This often-overlooked London monument was salvaged from obscurity and reconfigured to help celebrate the Silver Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II in 1977. The monument also has ties to one of Hollywood’s most acclaimed and legendary directors, Stanely Kubrick.
The story of the monument begins when Kubrick was directing the film 2001: A Space Odyssey. At first, Kubrick commissioned the appropriately named Stanley Plastics to design the monolith that was featured throughout the film. However, once on set, Kubrick decided to go with something more austere that reflected a more ominous and foreboding presence.
The rejected prop was then stored away for several years before it was rediscovered. A sculptor by the name of Arthur Fleischmann was selected to design a commemorative art piece to mark the reigning monarch’s 25th anniversary.
He decided that this 11-foot piece of perspex, said to be the largest acrylic creation in the world, would be perfect. He carved a crown in the center and it was unveiled by Queen Elizabeth herself on June 5th, 1977.
Know Before You Go
Locating the monolith can be a bit tricky. Situated amongst a labyrinth of restaurants and marina docks, the nearest set landmark would be the Coronarium Chapel. It's also unceremoniously positioned above a cash machine and a few feet away from a set of public toilets. It is visible at all hours of the day. At night, the monument is illuminated from behind.