1877 lived at Taunton Villa in Brockley Park. His son James William, a more likely candidate, also a builder, was born in 1828 and lived at Milverton Lodge in Sydenham. The building was ceremonially opened on 28 July 1875 in the presence of some 150 guests (no ladies!) and had cost about £11,000 which was shared 2/3rd to be paid by Lewisham and 1/3rd by Penge based upon their respective rateable values.
A copy of this booklet which includes pictures of the interior of the building as well as pictures of Lewisham's mayors (all 44 of them) should be in the Archives Centre. It is worth a look.

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