Thursday, August 20, 2009

Stained Glass Windows at Victoria Terminus

Victoria Terminus (Or, VT, as it is known to many) has a new look. Most parts of the station – through which I have passed two times a day for the past nearly 20 years, that’s nearly 12,000 times, including the day on which terrorists killed nearly fifty people there half an hour after I passed through – has been cleaned, brushed, and washed to reveal palimpsests of beauty that has lain beneath the grime for centuries. I still call it VT with a reason, how can you change something which you have such a long association with? When I was in Delhi everyone referred to Connaught Place as Connaught Place (Or, CP) and not as Rajiv Chowk. I am one of those who hang on to tradition.

The station was designed by Frederick William Stevens, a consulting architect in 1887-1888. He received as payment 16.14 lakh rupees. Stevens earned the commission to construct the station after a masterpiece watercolour sketch by draughtsman Axel Haig. The final design bears some resemblance to St Pancras station in London. More here.

I caught these stained glass windows recently. Good, no?

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