One of the most memorable shoots of 2016, was a major development by Squire & Partners, at Elephant & Castle in South London. One The Elephant, as it’s known, is a 37 storey residential tower built by Lend Lease. What made the three day shoot particularly interesting, was the wide variety of subject matter; interiors, both of the public areas and the private apartments, architectural exteriors as well as the roof gardens on various levels, and given it’s pivotal position on a major south London junction, its spectacular views across the city from the upper floors. I’ll also never forget the extreme summer weather we experienced, from scorching heat, to a storm of biblical proportions. When the storm hit, we were on the 28th floor, shooting one of the apartments. We could see the weather front rolling in across the city, with the low cloud swallowing the Houses of Parliament, before unleashing a battering of thunder, lightning, and torrential rain. At one point I was out on the balcony, fortunately protected from the rain by the balcony above, when the loudest clap of thunder imaginable sent me and my tripod, jumping in terror back inside the flat.
In comparison with many other developments, this skyscraper makes a positive contribution to the area, with well detailed facades and landscaping, and the lower Pavilion building which anchors it to the streetscape. Elephant & Castle is changing fast, and I hope it continues to the high standard set by Squire & Partners.