Monday, August 15, 2016

Floral Hall portico, Borough Market, London

click photo to enlarge
We've visited Borough Market, Southwark, in London on many occasions over the years. In fact, in a recent discussion with friends about London markets I named it as my favourite. It specialise in food, and is a great place to see the variety that the world has to offer, as well as somewhere to find an interesting snack or a sit-down meal.

In recent years it has been comprehensively re-developed but has retained much of its original structure that interfaces with the nearby buildings of Southwark (including the cathedral and the Shard), as well as the railway that passes over it.

However, there is one building in Borough Market that has always puzzled me. It is a steel and glass portico painted silver; an ornate, obviously Victorian structure that appears to be an entrance and which bears little relationship to the rest of the market. On our recent visit to the capital I resolved to find out what it is. It seems that the building dates from 1858-9 and was originally part of the Floral Hall adjoining Covent Garden Theatre. It was re-sited as the entrance to Borough Market in 2003 having been in storage since the 1980s when it was taken down during a re-development of Covent Garden. The architect of the piece was Edward Middleton Barry and the structure is Grade II Listed. It was been sensitively restored at the time of its installation and it makes an eye-catching addition to the street scene in this part of London.

photograph and text © Tony Boughen

Photo Title: Floral Hall Portico, Borough Market, London
Camera: Olympus E-M10
Mode: Aperture Priority
Focal Length: 14mm (28mm - 35mm equiv.)
F No: f5.6
Shutter Speed: 1/320 sec
Exposure Compensation: -0.3 EV
Image Stabilisation: On