Past and future

Wednesday, January 15th, 2003

Working in Wapping today… as you walk from Tower Hill station to where I'm based you pass by the entrance to St Katherine's Dock, where there used to be an artificial stream and waterfall by an office building, Europe House. It was pretty phoney, but it still looked good and walking next to it was a break from the concrete that would otherwise be there. On days of heavy rainfall you ran the risk of being splashed, and at Christmas they decorated it with comical life-sized snowmen.

It's gone now – the office building has been demolished for rebuilding and there are now towering wooden hoardings blocking off a pit where the office and the stream used to be.

There is an unexpected bonus at the moment though – as you walk back to the station there's a wonderful view of the Tower of London which was previously blocked by the office.

The view – and the hoarding – will be there until, I think, next summer when it will be replaced by another anonymous glass building, very similar to all the other anonymous glass office buildings that you see.

Can't really see how that's a gain.

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I'm Andy Darley. Sometimes I want to say things. This is where I do it.