Yesterday I went on a brilliant guided tour on Isle of Dogs run by Merlin Fulcher of the Architecture Foundation. This was more about the present and the future, than the past. Our 30+ crowd met under West India Quay Station where a proposed new flag for London was unveiled.
The flag is loosely based on a 1914 design which was later updated. Merlin explained that that London’s heraldry disappeared when the GLC was abolished in 1986.
Merlin talked us through the modern developments of Canary Wharf and the architects who had designed the buildings. At the end of the walk we left the Isle of Dogs to finish at Republic, a new venture at Mulberry Place, where a bar and a rooftop terrace enabled us to chat and chill out.
During the walk Merlin had spoken about the corporate monoculture of Canary wharf. He said that there were similarities with the old docks – an overdependence on one trade – which, in the case of the docks, rapidly disappeared.
At Republic Caz Facey took up the story explaining that Republic was aimed at offering high-tech startups much cheaper accommodation than either Shoreditch or Canary Wharf, together with a more creative environment. As well as being about 10 minutes walk from Canary Wharf, Republic is right next door to Europe’s biggest purpose built data centre.