Planning Of Charles Holdens Morden Station History Essay

When Charles Holden was invited to plan the extension of the City and South London Railway, he envisioned making architecture for the people. The vision that Holden had was to make a strong solid design, the like of which Brighton had non seen earlier. His purposes were to give the Underground Group modern new designs which were both every bit functional and striking in visual aspects. Frank Pick who employed Holden wanted to give the resistance a strong consistence across the line, so that no bystander could see the edifices and non recognize what they represented. Among the Stationss that Holden designed was Morden, which was a modern design developed from his past enterprise. It was non merely the design, usage of stuffs or the ambiance of the station that made it so modern it ‘s what it represented. One of the chief planning elements of the station was the frontage the key to its modernist individuality.

One of the things that made Holden ‘s Stationss modern was how radically different the frontages were from the edifices of his predecessors. Leslie Green an iconic station interior decorator worked in a neo Georgian manner which was subsequently adopted by Henry Ford. Stanley Heaps became architect in sequence to Ford and carried on Greens general manner.[ 1 ]A adult male that was cognizant of this was Pick who was made one of the two helper pull offing managers of the London Underground appointed by Lord Ashfield.[ 2 ]He understood the significance of a corporate image and the demand for the resistance to hold a strong consistent visual aspect which would be easy recognizable by the populace. He was cognizant of programs for the development of the extension of the Group ‘s City & A ; South London Railway from Clapham Common to Morden. He was n’t content with the designs of the Edgware line Stationss and sought that which he described as ‘a new architectural parlance ‘[ 3 ]. He commissioned Charles Holden for this ‘experiment ‘ and to plan the eight new Stationss. Pick ‘s vision was merely every bit strong as Holden ‘s, in that he wanted to give the populace what they wanted and so the manner was paved for Holden ‘s modern architecture to be put on a base.

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When it came to the Morden extension, Pick was adult male of equity who liked to further competition and allowed his in-house designers to subject a design for Morden station[ 4 ], every bit good as commissioning the design from Holden. After the decease of Leslie Green, Stanley Heaps headed the Underground Group ‘s ‘in-house ‘ designers. Heaps had considerable experience antecedently working on the extension to Edgware, for which he designed Stationss in a neo-Georgian manner with ‘colonnaded entrywaies and tiled pyramidic roofs ‘ .[ 5 ]A 1:1 theoretical account of the outside for the general design was built to reenforce Holden ‘s proposal before building.[ 6 ]In hindsight it was a slightly simple design which may hold been really dull in executing but Pick and Holden gave each station a sense of importance and value with Morden being no exclusion. Holden ‘s designs were chosen to be built and non long after the building began, with Morden opening on 13 September 1926 in concurrence with the remainder of the line.[ 7 ]The building was funded by the authorities as at the clip London was retrieving from World War I and this seen as a good relive to unemploA­yment.

Holden foremost worked for the resistance in 1924 when he was asked to alter the frontage of Westminster station ‘s side entryway to the ticket hall. Though ab initio rather a little committee it would trip the remainder of his calling for the belowground group. The redesigned entryway convoys the modernist features which he goes on to plan on the Morden extension but on a larger graduated table. The main elements that would permeate station design for the following 30 old ages are distilled here in a simpler agreement: level surface with the little geometrical particularization, bluish station name frieze panel over the entryway the company ‘ s saloon and circle identifying symbol.[ 8 ]Holden went on to work on the frontages of other Stationss designed in a really classical Victorian manner by Green. The Stationss that Holden redesigned ‘were basically classical designs dressed up as modernism through the usage of rendition and unreal rock or pick coloured ceramic blocks[ 9 ]. Holden had experimented with assorted fluctuations in the designs for the frontages of the edifices and what worked best. This straight influenced the Stationss he would travel on to plan for the Morden extension.

Built on farm land Morden even today is the southern-most point on the Underground system[ 10 ]and was the ideal location for the big terminal station. With this in head Holden had no limitation as he did on his old Stationss[ 11 ]nor did he hold any limitations from Pick. He was ‘given more a less a free manus, Pick frequently undertakings from a little study.[ 12 ]The modernist frontages of Holden ‘s designs were the cardinal item in the overall grasp of the Stationss, with Morden being no exclusion ; in fact the Morden frontage is something of an pioneer[ 13 ]. With the absence of a side route Holden designed a consecutive frontage[ 14 ]. The dual floor entryway in a tower-like signifier is dominated by three big Windowss over the nothingness of the entryway which was added at land degree. Dividing the Windowss and entryway is a shallow canopy in bluish enamelled dramatis personae Fe. A spectacle of stores incorporated into the design on each side of the enforcing station entryway. The design for the stores is one of beauty with crisply cut nothingnesss for the Windowss and store foreparts. This gave the edifice laterality in that it appeared as one big smooth rock to which nothingnesss were added. With the ulterior add-on of the larger canopy across the wings it tied in good with the bing shallow canopy above the entryway[ 15 ]. With the deficiency of otiose ornamentation and the bold three-dimensional design the station appeared outstandingly modern in what at the clip were Victorian milieus. A important component to the frontage was the non merely at morden but the other Stationss on the extension was the glass windows.

All eight Stationss on the extension had featured three stained glass Windowss, which are frequently referred to as the ‘folding screens ‘ . These turn uping screens were evocative of Holden ‘s 1924 design for Westminster Station. The ground that the screens were so clever was that it allowed him to work with any angle of a street corner, to maintain a consistent design across the Stationss but it besides allowed him to capture the maximal passing trade. A comparing can be made of Honking Bec to South Wimbledon Stationss where there is a huge alteration in the angle.[ 16 ]Here we truly see signifier following map a really modernist manner of thought. The frontage would sit on curve with three faces but appear as one. So because of its effectivity the opposite agreement was adopted for Morden. The three foliage screen symbolically became a level frontage[ 17 ]which reinforced the horizontal position of the edifice as a whole. The cardinal stained glass window has the Undergound roundel in the in-between utilizing its signature colors of bluish and ruddy. Metal bars in between the thin glass reinforced the tallness of the tower ; the top of the glazing is removable for airing intents. Whether a station on a corner or non the folding screens are really effectual Underground architecture, David Lawrence 1994

working like a triptych with the spectator reading the edifice left to compensate. Despite Holden ‘s modernist outlook he did do room for some ornamentation. Between the Windowss were tapering columns surmounted by three dimensional spherical roundels, with no structural intent ( pulling ) . However in 1927 Bond Street a development of the Morden station frontage saw the two columns removed.[ 18 ]

One of the characteristic expressed by the Morden frontage is its welcoming inflammatory bowel disease. Pick was really interested in making a welcoming ambiance for his Stationss. Holden ‘s Stationss were described as ‘an ask foring room access in an architectural scene that can non be missed by the insouciant walker ‘ .[ 19 ]With powerful new engineering Holden was able to hold Morden floodlit from the top of the shallow canopy giving a xanthous freshness at dark. A few decennaries earlier Leslie Green had introduced Na lamps to do his oxblood Stationss appear orange at dark[ 20 ], but the yellow is a much more psychologically welcoming coloring material than orange. With his modernist attack he decided on adding an exposed pendant with multiple light bubbles straight behind the glassy glass to light the logo at dark but let the ticket hall to be infested with natural visible radiation during the twenty-four hours see drawings 2. This was of great importance to Pick who described it as ‘billboard architecture ‘ as by dark the radiance roundel lit from buttocks would publicize itself[ 21 ]. The polygonal fanlight straight above the ticket hall besides plays a important portion in making the ambiance with natural visible radiation deluging in to what would otherwise necessitate unreal illuming during the twenty-four hours.

As portion of the welcoming scheme, the big nothingness of the entryway came out so far it was portion of the street working in the passage from the street to the station or to the coach stops located outside the station. ‘The unobstructed gap in the frontage was a precursor of many 100s of stores and supermarkets that were to occupy our high streets a one-fourth of a century subsequently ‘ .[ 22 ]Holden ‘s pick of stuff for the frontage was Portland rock. A absolute panel of white Portland rock two narratives high would hold dominated its milieus in rural Morden at the clip. Solid, powerful and strong, the surface of the station gave off no item but that of the architrave at the margin and the Windowss[ 23 ]. There may hold been many grounds for Holden taking Portland rock among which was that it was the traditional London edifice stuff every bit good as how compatible the rock was with other constructing stuffs as he intended for the Stationss to be built upon. Thinking long term for Holden used this stuff because he believed that it was good at enduring and self cleansing but this theory has been revealed to be merely partially true. Morden station today is demoing the strains of clip holding been cleaned merely a decennary ago. Portland rock is besides good it floodlit at dark with its surface texture making shadows within itself. Portland rock was used extensively in ulterior undertakings but whether it was every bit effectual as it was in Holden ‘s Stationss is problematic. By utilizing Portland rock Holden was able to accomplish the bold white three-dimensional modernist manner prominent in Europe at the late 20 ‘s and 30 ‘s

In 1925 representatives from the Underground Group visited the Paris Exposition Internationale des Arts Daˆscoratifs et Industriels Modernes from which the term ‘Art Deco ‘ is derived[ 24 ]. Some of the best designers from around the universe were involved with a great accent on three-dimensional signifiers being shown at the clip. This modernist manner took over Europe underscoring the geometry of the signifier looking in to the particularization. However this manner of utilizing three-dimensional signifiers can be seen in Holden ‘s work good before this where his designs concentrate on the cardinal rudimentss. His work has that nudity about it but it still standing out from the overly modern edifices of European architecture in 1920s and 30s.

Holden ‘s Morden station had consentaneous blessing from the populace and architectural industry likewise described as ‘prophetic beacons of the new age ‘ .[ 25 ]It is hard for us to appreciate the extremist architecture of that clip which can now merely be described as period appeal.[ 26 ]The frontage of Morden station genuinely makes it a modern design from the precession and truth of the design to the advanced solutions to jobs. Holden has gone on to non merely construct many Stationss but influence merely every bit much whit his Stationss today merely every bit functional as they were about a century ago a mark of a existent modern edifice. Morden has gone on to turn, for at that place subsequently followed a proliferation of stores and edifices based on the same political orientation and mentality laid by Holden and his vision for London.



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