Monday, October 31, 2022

County Hall


London The Unfinished City
The County Hall from the River Thames.

Thursday October 27, 2022.

I have visited The County Hall, to see the London Aquarium, The London Dungeon and other attractions housed within the building, but I had never stayed in this iconic location. So I was over the moon when Emma booked us in to the Premier Inn for the night, during a recent trip to London.

Most of the building is private property, but if you speak nicely to security, and the building isn't too busy, you can go into the main foyer for a quick look around.

London The Unfinished City
The County Hall at night.

Besides that, the building is pretty much off limits to the public. Still, it was great to see inside areas not normally accessible and the view from the hotel room wasn't too bad, either.

At night the entire front of the building is lit up, making for a striking light display.

Brief History

The building is made up of different blocks. The main building, which is six storeys, is faced with Portland Stone and construction began in 1911, opening in 1922. The North and South buildings were opened in 1936 and 1939, respectively. The final block was completed in 1974.

London The Unfinished City
Within The County Hall.

The County Hall was home to the London County Council until 1965, when it was abolished to make way for the Greater London Council 

The Greater London Council used the building until that, too, was abolished in 1986.

With the building standing predominantly empty, except for use by the London Education Authority, there were plans to relocate the London School of Economics, there, but this never materialised.

In 1990 the building was sold to Shirayama Shokusan, a Japanese investor, who had the Island block demolished, in 2006, to make way for a hotel.

The County Hall is the site of various businesses and attractions, including the Sea Life London Aquarium, the London Dungeons, and Shrek's Adventure London.

There are also two hotels located inside the County Hall, Premier Inn London County Hall and London Marriott Hotel County Hall.

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