New war memorial unveiled at St Pancras International station ahead of the centenary of the end of World War One
Artist and poet Fabian Peake has today unveiled a permanent memorial at St Pancras International, that he designed to remember those who worked at St Pancras station, hotel and good yard who lost their lives in the the two World Wars.
The 4-metre high memorial serves as a poignant reminder of the fundamental role the railways played during the wars and conveying the deeper significance of and connection to those who were killed in conflict associated with the station; reflecting on the lives of those who fought and died serving in the armed forces as well as civilians.
The memorial sits on St Pancras International’s Grand Terrace, close to the location of bomb damage from two prominent air raids on the station in 1918 and 1941 - the first of which claimed the greatest number of casualties suffered in any air raid on a London station during the First World war. Going forward, the artwork will also mark the location of the annual Armistice memorial held at the station on 11th November.
The St Pancras memorial design
Three artists were invited to take part in a competition to design the station’s permanent memorial. After presenting their proposals to a panel comprised of representatives from HS1 and industry partners, Fabian Peake was selected for demonstrating a 'clear engagement with the public and a creative approach to the brief'.
Inspired by the roles of the men and women that worked at St Pancras (Station, Hotel & Goods Yard), the 4-metre tall memorial is comprised of a series of job titles that represent those who left their work to fight and die for their country. Fabian has used vitreous enamel which has historically been used for signage by railway companies and is still frequently used today.
Dyan Crowther, Chief Executive Officer HS1 Ltd (owners of St Pancras International) comments: “There were plans to erect a memorial at St Pancras following the First World War, but a lack of funding in 1921 meant this never happened. The centenary was the perfect moment for all of the station’s rail community to come together to ensure we pay fitting tribute to those who lost their lives in the conflict.”
For more information on the war memorial and other arts, culture and events at St Pancras International, visit the St Pancras website