"The historic Palace: where history is written now!" Houses of Parliament - Palace of Westminster Tip by Durfun
Houses of Parliament - Palace of Westminster, London: 268 reviews and 484 photos
You MUST see this place from inside. Security is tight, and there is a queue (often quite long) BUT do not let this put you off!
Westminster Palace served as a royal residence between 1049-1530. So, you can find sculptures of kings and queens going back almost 1000 years here.
The Great Hall is the only remaining large structure from the time of construction. Most of what you see as the Houses of Parliament is a lot newer, and added components over the centuries, following fire damage, war damage, etc.
This very hall is where the Queen Mother was lying in state before her formal funeral. Also, it's the very room where William Wallace, Guido Fawkes, and Charles I, were tried and sentenced to death! They have marked the spot where Wallace & Charles I were seated during sentencing!
** Ironically, Charles I's father James I was the target for assassination by Guy Fawkes and his co-conspirators & so James I oversaw their trials. Years later his own son Charles I was found guilty of treason (Royalists vs Parliament Wars). He was executed near the Banqueting House in Whitehall. Whitehall Palace was the royal residence from 1530-1698. You can view the site later, about a 5 minute walk east.
The sculptures, paintings, decorations in the Parliament building are truly amazing.
Try to visit Parliament in session to get a feel for the way politics is conducted today!
Guided tours are also available, where they explain the history of the whole site, and show you several rooms, chambers, Houses of Commons & Lords, and explain the procedures & protocols of Parliament.
You can queue up on the spot, but it's better if you contact your local constituency office to secure an exact time slot. Foreigners/visitors to London can write to the Houses of Parliament to arrange such a convenient slot for viewing.
You'll be enthralled and fascinated ! Don't miss this!!
Address: Parliament Square, SW1
Directions: Westminster tube
Phone: +44 20 7219 3000
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