St John's, Smith Square

Entertainment & Arts

Europe, United Kingdom, London

St John's, Smith Square is a church in the middle of Smith Square, Westminster, London. Sold to a charitable Trust as a ruin following firebombing in World War II, it was restored, the internal layout altered somewhat, and is now used as a concert hall. This grade I listed church was designed by Thomas Archer and was completed in 1728. It is regarded as one of the finest works of English Baroque architecture, and features four corner towers and monumental broken pediments. It is often referred to as 'Queen Anne's Footstool' because as legend has it, when Archer was designing the church he asked the Queen what she wanted it to look like. She kicked over her footstool and said 'Like that!', giving rise to the building's four corner towers. The towers were, in fact, added to stabilise the building against subsidence.