While haring off to do a meeting at Diageo, I found myself 5 minutes early. And just as I turned off Oxford Street into Vere Street, my eyes fell on this roman looking church on the right
See the artist’s impression, its sort of the same form of building, with the front pillars and elevation. Anyway, this church was previously called as Marylebone Chapel, and was constructed in 1724 by James Gibbs. Mind you, it is no longer a functioning church and now the London Institute for Contemporary Christianity lives there.
James Gibbs, as it happens, was one of the big chaps in the architecture area in the UK, and was trained in Rome. See the connection?
Now the clock was very puzzling at first sight. I simply could not figure out what on earth was on the dial. So just took a photograph and then zoomed in later on. As it so happens, the dial numbers are given in Roman Numerals with some very heavy gilt lettering. No wonder one could not make out what it was showing. What also confused me was the fact that the two clock faces were showing different times, the one on the right shows 11:27 while on the left shows 11:57. Curious, the actual time was 7:50 AM. Must have stopped or something.
Here’s the notice board. Not very sure what this was supposed to stand for. Better one who sounds the trumpet than one hundred prepared to blow the whistle. What does that mean? Its website was down so I could not investigate further.
A notice board which talks about the history. Interesting concept of a Chapel of Ease.
Despite it being a chapel of ease, you can see the stone steps very heavily worn down due to the foot traffic of the parishioners of the past 300 odd years. Just imagine how many feet would have crossed the threshold, the desire to be one with God, to pray to Jesus and St. Peter, to beg for mercy or just to soothe one’s soul. Makes one think, no?
The railing was curious, I have never seen a railing with spikes pointing both ways in a curved fashion. But definitely look old enough to be some kind of historical artefact. But the blocky walls were a bit disappointing.
That’s the rear end of the building. Again, a strange juxtaposition of windows and doors, a central big large stained glass window with two white stone fronted and prominent lintel doors on each side.
The stained glass windows in the wall are supposed to be quite good. Here are some examples. I was not able to get inside the church because of lack of time, but here are two examples:
Well, now was running out of time so turned around to head into the Diageo Building and just burst out laughing at the incongruous sight of a Carlsberg Truck being in front of the Diageo building.
I worked for some time in this building, it has the most amazing work environment ever, can you imagine sitting around in an office surrounded with bottles of beer, vodka, stout, liqueurs and the like? Very difficult to work, I tell you, but despite the fact that it is perhaps the biggest drinks firm in the world, its not Carlsberg, which is perhaps the best beer in the world. Now that’s a Chapel of Ease :)
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