Three concrete tower blocks, maze-like walkways and a gorgeous conservatory – the Barbican estate is a stunning brutalist structure, but it’s also much more. Built in the ’60s, it’s a symbol of what housing in London could have been: a utopian sky city with affordable homes rubbing up beside grander ones. Now even the pokiest Barbican flat seems like a mansion (with a price tag to match). But the buildings are still open to all – as is the Barbican Centre. It serves up some of the city’s best culture from its concrete box.
To celebrate Time Out’s 50th anniversary, we’ve pulled together a list of 50 iconic London addresses, but this is not just a list of buildings. These are the cultural spots that help make London… London. The ones we love, that resonate with us, that draw us back. Whether you’re searching for nightlife in a former printing press, a unique shopping experience at the UK’s first gay and lesbian bookshop or drinks in a world-renowned cocktail bar, these awe-inspiring spots are not to be missed.