"Houses of Parliament" Houses of Parliament - Palace of Westminster Tip by clouds111


The Houses of Parliament is home to one of the most iconic sights in London - Big Ben, which is the name of the bell that chimes. Westminster Palace used to house the Monarchy and at one stage also the Law Courts which are now based at the Royal Courts of Justice on the Strand. Today the House of Lords and the House of Commons both sit here which is where the legislation of England and Wales are debated.

Parts of the Palace can be visited such as the Westminister Hall - the oldest part of the building. You can also sit in the public gallery to listen to some of the debates that occur in both houses or the committee rooms. However security is a little tighter after a flour bomb attack a couple of years ago and when protesters infiltrated the chamber during the debate on fox hunting.

I'm quite lucky to have been on a rare tour of the palace and through my work have had to go to the 'House' a number of times to listen to various clauses taken through the legislative process. The Lord's is the funniest where you watch the occassional Lord fall asleep as the debate go on.

The work that has gone into this gothic building probably makes it the most intricate of all the buildings in London. There's a small garden next to the palace which is usually quiet and a nice place to stop for lunch.

Address: Parliament Square, SW1
Directions: Westminster tube
Phone: +44 20 7219 3000
Website: http://www.parliament.uk

Review Helpfulness: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Updated Oct 1, 2007
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