May 1974. Seddon House was part of Phase II of the City’s building programme for the Barbican site. The original contractor was Turriff Limited. But after long delays and labour disputes Turriff were allowed to leave the site and their buildings were completed by John Laing Construction Limited.
Seddon House is a terrace on the west side of Thomas More Garden and it runs from Lauderdale Tower to Thomas More House. It joins Thomas More House at the lake end and then runs at right angles to it in the direction of the Museum of London. It is a terrace block supported on unusually tall columns.
Seddon House is a north-south (or side-to-side) terrace, which means that Seddon House has a central corridor along each floor. It is parallel with Lambert Jones Mews which it overlooks, and is oriented at right angles with Thomas More House and Defoe House. Flats are on one or other side of it, with all rooms facing either west over Thomas More Garden or east over Aldersgate Street.
There are 3 similar terrace blocks: Gilbert House, Mountjoy House and Seddon House. They each have penthouse flats at the top, and regular floors of flats below, but no garden flats. They are also all north-south (or side-to-side) terrace buildings.
There are 6 storeys of flats above podium level with penthouse maisonettes above that. Seddon House has 75 flats and maisonettes, ranging from one-room studio flats to five-room penthouse maisonettes. The flats are numbered 101 – 112, 201 – 212, 301 – 312, 401 – 412, 501 – 512, 601 – 612, 701 – 703. Flats are on one or other side of the central corridor, with all rooms facing either west over Thomas More Garden or east over Aldersgate Street.
There are two entrance doors at either end of the building. (See ‘Lifts and staircases’ below), one near Lauderdale Tower and the other near Thomas More House. The main entrance is at podium level on Seddon Highwalk. 01 level in the lifts is Lauderdale Place, or street level. 02 is a car park level, with no relationship to ground or any structures outside the car park. The main car park is at 03 level, which joins the gardens and Lambert Jones Mews.
Lifts and staircases
An access corridor runs through the middle of the block, with lifts and staircases at each end. Unlike some of the buildings, Seddon corridors have decent central lights. Lifts go as far as the sixth floor. You have to take stairs up to the flats on the seventh floor. The lift lobbies and stairs have exposed granite at the north end, but they are painted white at the south end. There is a staircase with a lift at the south end of the terrace numbered 26; and there is another such staircase and lift at the north end near Thomas More House numbered 25.
There is no direct access to a car park. The nearby Andrewes and Thomas More Car Parks are large. At 03 level, arches open on to Thomas More Garden at the south end. Car owners cross a cobbled road in front of the Thomas More garden flats to reach Thomas More House car park, whose entrance is off Aldersgate Street, just under The Museum of London.
I don’t know what the arrangements are for tenants’ stores.
List description of this building issued by the Department of Culture, Media and Sport (as it then was) in 2001.
“Block XII: 101-112, 201-212, 301-312,401-412, 501-512,601-612, 701-703 Seddon House. Seven storeys. Six wide bays, each three windows wide, with narrower bays at end, supported on giant double pairs of concrete columns which descend to the level of the lake below the podium. The block is entered via lifts and stairs at either end, with flats set either east or west of these internal stairwell lobbies save for the penthouse. Each flat is a structural bay wide, save for the penthouse flats which are two. Sliding varnished timber windows set behind paved balconies, with metal and glass balustrades and most with concrete window boxes. Painted undersides of roof. Rooftop penthouses, with double height rooms lit by fully-glazed ends under rounded tops, given a white finish.”