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This London train station has been named one of the coolest in the world



From New York’s art deco Grand Central Station to the futuristic Line 9 in Chengdu, China, there are some real stunners out there when it comes to the world’s most visually-dazzling train stations. But how do you distinguish between ‘pretty nice to look at’, and ‘oh my god this is the most amazing thing I’ve ever seen’? 

One author and architecture lover has done just that. Christopher Beanland, who has just written a book celebrating the world’s finest train stations, has named the planet’s seven coolest railway terminals. And according to Beanland, one London depot is the third best in the world. Not too shabby. 

St Pancras station is officially one of the coolest train stations on the planet. ‘The renovated St Pancras heralded a new railway age in Britain,’ wrote Beanland in the Times. ‘Many of the other new stations we’ve built since the millennium have been cheap and not always cheerful — Leeds is a bit of a car crash and Coventry has erased the good work of the 1960s. St Pancras was a corker, complete with a champagne bar, and art by Tracey Emin that mixes cool with classy.’

Beanland also lauded St Pancras for having a corker of a view of the reimagined Camden Town Hall Annex, which is now the Standard hotel. He also mentioned that the Spice Girls once sang on the stairs of the legendary St Pancras Renaissance Hotel that adjoins the station. 

St Pancras’ magnificent terminus, designed by engineer William Henry Barlow in the nineteenth century, was nearly demolished in the 1960s, but was saved by poet John Betjeman. The writer’s likeness now has pride of place in the station with his statue standing inside. The Eurostar terminal could get a serious makeover in the next couple of years, but the station’s historic elements should be left alone. 

For an alternative point of view, this is Time Out’s list of the most beautiful train stations in the world

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