St. Paul’s Cathedral in Central London really is one of the defining landmarks on the city’s skyline.
The current cathedral was designed in the late 17th century by Sir Christopher Wren, stands at over 365 feet, and even has its own Tube station.
But did you know there are actually two St. Paul’s Cathedrals in London?
READ MORE: How a deep clean of Buckingham Palace, St Paul’s Cathedral and Nelson’s Column in the 1960s transformed the most famous landmarks
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If you go just three miles west, you’ll find an exact replica of the cathedral on Vauxhall Bridge hidden in plain sight!
While you couldn’t miss the original St Paul’s, the replica is much smaller and is one of eight sculptures decorating the sides of the bridge.
The eight statues – four on each side – depict eight women holding an object that represents the Arts and Sciences.
In this case, St. Paul’s represents London architecture.
The statues were created in 1909 by Frederick Pomeroy and Alfred Drury and are tucked into alcoves – so you can only see them if passing by on a boat or if you lean over the walkway.
Drury completed the upriver figures which represent agriculture, architecture, engineering, and pottery, while Pomeroy created the downriver figures which symbolise education, fine arts, science, and local government.
The statue on the left is of a woman holding a tiny version of St Paul’s
(Image: Darren Pepe)
Some history buffs have said the replica might well be the smallest cathedral in England, if not the world.
But while the cathedral might be miniature, the eight statues stand at well over twice the size of the average human.
The statues were added after the rebuild of the bridge – the original bridge was demolished following complaints that its arches were impeding traffic on the River Thames.
When the new Vauxhall Bridge opened in 1906, Londoners complained that the steel bridge was rather boring to look at.
As a result, London County Council commissioned the statues that were finished in 1907 and erected shortly afterwards.