London’s Paternoster Square on a Rainy Day

Paternoster Square in the City of London is a great place to take a stroll, perhaps grab a coffee, and enjoy the old and new buildings that surround it. Not least of these is the neighbouring St. Paul’s Cathedral.

Paternoster Square from the dome of St. Paul's Cathedral

Paternoster Square from the dome of St. Paul’s Cathedral

And on a rainy afternoon in early January, this normally buzzing open space can be quiet and peaceful. A place to take a breath in the heart of the City.

A deserted Paternoster Square on a wet January afternoon The building on the right is the new London Stock Exchange

A deserted Paternoster Square on a wet January afternoon
The building on the right is the new London Stock Exchange

During the Blitz of 1940-41, London was pounded by German bombs. In the City of London, St. Paul’s Cathedral suffered only minor damage, relatively speaking (learn more in Jaspa’s Journey 2: The Pride of London). But the area surrounding Sir Christopher Wren’s masterpiece was largely destroyed.

Entering Paternoster Square from Paternoster Row through Wrens' Temple Bar, which once marked the western edge of the City of London on Fleet Street

Entering Paternoster Square from Paternoster Row through Wren’s Temple Bar, which once marked the western edge of the City of London on Fleet Street

Detail on the Temple Bar stone arch

Detail on the Temple Bar stone arch

Temple Bar from the Paternoster Square side

Temple Bar from the Paternoster Square side

The ugly 1960s redevelopment of the area north of the cathedral, off Paternoster Row, was hugely criticised, most famously by Prince Charles. This paved the way (no pun intended) for a re-redevelopment of Paternoster Square.

This lovely bronze sculpture by Dame Elisabeth Frink is officially named Paternoster, but many people know it as the Shepherd and Sheep

This lovely bronze sculpture by Dame Elisabeth Frink is officially named Paternoster, but many people know it as the Shepherd and Sheep

The 75 foot tall Paternoster Square Column imitates a Corinthian column I guess it must be hollow because it apparently ventilates the service road beneath

The 75 foot tall Paternoster Square Column imitates a Corinthian column
I guess it must be hollow because it apparently ventilates the service road beneath

I don’t know what Prince Charles thinks of the final result, but I really like it. Paternoster Square today is open and airy, and combines buildings and designs from a variety of periods and styles. And as I said, it provides spectacular views of St. Paul’s!

St Paul's Cathedral looms above the buildings on the south side of Paternoster Square

St Paul’s Cathedral looms above the buildings on the south side of Paternoster Square

The Dome of St. Paul's

The Dome of St. Paul’s

This post was inspired by the photo themes of New and Old from Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge and Quiet from Ailsa of Where’s My Backpack?

the-great-migration-coverthe-pride-of-london-coverThe first two Jaspa’s Journey adventures, The Great Migration and The Pride of London, are now available in both paperback and ebook formats! Click here for more information. The third instalment, Jaspa’s Waterloo, is scheduled to be released by Speaking Volumes early this year.

Jaspa’s Journey: Perfect for Kids 8 – 80!

If you’re the sort of person that isn’t put off by bad weather on your travels, why not sign up and follow my continuing Journeys here at Jaspa’s Journal (on WordPress or Bloglovin’), or through my website, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Tumblr?jaspas-journey-logo-bigger-bucket

 

Advertisements

About Jaspa

Star of my own award-winning adventure novels, Jaspa's Journey. Geocaching addict & F1 fan. Adventure Journeyer & blogger extraordinaire. Check out my website: www.jaspasjourney.com And don’t forget to download the books and see what the buzz is all about!
This entry was posted in History, Jaspa's Journey, Photography, Travel, United Kingdom and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

16 Responses to London’s Paternoster Square on a Rainy Day

  1. Rain or shine those buildings still look gorgeous!

  2. angloswiss says:

    I grew up in London (Bethnal Green) from 1946-1966 and have seen many changes. I did not know about this Paternoster Square, but it makes me sad to see what it is. I am not impressed. The atmosphere has gone. My dad worked in the city as a messenger boy for Lloyd’s insurance in the 1930’s, it was his first job. He knew every nook and crannie of the city and often took me on walks through the little alleys. And now it has all gone, the old narrow paths smelling of brick when it rained, the paving stones worn by the feet of the businessmen. It makes me feel sad. Of course, progress must be, but Paternoster Square reminds me more of a polished chess board. RIP the Stock Exchasnge, how I will miss it if I ever see London again – and I knew London very well.

    • Jaspa says:

      I’m sorry to hear you don’t like Paternoster Square. From what I understand, it was originally an area of interesting alleys like you describe, but the Blitz put paid to that. And while I accept today’s Square might not be to everyone’s taste, I still feel it’s has to be better than the 1960s development it replaced.

      • angloswiss says:

        The interesting little alleys were still there when I left London in the early sixties. The raids were more concentrated on the dock areas. I remember the bus ride from Liverpool Street to Oxford Street and seeing many bombed remains from the war, which have now disappeared of course.

  3. Cee Neuner says:

    Terrific post for this week. Thanks. 😀

  4. Pat B says:

    I loved seeing these. Year’s ago we got to visit London and St. Paul’s Cathedral. What a nice vacation that was.

  5. restlessjo says:

    I love the name! So distinguished-sounding. 🙂 Nice work, Jaspa!

  6. atkokosplace says:

    Wow! Love the photographs. The architecture is stunning! Happy new year!

  7. Wow, how did you get the bird eye view shot of the square? stunning 🙂

I'd love to hear what you've got to say!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s