Lecture: 'Pevsner and Victorian architecture'
‘Unbeautiful but of value’: Victorian buildings embodied the characteristics that Pevsner most deplored: rampant individualism, unnecessary ornament, historical fancy dress. He reserves some of his best adjectives for Victorian architecture - 'noisy', ‘ham-fisted’, ‘distressing’, ‘flabby’, ‘rum’. But he also considered it indispensable as the most vivid record of a period when Britain led the civilised world, and under his leadership the Victorian Society fought to conserve it, so hard that they would be credited with having saved a whole century. This lecture looks at his opinions on the Victorians, the battles he won - and some he lost.
Bust of Disraeli, Russell Hotel by Fitzroy Doll - photo George P. Landow/Victorian Web
St Mary Magdalene Paddington by G.E. Street - photo © Rex Harris