Houses of Parliament
Westminster, London, United Kingdom
Houses of Parliament London Reviews
Iconic Mar 16, 2011
The Houses of Parliament is probably one of the most famous landmarks in London. While the site is also referred to as the Palace of Westminster, it is generally referred to as “Westminster”. Built in a gothic style during the Victorian era, the building is home to the Big Ben clock. More importantly, it also houses the current government of the day!
Apart from gawping at Big Ben, I think the most famous time for Westminster is during the state opening of parliament.
Despite the importance of the building, it is possible to enter inside. There is a queue outside for free tickets, but these cannot be booked in advance. If you are a UK resident, your local MP should also be able to provide you with tickets for the galleries in the Commons.
The building is incredibly impressive and reminds me a lot of the colleges at Oxford or Cambridge universities. Whether you go in or not, it’s definitely worth visiting.
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Houses of Parliament Dec 06, 2009
First of all I cannot tell how much is the ticket as main was complimentary but to let UK residents know if you'll contact your MP you can get to Parliament for free as well, the whole year around! for others possibility to visit Parliament is there for around one month in a year so check for dates of Summer Opening beforehand
The tour by a trained guide takes around 1h 15min. It starts from the oldest part of Palace of Westminster- the Great Hall also known as the Westminster Hall. That's the only place one can take pictures inside!
The tour goes through Queen's Robbing Room (where she dresses for Opening of Parliament), House of Lords, House of Commons, St, Stephen's Hall and Central Lobby back to Westminster Hall.
'Origins of Parliament- King's Council- the origins go back to the 12th century when King's councils were held involving barons and archibishops. They discussed politics and were involved in taxation and judgments.
over time those councils took a more formal roleand saw knights representing each county. This was the beginning of a Commons element in Parliament. The first official use of the term 'Parliament' was in 1236'
Westminster Hall is the oldest remaining part of the original Palace of Westminster. It was commissioned in 1097 under William II (son of William the Conqueror) and completed 2 years later. The hammer- beam roof is the largest medieval timber roof in Northern Europe (it was commissioned in 1393 by Richard II)
In 1834, a fire started in the House of Lords and spread northwards towards the Hall, destroying existing buildings and threatening the Hall's wooden roof. The prime minister (Lord Melbourne) quickly directed efforts to douse the roof with water, saving the Hall although much of the Palace's other buildings were lost
In May 1941 the House of Commons and Westminster Hall were hit in a bombing raid- a decision was made to rescue the Hall at the cost of the Chamber which was completely destroyed
Part of the here I live travel blog
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