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London Landmarks & Attractions


Parliament & Big Ben, London
Parliament Square, SW1
Westminster

The legislative branch of the British government occupies what is officially called the New Palace of Westminster, situated on the original site of Edward the Confessor's Palace of Westminster. The neo-Gothic building was begun in 1840 and the first Parliament was opened by Queen Victoria in 1852. Victoria Tower at the south end of the building is, at 336 ft., the tallest square tower in the world. Tucked into a niche along the west side of the building, is a statue of Richard I, Lionheart, striking a heroic pose.

One of the world's most famous landmarks, Big Ben is the clock tower of the Houses of Parliament. "Big Ben" was originally the nickname given to the 13 ton "Great Bell of Westminster," but the term ultimately came to include the clock and St. Stephen's Tower.

The original specification for the clock (developed by Astronomer Royal, Professor George Biddell Airy) called for it to be accurate to within one second (the accuracy would be checked twice daily, comparing it's time to the Royal Observatory's standard). The clockmaking industry felt that this requirement would be impossible to achieve in a large, exposed, outdoor timepiece, but Big Ben has proven remarkably accurate, even during wartime. For example, during a WWII bombardment on 10 May 1941, the House of Commons was virtually destroyed, but Big Ben managed to lose only a half second of time through it all.
Visitor info at Offtolondon.com.

Pick Another
A
Admiralty Arch
Albert Memorial
The Anchor Inn

B
Baker Street
Banqueting House
Big Ben
Boudicca's Statue
Britain at War Experience
British Museum
Brompton Oratory
Buckingham Palace

C
The Cenotaph
Cleopatra's Needle
Clink Museum
Constitution Arch

D
Design Museum
Downing Street
Duke of York Column

E, F, G
The George Inn
The Golden Hinde
Grand Union Canal
Green Park
H, I, J
Harrods
HMS Belfast
Horse Guards
Imperial War Museum
Jewel Tower

K, L
London Aquarium
London Bridge
London Dungeon
London Eye
London Palladium
London Planetarium
London Transport Museum
Lyceum Theatre

M, N
Madame Tussaud's
Marble Arch
Millennium Dome
Millennium Mile
Monument
National Gallery
National History Museum
National Portrait Gallery

O, P
Old Operating Theatre Museum
Olde Vic Theatre
Parliament
Piccadilly Circus
Portobello Road

Q, R, S
Queen Victoria Memorial
Roman Wall
Royal Albert Hall
Royal Courts of Justice
Royal Exchange
Royal Festival Hall
Royal National Theatre
Savoy Theatre
St. James' Palace
St. Katherine's Dock
St. Margaret's Church
St. Martin-in-the-Fields
St. Mary-le-Bow
St. Mary-le-Strand
St. Paul's Cathedral
Selfridge's
Shakespeare's Globe
Sherlock Holmes Pub
Simpsons-in-the-Strand
South Bank
Southwark Cathedral
Staple Inn
Strand Theatre

T, U, V
Temple Church
Temple of Mithras
Theatre Museum
Theatre Royal, Drury Lane
Tower Bridge
Tower of London
Trafalgar Square
Victoria & Albert Museum
Victoria's Embankment

W, X, Y, Z
Waterloo Station
Westminster Abbey
Winchester House
Whitehall
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