The renovation of the Kings Cross area has been continuing around Granary Square, with the details well hidden behind hoardings. The area opened to the public at the weekend, though several of the individual units have yet to complete their work and open their doors.
Back in the 1800s, as rail transport became a key method of transporting goods, this area was the place for the unloading, sorting and redispatching of coal. As new methods were developed, the handling of coal changed and the business moved across the canal. After 1870, the area changed into, primarily, warehousing, with much of it turning into the home of glass manufacturer Bagley, Wild and Company.
Move on a hundred years or more, and the now deserted buildings became home to clubs such as Fabric and Bagley’s (later Canvas) and hosted many a rave party.
Now it is pretty difficult to imagine any of that history, as the buildings have been cleaned and restored. But look closely and you will spot a hint of rust, cast iron columns, sturdy arches, and old fireplace and freight depot signs.
I had a very quick dash around the area today as I was in London briefly, but I’ll definitely be back to investigate further.
Copyright Debbie Smyth, 29 October 2018