Croydon Clocktower






        Photos taken 14th Feb. 09.  Carshalton  Croydon More  Croydon Airport  Croydon Property Maintenance/Repairs  Art Store  Search Site
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        The Photos
        F E B R U A R Y  0 9


        There's not alot of interesting buildings in the centre of Croydon. Most of it is made up of post-war prefab-like rubbish, grey dustbins that reach the sky. Croydon seems to be in a permanent state of prefab, with yet more rubbish being created to add to a skyline of depressingly grey awfulness. Keeping your eyes at ground-level ain't much better either. It's chavtown: chavs to the right of you; chavs to the left; chavs seemingly every bleedin' where. So it's best to keep your eyes looking up and above the gaudy shop signs that could place you on any high st in the country. If you do so then you may be surprised to find a beautiful old building looking desperate to break free from the ugly new buildings all around, buildings that appear like unwanted distant cousins

        If the old buildings could talk then they would say: "Why couldn't we be in Richmond?"

        I have photographed a few old buildings on the High St., Beanos, Croydon Clocktower and the obligatory Fairfield Halls.

        I must confess I've never been a great lover of Beanos (in Middle Street) though it is sad to see it closing down. Yes, it was the biggest 2nd-hand record-store this side of Jupiter and yes it was unique ('independant store' is an increasing rarity on any high st, I grant you) but boy were the prices steep! Now I know the owner used to hate anyone coming in quoting 'Record Collector' prices and they had to be higher than that if only to pay for staff wages etc. but did they have to be that high? I mean 'I'd better think of getting a 2nd-mortgage' high! Still, it wasn't Zavvi/Virgin and that is reason enough to mourn it.

        Croydon Clocktower on Katherine Street is really the jewel in the crown of Croydon. Well, virtually its only jewel. That and the neighbouring Braithwaite Hall to be more accurate.

        Built in 1895 as Croydon's Town Hall, the complex now also houses the Croydon Museum and art galleries, the David Lean Cinema, the Central Library, the Tourist Information Centre, the Braithwaite Hall and the Clocktower Café. So now you know.

        Fairfield Halls is as nondescript as the photo suggests. It's a kind of Southbank without the river. These days, it's one of those venues favoured by fading 80s pop stars who are in that difficult position of not being obscure enough to be completely forgotten but not being big enough to be completely remembered. Outcome? Gigs at those souless small venues technically in London but technically not in Hammersmith.

        The Towers That Ate People

        I took the last photos of the various towers around Croydon on the top deck of the 157 bus on 18th February 2009 which was on diversion. Bear in mind that it was full of chavs tucking into their chicken meals (and boy do they get hungry), so be thankful that the photos don't come with smellavision. Or sound effects for that matter as hip/rap/talking over-another-artist's-song-type-music was being pumped from a variety of music-listening-devices from those aforementioned chavs. Ah! George Michael has alot to answer for. He it was who introduced rap to the world (made in Bushey, Herts, and not New York, NY, as some believe) through his former popular group, Wham!. I wonder when in c.1982 he and his partner in crime, Andrew, appeared on TOTP and began their single Young Guns with the rap:

          "Well I hadn't seen your face around town awhile,
          So I greeted you, with a knowing smile"

        Just what it would lead to? A whole generation unable to speak a sentence without rhyming.

        Food for thought, Mr Michael, I feel.

        But I digress.

        Hover over each thumbnail image for details on picture and click on each to open a bigger picture. Most of these photos are available as signed prints. Please e-mail for details. I'd be grateful if the photos are not used without prior permission. Please e-mail any request for usage or to obtain any photo without the copyright wording.

        - Paul Page (2009)

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        Manipulated
        I M A G E S


        Alleyway between Tamworth Rd. and North End, Croydon - Feb. 09 North End, Croydon - Feb. 09 Allders, North End, Croydon - Feb. 09 Corner of North End & George St., Croydon - Feb. 09 Corner of North End & George St., Croydon - Feb. 09 Corner of North End & George St., Croydon - Feb. 09 Corner of North End & George St., Croydon - Feb. 09 Tony Gents Hairdresser, 1 Middle Street, Croydon - Feb. 09
        Beanos Record Store, Middle Street, Croydon - Feb. 09 Beanos Record Store, Middle Street, Croydon - Feb. 09 Surrey St., Croydon - Feb. 09 Scarbrook Road, Croydon - Feb. 09 Croydon Clocktower from Scarbrook Road, Croydon - Feb. 09 Croydon Clocktower, Katharine St., Croydon - Feb. 09 Braithwaite Hall, Katharine St., Croydon - Feb. 09 Croydon Clocktower, Katharine St., Croydon - Feb. 09
        Braithwaite Hall, Katharine St., Croydon - Feb. 09 Croydon Clocktower, Katharine St., Croydon - Feb. 09 Croydon Clocktower, Katharine St., Croydon - Feb. 09 Croydon Clocktower, Katharine St., Croydon - Feb. 09 Croydon Clocktower, Katharine St., Croydon - Feb. 09 Croydon Clocktower, Katharine St., Croydon - Feb. 09 Fairfield Halls, Park Lane, Croydon - Feb. 09 Ministry of Truth or Croydon Council Town Hall from the top deck of the 157 bus on diversion, Park Lane, Croydon - Feb. 09
        Chocolate Cathedral or Nestle Tower from the top deck of the 157 bus on diversion, Park Lane, Croydon - Feb. 09 Fairfield Halls from the top deck of the 157 bus on diversion, Park Lane, Croydon - Feb. 09 Ministry of Truth or Croydon Council Town Hall from the top deck of the 157 bus on diversion, Park Lane, Croydon - Feb. 09 Chocolate Cathedral or Nestle Tower from the top deck of the 157 bus on diversion, Park Lane, Croydon - Feb. 09 Fairfield Halls from the top deck of the 157 bus on diversion, Park Lane, Croydon - Feb. 09


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        Untouched
        I M A G E S


        Alleyway between Tamworth Rd. and North End, Croydon - Feb. 09 North End, Croydon - Feb. 09 Allders, North End, Croydon - Feb. 09 Corner of North End & George St., Croydon - Feb. 09 Corner of North End & George St., Croydon - Feb. 09 Corner of North End & George St., Croydon - Feb. 09 Corner of North End & George St., Croydon - Feb. 09 Tony Gents Hairdresser, 1 Middle Street, Croydon - Feb. 09
        Beanos Record Store, Middle Street, Croydon - Feb. 09 Beanos Record Store, Middle Street, Croydon - Feb. 09 Surrey St., Croydon - Feb. 09 Scarbrook Road, Croydon - Feb. 09 Croydon Clocktower from Scarbrook Road, Croydon - Feb. 09 Croydon Clocktower, Katharine St., Croydon - Feb. 09 Braithwaite Hall, Katharine St., Croydon - Feb. 09 Croydon Clocktower, Katharine St., Croydon - Feb. 09
        Braithwaite Hall, Katharine St., Croydon - Feb. 09 Croydon Clocktower, Katharine St., Croydon - Feb. 09 Croydon Clocktower, Katharine St., Croydon - Feb. 09 Croydon Clocktower, Katharine St., Croydon - Feb. 09 Croydon Clocktower, Katharine St., Croydon - Feb. 09 Croydon Clocktower, Katharine St., Croydon - Feb. 09 Fairfield Halls, Park Lane, Croydon - Feb. 09
        Ministry of Truth or Croydon Council Town Hall from the top deck of the 157 bus on diversion, Park Lane, Croydon - Feb. 09 Chocolate Cathedral or Nestle Tower from the top deck of the 157 bus on diversion, Park Lane, Croydon - Feb. 09 Fairfield Halls from the top deck of the 157 bus on diversion, Park Lane, Croydon - Feb. 09



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