Vauxhall - Landmarks

Landmarks

By Vauxhall Bridge is the central headquarters of the British Secret Intelligence Service (more commonly referred to as MI6), which occupies offices built between 1989 and 1992 and commonly referred to as Vauxhall Cross. More recently, a large complex of apartments and offices has been built to the south of Vauxhall Bridge at St George Wharf. Part of this development includes the planned St George Wharf Tower, which upon completion will be the tallest residential building in the UK.

The MI6 building has featured in several James Bond films, initially filmed without permission but then condoned by then Foreign Secretary Robin Cook with his memorable "After all James Bond has done for Britain..." quip. It is seen in GoldenEye, The World Is Not Enough (wherein it suffers a fictional terrorist attack that prefigured a genuine incident), Die Another Day and Skyfall. The latter featured a fictional London Underground station, Vauxhall Cross, a supposedly closed stop on the Piccadilly Line now employed by MI6 as an extension to its HQ. In fact, the Piccadilly Line does not come south of the river at all; only the Victoria Line passes anywhere nearby, and the secret entrance to the station shown in the film is on the east side of Westminster Bridge some considerable distance down river.

Vauxhall is also home to Brunswick House, a listed Georgian mansion and former home to the Dukes of Brunswick. Built in 1758, it once stood in three acres of riverside parkland – now it sits in the middle of Vauxhall Cross overshadowed by the massive St George Wharf complex. The building was in a state of disrepair and was on the English Heritage 'Buildings at Risk' list until it was acquired by LASSCO (The London Architectural Salvage and Supply Company), which also has a branch in Oxford, in 2004. After the squatters were removed, the building was restored and it's now used by LASSCO as a premises from which to sell architectural salvage. Members of the public are welcome to visit the restored building for a glimpse of Vauxhall's elegant past.

St Peter's Church in Kennington Lane was designed by John Loughborough Pearson who was also the architect of the Rochester, Bristol, Peterborough, Lincoln, Truro (Cornwall) and Brisbane (Australia) Cathedrals. Today the church is a community centre and arts venue as well as a church. Next to the St Peter's is Vauxhall City Farm.

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