List of public art formerly in London

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This page lists public artworks which used to exist in London, but which have either been destroyed or removed to another place. Works which have been moved within London are not included, nor are temporary installations such as those on the Fourth plinth at Trafalgar Square. However, where one statue has been removed and replaced by another similar one, the former is included in this list.

Works removed or lost[edit]

Image Title / subject Location and
Date Artist / designer Architect / other Type Designation Notes
Old Charing Cross.jpg
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The Charing Cross
Eleanor of Castile
Charing Cross 1291–
c. 1294
Alexander Abingdon Richard of Crundale and Roger of Crundale Commemorative cross N/A The costliest and most elaborate of the Eleanor crosses marking the sites where the Queen’s funeral cortège rested on the way to her burial at Westminster Abbey. The master mason Richard of Crundale died in 1293, after which the work was taken up by his brother Roger. The cross was destroyed under the orders of Parliament in 1647.[1]

Statue of George I and Hogarth's House, 1790 (detail).jpg Statue of George I Leicester Square 1722 c. 1722 John Nost the Elder N/A Equestrian statue N/A A gilded lead replica of Nost's bronze equestrian statue, erected in Dublin in 1722 and now outside the Barber Institute, Birmingham. The horse was cast from Hubert Le Sueur's Charles I at Charing Cross. Purchased at the Cannons sale of 1747 and installed in the Square the following year. From the 1780s the statue was neglected and frequently vandalised; by the late nineteenth century only the horse remained, which was sold for £16.[2]
Statue of George I Grosvenor Square 1722 c. 1722 John Nost the Elder N/A Equestrian statue N/A Also of lead, this was probably from the same model as the Leicester Square statue. Bought from Nost's workshop by Sir Richard Grosvenor in 1725.[3]
Statue of Prince William, Duke of Cumberland Cavendish Square 1770 Sir Henry Cheere, 1st Baronet N/A Equestrian statue N/A Cheere produced a bronzed lead statuette of the Duke of Cumberland (now in the National Army Museum) in around 1745. In 1770 a full-scale statue differing slightly from this model was erected in Cavendish Square; it was removed in 1868 and melted down.[4] In the summer of 2012 a replica made of soap by the Korean artist Meekyoung Shin was installed on the plinth (still in situ) and allowed to erode over the course of a year.[5] The display was later extended by a further six months to the end of 2013 and other versions were installed in the grounds of the South Korean National Museum of Contemporary Art[6] and at MoCA Taipei.[7]
King's Cross statue of George IV.jpg The King's Cross
George IV
Kings Cross

51°31′51″N 0°07′17″W / 51.5307°N 0.1215°W / 51.5307; -0.1215 (The King's Cross)
1836 ? Stephen Geary Memorial with sculptures N/A Intended as a national memorial to George IV, this structure gave its name to the district of Kings Cross. It was much criticised and was demolished in 1845.[8]
Figurehead from HMS Britomart Above door of 3 Station Approach, near Kew Gardens station 1840s unknown N/A Architectural sculpture N/A The figurehead was installed above the shop in 1960 by its owner, Ian Sheridan, a descendant of the playwright Richard Brinsley Sheridan, in 1960. He had salvaged it from the wreckage of the ship after it was destroyed by fire in the 1930s. In the 2000s, after the shop changed hands, the figurehead was removed.[9]

Wellington Monument, Aldershot - - 1743310.jpg
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Statue of Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington Wellington Arch, Hyde Park Corner 1840–1846 Matthew Cotes Wyatt Decimus Burton Equestrian statue Grade II Wyatt’s statue was installed on the Wellington Arch on 30 September 1846. It was regarded as a failure on aesthetic grounds and its gigantic size‍—‌30 ft high and 26 ft wide‍—‌was felt to be excessive for the commemoration of a single individual. It was removed to the military town of Aldershot, Hampshire, when the arch’s orientation was changed in 1883.[10]
Statue of James McGrigor Atterbury Street, Millbank (1909–2003) 1865 Matthew Noble N/A Statue Grade II Unveiled 18 November 1865 at the Royal Hospital, Chelsea. Moved in 1909 to the newly built Royal Army Medical College, which became the Chelsea College of Arts in 2003. The statue was then relocated to the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst.[11]
Hogarth bust (Leicester Square).jpg Bust of William Hogarth Leicester Square 1874 Joseph Durham James Knowles Bust Grade II One of four busts of historical residents of the area, installed as part of Knowles’s redesign of the gardens, which were removed in 2010–12. This bust originally stood in the south-eastern corner of the square, near where Hogarth had a house from 1733 until his death in 1764,[12] but moved to the north-east in the 1989–92 refurbishment of the square.[13]
Bust of John Hunter, Leicester Square (2206660627).jpg Bust of John Hunter Leicester Square 1874 Thomas Woolner James Knowles Bust Grade II Hunter lived at 28 Leicester Square from 1783 to 1793.[14] Albert Grant, the owner of Leicester Square in 1874, originally commissioned Woolner to sculpt a bust of Samuel Johnson, who frequented Reynolds’s house on the square (q.v.). Grant was, however, persuaded by the Royal College of Surgeons to honour Hunter instead. The bust originally stood in the north-eastern corner of the square but changed places with the bust of Hogarth in the south-east when the square was refurbished in 1989–92.[13]
Bust of Newton - Leicester Square Gardens, London.jpg Bust of Isaac Newton Leicester Square 1874 William Calder Marshall James Knowles Bust Grade II Newton lived nearby, on 35 St Martin's Street, from 1710 to 1725.[15] The bust was formerly in the south-western corner of the gardens.[13]

Bust of Reynolds - Leicester Square Gardens, London.jpg Bust of Joshua Reynolds Leicester Square 1874 Henry Weekes James Knowles Bust Grade II Formerly stood in the north-western corner of the gardens, a site close to 47 Leicester Square,[16] where Reynolds lived from 1760 until his death in 1792.[17]
Poets' Fountain
Geoffrey Chaucer, William Shakespeare and John Milton
Hamilton Place 1875 Thomas Thornycroft N/A Fountain with sculptures N/A Inaugurated 9 July 1875. A multi-figure composition including figures of the Muses and statues of the three poets crowned with a personification of Fame; all but the last of these have been lost since the fountain was dismantled in 1948, having sustained bomb damage in World War II.[18]
Afghan and South African war memorial, Woolwich - - 971900.jpg Afghan and Zulu War Memorial Repository Road

51°28′57″N 0°03′16″E / 51.4824°N 0.0545°E / 51.4824; 0.0545 (Afghan and South African War Memorial)
1881/3? Victor Gleichen N/A Megalithoid with sculpture Grade II Moved to Larkhill Garrison, Wiltshire, at some point after October 2008.[19][20]
Memorial to Henry Fawcett Vauxhall Park 1893 George Tinworth N/A Sculptural group N/A Unveiled 7 June 1893. The terracotta sculpture, situated close by Fawcett's home, was a gift from the pottery manufacturer Henry Doulton. Removed and destroyed in 1955.[21]
Statue of Lord Strathnairn (cropped).jpg Statue of Hugh Rose, 1st Baron Strathnairn Intersection of Knightsbridge and Brompton Road 1895 Edward Onslow Ford N/A Equestrian statue N/A Unveiled 19 June 1895 by the Duke of Grafton. Cast from guns taken during the Indian Mutiny, of which Strathnairn was one of the main suppressors. Taken down in 1931 during work on a new subway for Knightsbridge tube station and kept in storage until it was sold by Westminster Council in 1964, it now stands in Liphook, Hampshire.[22]
Statue of Queen Victoria Doulton (from 1901, Royal Doulton) pottery works, Albert Embankment 1900 John Broad N/A Statue N/A The terracotta statue stood at this site until 1910, when it was removed for roadworks and destroyed. Other statues from the same mould went to Newbury and Gravesend.[23]
The Sunbathers Royal Festival Hall 1951 Peter Laszlo Peri Architectural sculpture N/A Disappeared after the exhibition; relocated in 2016. The maquette for this work is in the Leeds Art Gallery.[24][25]
La Belle Sauvage
Red Lion Square 1956 David McFall N/A Statue N/A A recumbent nude statue of Pocahontas. Commissioned by the publisher Cassell and based on that firm's colophon, which referred to its originally having been based near Ludgate Hill where Pocantontas had once lived.[26] (See the article Bell Savage Inn.) This was later removed to Greycoat Place, Victoria, and then to Villiers House, Strand. It is thought to have been sold at auction in 1996.[27]
Girls Playing Netball Barnsbury (Girls) Secondary School, Islington 1958 Trevor Tennant N/A Sculptural group N/A Missing since 1999, when the part of the school where the sculpture was located was sold off.[25]
Meridian State House, High Holborn 1958–1960 Barbara Hepworth N/A Sculpture N/A The work was commissioned for the site. In 1990 State House was demolished and Meridian was bought for the Donald M. Kendall Sculpture Gardens at the international headquarters of PepsiCo in Purchase, New York[28]
Cock Crown Woods School, Eltham 1959 Bernard Meadows N/A Sculpture N/A Sold at auction in 2004.[25]
The Watchers University of Roehampton 1960 Lynn Chadwick N/A Sculptural group Grade II In 2006 one of the three figures was stolen.[25]
Faun with Goose Sarel House, Tower Hamlets 1960 Georg Ehrlich N/A Sculpture N/A The sculptor's first commission from the London County Council, this work went missing during redevelopment of the site in the early 2000s.[25]
Birdman Sedgehill School, Lewisham 1960 Elisabeth Frink N/A Statue N/A [25]
Birds in Flight Elm Court School, Tulse Hill 1960 Heinz Henghes N/A Sculpture N/A The sculpture, designed to be suitable for children to handle, was stolen from the school shortly after it was unveiled.[25]
Drinking Calf Garratt Green School, Wandsworth 1961 Georg Ehrlich N/A Sculpture N/A [25]
The Swans Ashburton Estate, Wandsworth 1961 Gertrude Hermes N/A Sculptural group N/A Stolen in the 1980s.[25]
Mother and Child Sydenham Hill Estate 1961 Karin Jonzen N/A Statue N/A A commission by the London County Council, situated outside the estate's community centre, where a mother and baby clinic was held. In 1970 the work was reported stolen.[25]
Neighbourly Encounter Silverwood Estate, Southwark 1961 Uli Nimptsch N/A Sculpture N/A First exhibited at the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition, the work disappeared soon after its installation on the estate.[25]
Stag Statue in Stag Place - - 1152206.jpg Stag Stag Place, now Cardinal Place, Victoria 1963 Edward Bainbridge Copnall Howard, Fairbairn & Partners Sculpture N/A A late addition to the complex, the sculpture was intended to recall the Stag Brewery which had stood on the site. Removed in 1997 to the Kent Millennium River Walk, Maidstone.[29]
Fountains at the base of Centrepoint Tower, New Oxford Street, London WC2 - - 398522.jpg
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Fountains Centre Point 1963 Jupp Dernbach-Mayen Richard Seifert and Partners Fountains Grade II Inspired by fountains the sculptor had seen at the Alhambra in Granada. Removed in 2009 when the plaza in front of Centre Point was pedestrianised as part of construction work for Crossrail. The fountains were given to the Architectural Association for installation at Hooke Park, the AA's school for rural architecture in Dorset.[30]
A Boy on a Dolphin Roupell Court Old People's Home, Lambeth 1963 Uli Nimptsch N/A Bas-relief N/A [25]
Relief sculpture Northern Polytechnic Institute (now London Metropolitan University), Holloway Road, Islington 1964 William Mitchell Relief sculpture N/A Demolished in 2004. London Metropolitan University's Graduate School, designed by Daniel Libeskind, now stands on the site.[25]
Sun terrace Hampstead Civic Centre 1964 William Mitchell Basil Spence Sculpted concrete sun terrace N/A Demolished in 2002.[25]
Bolted Flat Lollard School, Southwark 1966 John Hoskin Sculpture N/A Dismantled in the late 1980s or early 1990s.[25]
Two Forms (Divided Circle) by Barbara Hepworth in Dulwich (6112761980).jpg Two Forms (Divided Circle) Dulwich Park 1969 Barbara Hepworth N/A Sculpture N/A Stolen in December 2011.[25]
Hayward Gallery London.jpg Neon Tower Roof of the Hayward Gallery 1972 Philip Vaughan N/A Sculpture N/A The sculpture stood in situ from 1972 to 2008, when it was taken down for renovation. Although the gallery has stated that it was originally commissioned as a temporary installation, the artist has disputed this and called for the work to be reinstated permanently.[31]
The Towers of Hackney 1970s – 2009 N/A N/A
Year of the Child Drinking Fountain Hyde Park 1981 Theo Crosby N/A Drinking fountain with sculpture N/A A memorial to the Great Children’s Party held in the park in 1979,[32] removed for restoration in 2005 due to its poor condition.[33]
Techtonic II Opposite the entrance to Tower Three, London School of Economics 1984 Haydn Llewellyn Davies N/A Sculpture N/A Part of Louis Odette’s 2005 bequest of sculptures to the LSE.[34] As of 2013 the sculpture is no longer at this location.
111 Buckingham Palace Road.JPG Gates 111 Buckingham Palace Road

51°29′43″N 0°08′45″W / 51.4952°N 0.1457°W / 51.4952; -0.1457
1986 Giuseppe Lund N/A Gates N/A Gates of jagged aluminium.[35] As of 2017 they are no longer at this location.
Metal statue, High Holborn, WC1 - - 1271875.jpg
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The Artist as Hephaestus 34–36 High Holborn 1987 Eduardo Paolozzi N/A Statue N/A Commissioned by the London and Paris Property Group for the site, which was the front façade of their new offices. The plaster and polystyrene model for the statue, which is a self-portrait, is in the National Portrait Gallery.[36] Sold at auction by Bonhams in 2012.[37]
Statues of Gary Glitter, Jimi Hendrix, Buddy Holly, Michael Jackson, Mick Jagger, Elton John, Annie Lennox, Madonna and Diana Ross Rock Circus (the London Pavilion), Piccadilly Circus c. 1989 James Butler Statues [38]
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Statue of Terence Cuneo London Waterloo station 2004 Philip Jackson N/A Statue N/A [39]
One nation under CCTV 1.jpg
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One Nation Under CCTV Newman Street, Fitzrovia 2008 Banksy N/A Mural N/A To produce this work Banksy erected and dismantled three storeys of scaffolding without being observed, despite the site being behind a tall fence and in full view of a CCTV camera.[40] Westminster City Council destroyed the work as an example to graffiti artists.[41]
Michael Jackson statue 23444.JPG Statue of Michael Jackson Craven Cottage, Fulham 2011 ? N/A Statue N/A In 2014 the statue was moved to the National Football Museum in Manchester.[42]
Alien - David Breuer-Weil.jpg Alien Grosvenor Gardens, Westminster 2012 David Breuer-Weil N/A Sculpture N/A In 2015 the sculpture was moved to the National Trust property of Mottisfont in Hampshire.[43]

Works replaced by replicas[edit]

Image Title / subject Location and
Date Artist / designer Architect / other Type Designation Notes
Statue of Sir Hans Sloane. Wellcome L0003974.jpg Statue of Hans Sloane Chelsea Physic Garden 1732–1737 John Michael Rysbrack N/A Statue N/A Commissioned in 1732, installed in a greenhouse in 1737 and moved to the centre of the garden in 1748. The statue deteriorated over time and was moved to the British Museum in 1983. A fibreglass replica was installed in its place; this too deteriorated and was replaced by a copy made of jesmonite.[44]
Woman with Fish Frank Dobson Square Tower Hamlets.jpg Woman with Fish Cleveland Estate, Tower Hamlets (original); Millwall Park (replica) 1959 Frank Dobson N/A Sculpture N/A [25]
Alfred Salter Statue.jpg
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Dr Salter's Daydream
Alfred Salter
Cherry Gardens, Bermondsey

51°30′02″N 0°03′35″W / 51.50061°N 0.05973°W / 51.50061; -0.05973 (Dr Salter's Daydream)
2014 Diane Gorvin N/A Sculptures N/A The seated statue of Dr Salter was stolen in 2011, after which the figures of his daughter Joyce and her cat were taken into safekeeping by Southwark Council.[45] The new work includes an additional sculpture portraying Salter's wife, Ada.[46]
  • The statue of Queen Anne by Francis Bird which stood outside St. Paul's Cathedral was damaged by a lunatic in the 19th century, and as it was in any case in rather poor condition, it was removed, together with the four statues at its base, and replaced by a copy, partly the work of Richard Belt. The original was moved to a location near St Leonards in Sussex.
  • The Victoria Palace Theatre had a figure on its roof of a dancer (possibly representing Anna Pavlova, by some accounts). It was taken down to protect it from the bombing during World War II, and apparently was mislaid as a result. A replica of the original was installed in 2006.

Works removed and subsequently returned[edit]

  • The statue of Charles II in Soho Square was removed for many years to Grim's Dyke, the estate of W. S. Gilbert, and returned to its current position after the death of Gilbert's widow, who had willed it back to the square. It was originally accompanied by four other statues representing British rivers, and the current whereabouts of these is unknown; they have probably been destroyed or buried.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Gater, G. H.; Wheeler, E. P., eds. (1935), "The statue of Charles I and site of the Charing Cross", Survey of London: volume 16: St Martin-in-the-Fields I: Charing Cross, Institute of Historical Research, retrieved 10 October 2012 
  2. ^ Ward-Jackson 2011, p. 112
  3. ^ Ward-Jackson 2011, p. xx
  4. ^ National Art Collections Fund (1992), Annual Report, pp. 97–98 
  5. ^ White, Niamh (24 July 2012), "'Written in Soap: A Plinth Project' Meekyoung Shin's newest work is unveiled", SHOWstudio, retrieved 22 September 2014 
  6. ^ Gowman, Philip (21 July 2013), "Meekyoung Shin shortlisted for Korea Artist Prize 2013", London Korean Links, retrieved 14 November 2013 
  7. ^ "About", Written in Soap: A Plinth Project, retrieved 22 September 2014 
  8. ^ Blackwood 1989, p. 50.
  9. ^ Reed, Nicholas (1992). Richmond and Kew Green: A Souvenir Guide. Lilburne Press. p. 43. ISBN 0951525867. 
  10. ^ Ward-Jackson 2011, pp. xxv–xxix, 90
  11. ^ Ward-Jackson 2011, pp. 6–7
  12. ^ Thornbury, Walter (1878), "Leicester Square", Old and New London: Volume 3, Institute of Historical Research, retrieved 3 April 2012 
  13. ^ a b c Ward-Jackson 2011, p. 117
  14. ^ "Leicester Square", The Georgian Index, retrieved 21 October 2011 
  15. ^ McNab, Andrew, "35 St Martin′s Street",, archived from the original on 1 March 2012, retrieved 21 October 2011 
  16. ^ Ward-Jackson 2011, p. 115
  17. ^ Sheppard, F. H. W., ed. (1966), "Leicester Square, West Side: Leicester Estate: Nos 43–54 Leicester Square", Survey of London: volumes 33 and 34: St Anne Soho, Institute of Historical Research, retrieved 21 October 2011 
  18. ^ Ward-Jackson 2011, pp. xxxii–xxxiii
  19. ^ "Royal Artillery‍—‌Afghan War and Wars in South Africa". Imperial War Museums. Retrieved 1 September 2015. 
  20. ^ "Afghan and Zulu Wars Memorial", National Recording Project, Public Monuments & Sculpture Association, retrieved 1 September 2015 
  21. ^ Blackwood 1989, p. 351
  22. ^ Greenacombe, John, ed. (2000), "Knightsbridge Green Area: Scotch Corner and the High Road", Survey of London: volume 45: Knightsbridge, Institute of Historical Research, retrieved 24 September 2014 
  23. ^ Blackwood, John (1989), London’s Immortals: The Complete Outdoor Commemorative Statues, London and Oxford: Savoy Press , p. 66
  24. ^ Maquette for Festival Hall Relief; the Sunbathers, Leeds Art Fund, retrieved 13 January 2016 
  25. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q Help Find Our Missing Art, Historic England, retrieved 13 January 2016 
  26. ^ "Red Lion Square Gardens", London Gardens Online, London Parks & Gardens Trust, retrieved 27 May 2015 
  27. ^ "1955/4 Pocahontas "La Belle Sauvage"", David McFall R.A. (1919–1988): Sculptor, retrieved 27 May 2015 
  28. ^ "Meridian", Barbara Hepworth, retrieved 18 April 2015 
  29. ^ Ward-Jackson 2011, pp. 15–16
  30. ^ "Centre Point Fountains to be relocated to Dorset", 3rd Dimension, Public Monuments and Sculpture Association, 6 May 2015, retrieved 15 May 2018 
  31. ^ Coldwell, Will (18 March 2013), "Incandescent: artist Philip Vaughan's fury after Hayward Gallery switches off his Neon Tower light sculpture", The Independent, retrieved 31 January 2016 
  32. ^ Land Use Consultants (2005), Hyde Park Management Plan (PDF), The Royal Parks, p. 48, archived from the original (PDF) on 14 July 2014, retrieved 6 July 2014 
  33. ^ Moore, Matthew (15 June 2010), "St James' Park to receive 'stunning' new 20ft fountain", The Telegraph, retrieved 13 July 2014 
  34. ^ Ward-Jackson 2011, pp. 120–122
  35. ^ Bradley & Pevsner 2003, p. 739
  36. ^ Sir Eduardo Paolozzi (British, 1924–2005) The Artist as Hephaestus 264 cm. (104 in.) high, Bonhams, retrieved 18 April 2015 
  37. ^ Carrier, Dan (15 November 2012), "Council's legal action threat in bid to retrieve 'public artwork' sculpture sold at auction for £140,000", Camden New Journal, retrieved 18 April 2015 
  38. ^ Cooper, Rob, "The Rock Circus Statues", Art & Architecture, Courtauld Institute of Art, retrieved 9 May 2018 
  39. ^ "Terence Cuneo statue removed from Waterloo Station", London SE1, 25 July 2014, retrieved 24 June 2016 
  40. ^ "Banksy "One Nation Under CCTV"", Hypebeast, 15 April 2008, retrieved 12 January 2012 
  41. ^ Council orders Banksy art removal, BBC News, 24 October 2008, retrieved 12 January 2013 
  42. ^ Michael Jackson statue moves to National Football Museum, BBC Sport, 6 May 2014, retrieved 3 November 2014 
  43. ^ "Breuer-Weil's 'Alien' to land at Mottisfont | David Breuer Weil". Retrieved 2016-01-31. 
  44. ^ Matthews 2012, p. 159.
  45. ^ Statue Of Dr Salter Stolen From Bermondsey, Londonist, 24 November 2011, retrieved 10 May 2014 
  46. ^ "Dr. Salter's Daydream", Philip Bews • Diane Gorvin Sculpture for public sites, retrieved 30 May 2018 


  • Blackwood, John (1989), London's Immortals: The Complete Outdoor Commemorative Statues, London and Oxford: Savoy Press 
  • Matthews, Peter (2012), London's Statues and Monuments, Botley: Shire Publications 
  • Ward-Jackson, Philip (2011), Public Sculpture of Historic Westminster: Volume 1, Public Sculpture of Britain, Liverpool: Liverpool University Press