Cities of Science London

Switch to:text only

Faraday sculpture at Elephant and Castle

Michael Faraday memorial

Elephant and Castle

Streetmap Email this article to a friend Print this page

Elephant and Castle's sculpture and substation
Michael Faraday memorial

Huge but often unrecognised: the stainless steel sculpture commemorating Michael Faraday (1791 1867), the chemist and physicist known for his research into electricity and magnetism who lived locally

Faraday name in concreteThe memorial
The steel box houses a transfomer and electricity sub-station for the Northern line. The only clue that it is something more can be found in the concrete beside one of the gates in a fence on the north roundabout.
 
This is more than a box - it is a memorial to the local resident who grew up to become a famous scientist.
 
Faraday sculpture and roundaboutThe designer
The designer of the memorial was Rodney Gordon. The memorial was completed in 1961.
 
Faraday is famous for his electrical discoveries. So the original plan was to clad the structure in glass to reveal the electrical transformer inside. Worries about vandalism led instead to one of the first British examples of the use of stainless steel as a cladding material.
 
Faraday image in Elelphant and Castle subwayLocally born
A portrait of Faraday in one of the many subways is a reminder that Michael was born near the Elephant & Castle. That was on the 22nd September 1791.
 
In the ten years from 1821 to 1831 Faraday made a series of electrical discoveries which led the way to the electric generators and electric motors we rely on today.
 

 

Submitted by: Andrew Hunt, 01 February 2007

Find out more about the origins of the Faraday memorial
~from Wikipedia and click the link to find more about Faraday,
~from a site about risky buildings.
 

See also: Electricity History of science

Project sponsors:

City sponsors:
ASE London Region
Nuffiled Curriculum Centre