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IN THE NEWS
TOUR OF THE MONTH
ON THIS DAY IN LONDON
28th March 1921 Actor Dirk Bogarde is born in Hampstead, London.
28th March 1858 The original Chelsea toll & suspension bridge designed by Thomas Page was opened.
The Coade Stone Lion
Once had a red coat after living outside the Red Lion Brewery
Location: Westminster Bridge, Near County Hall, SE1
Description: The South Bank Coade Stone Lion was originally red in colour, due to it being located at the Red Lion Brewery, surmounting the parapet of the main building. The brewery itself was established in 1837 and was demolished to make way for the Royal Festival Hall.
Made of the artificial stone developed from a secret formula held by Eleanor Coade, the lion survived a fire in 1931 and the blitz, but in February 1949 he finally met his match when he was lifted down, repainted gloss red, and put on a plinth by the Waterloo Station Gate to the Festival site...which was basically down to that helpful chap, George VI.
When the station was made bigger in 1966 the Lion was moved to its current home.
The lion was then renamed the 'South Bank Lion'. The Coade Stone statue was designed by W.F. Woodington, and is 13 feet long and 12 feet high, and weighs over 13 tons.
Looks jolly impressive too.