Bastion House and the Museum of London

By now you should have received the latest Barbican Association Newsletter (also available to read here), in which Adam Hogg, Chair of the BA, discusses the future of the Museum of London and Bastion House.

If you live on the Barbican estate, the BA would be interested to know whether you think there should be a campaign to challenge the City Corporation’s planned demolition of these buildings.

18 comments

  1. The City is constantly evolving and must continue to so so. The Museum of London and Bastion House have , in my opinion, no architectural merit to warrant their being saved. As one of the first residents in Thomas More House in 1972, I watched the Museum and Bastion House being constructed. So a 50 year life cycle for these buildings is reasonable.

  2. I dislike the look of Bastion House so would not object to its removal, but would oppose any high rise building in its place.
    The Museum has been constructed in materials and style to match the existing Barbican Estate buildings and blends in well. Adapting it to accommodate small commercial premises or flats for residents would be challenging, but if space stations can be built and telecabines can make light work of scaling mountains, it shouldn’t be difficult to make bigger windows in the Museum structure.

  3. Not a fan of Bastion house but deeply unhappy about knocking it down and rebuilding another high rise if the embodied carbon in the existing building can be saved. I fail to see why the museum of London buildings cannot be refurbished/ repurposed.

  4. As a Thomas More resident – happy with it being demolished, provided that the new building retains or reinstates the highwalks that are currently within the envelope of the old building *and* finally connects up the highwalk at Mountjoy House

  5. Why does the City not discuss re purposing the MoL building with City of London Girls school ( and possibly the Boys School ) as we all know that CoLGS are keen to expand?

  6. The whole area needs a strategic plan. Knocking down and building new is resource demanding. What is needed in the area? What are the future needs. What’s the plan? Perhaps the City of London Girls School could move there. A museum in the cellar. The CLGS could be a day centre for care, all ages, rehab, clinic, physio, gym, crèche, etc. Respite and palliative care on site. Let’s think and plan.

  7. Surely the buildings could be repurposed to serve the arts? More art gallery and chamber music and dance space would surely enhance the cultural offerings of the barbican center.

  8. Very sad that the great dream of yesterday for a core part of a ‘cultural mile’, albeit at tremendous cost, should be replaced by a hole in the ground. As Neighbourhood residents, surely we should have some input, even partnership as to new ways forwards – a different sort of cultural mile, school expansion or whatever.

  9. The MoL is an intriguing and interesting building by distinguished architects. Please don’t let them destroy something that good to put what is likely to be trash in its place. There will be no thought of scale, context, merit or adventure in its replacement and we will have to look at it and live with it for ages.

  10. No building should be demolished without careful consideration to the amount of carbon it stores, so feasibility of a refurb must be given a high priority in the light of limited resources & ecological foot print. Surely it could be made to look more attractive – it is so dark & ugly! I would object strongly to anything higher or wider, which would block views of St Paul’s & the Old Bailey from our flat. Maintaining high level walks around the area is very important. Reconnect the walk way beneath Mountjoy potentially, but only with agreement from residents in that block. Why is everything focused on “culture & entertainment?” – how about a world class centre for ecology, science, technology etc linked with Nat Hist & Science museums and St Barts – look what’s being done at Kings Cross with the links between technology, enterprise and research!

    1. So far we’ve figured out that this seems to be an issue only with some browsers so if you’re able to try another browser while we get to the bottom of this, you might be able to vote.

  11. I have been watching many large developments along London Wall since 1979 first as a City worker and later as a resident of Thomas More House. I regard some as inspired but others as disasters. There is an unsettling cacophony on either side of London Wall as I take walks on Highwalk. Now as we are bound to enter into ‘a new normality’ of Post COVID-19, it seems to make more sense to repurpose the two buildings rather than causing detrimental environmental consequences by demolishing them and construing new ones of yet unknown character.

  12. – Bastion House should be saved – it’s the closest thing the City got to a Mies van der Rohe building after the debacle of 1 Poultrey all those years ago. Yes it does look brown, stark and rusty but in this age of ‘shape architecture’ it is a survivor of a previous age and is as much a relic to be preserved as the retained medieval walls on the estate.
    I couldn’t vote either.

    1. Agree completely about Bastion House. (The bathroom-tile mess of the MoL, though, has little to recommend it.)

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