Celebrating decades of civic action in Kings Cross

eurotunnel campaign islington chronicle

It’s important to remember the amazing things that a determined group of local people can achieve – in this case in 1989 stopping the Channel Tunnel demolishing half of Kings Cross.  The original plans called for a vast bunker station roughly between Kings Cross and old Thameslink on the Pentonville Road. It would have wiped out almost all of the Victorian buildings.  Local people working with their MP, council and others managed to take on the might of British Rail and sink this plan.  Eventually the route to St Pancras from the East took over.  There is a rich history to the campaign – would be very interested in people’s views in the comments and indeed tagging everyone in the photo.  If you are feeling shy, drop me a mail instead.  Thanks to Tony Rees for providing the cutting.

About William Perrin

Active in Kings Cross London and South Oxfordshire, founder of Talk About Local, helping people find a voice online and a trustee of The Indigo Trust , Good Things Foundation and ThreeSixtyGiving as well as Connect8.
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1 Response to Celebrating decades of civic action in Kings Cross

  1. I was new to Kings Cross then but well remember the campaign. It wasn’t British Rail, it was, as usual, some faceless civil servants, who couldn’t care less about knocking down swathes of homes and offices to make way for their project, a bit like HS2 today which could be built with far less destruction, especially if the main terminus was built at Old Oak Common. In the case of the Kings Cross action, people spent huge sums of their own money on expensive planning consultants to prove that it was unncessary to wipe out most of the lower part of Pentonville Road especially as there was a large piece of unoccupied or redundant land, the Railway Lands, just behind the station.

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