Betjeman had a special fondness for Victorian architecture and was a great Victorian Society activist. He is considered instrumental in helping to save the famous facade of St. Pancras rail station in London and was commemorated when it reopened in 2007. He was said to have called the plan to demolish St. Pancras a “criminal folly.” About the station itself he wrote:
“What [the Londoner] sees in his mind’s eye is that cluster of towers and pinnacles seen from Pentonville Hill and outlined against a foggy sunset, and the great arc of Barlow’s train shed gaping to devour incoming engines, and the sudden burst of exuberant Gothic of the hotel seen from gloomy Judd Street.”
The newly reopened (Nov. 2007) St. Pancras now features a statue of Betjeman in the station on train level.