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Encyclopedia > Palace of Westminster
Westminster Palace, Westminster Abbey and Saint Margaret's Church*
UNESCO World Heritage Site
The Palace of Westminster at dusk, showing the Victoria Tower (left) and the Clock Tower colloquially known as 'Big Ben', lies on the bank of the River Thames in the heart of London
State Party United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
Type Cultural
Criteria i, ii, iv
Reference 426
Region Europe and North America
Inscription History
Inscription 1987  (11th Session)
* Name as inscribed on World Heritage List.
† Region as classified by UNESCO.

The Palace of Westminster, also known as the Houses of Parliament or Westminster Palace, in London is where the two Houses of the Parliament of the United Kingdom (the House of Lords and the House of Commons) meet to conduct their business. The Palace lies on the north bank of the River Thames in the London borough of the City of Westminster, close by other government buildings in Whitehall. Image File history File links LinkFA-star. ... Houses of Parliament may refer to the: British Houses of Parliament or Palace of Westminster Irish Houses of Parliament Malaysian Houses of Parliament Category: ... The Collegiate Church of St Peter, Westminster, which is almost always referred to by its original name of Westminster Abbey, is a mainly Gothic church, on the scale of a cathedral (and indeed often mistaken for one), in Westminster, London, just to the west of the Palace of Westminster. ... The Anglican church of St. ... A UNESCO World Heritage Site is a specific site (such as a forest, mountain, lake, desert, monument, building, complex, or city) that has been nominated and confirmed for inclusion on the list maintained by the international World Heritage Programme administered by the UNESCO World Heritage Committee, composed of 21 State... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high-resolution version (3200x1261, 1005 KB) File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): House of Lords Parliament of the United Kingdom London City of Westminster User talk:Diliff User:Diliff Wikipedia... As of 2006, there are a total of 830 World Heritage Sites located in 138 State Parties. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_the_United_Kingdom. ... “UK” redirects here. ... A UNESCO World Heritage Site is a specific site (such as a forest, mountain, lake, desert, monument, building, complex, or city) that has been nominated and confirmed for inclusion on the list maintained by the international World Heritage Programme administered by the UNESCO World Heritage Committee, composed of 21 State... This is a list of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Europe. ... A UNESCO World Heritage Site is a specific site (such as a forest, mountain, lake, desert, monument, building, complex, or city) that has been nominated and confirmed for inclusion on the list maintained by the international World Heritage Programme administered by the UNESCO World Heritage Committee, composed of 21 State... This article is about the capital of England and the United Kingdom. ... Type Bicameral Houses House of Commons House of Lords Speaker of the House of Commons The Right Honourable Michael Martin MP Lord Speaker Hélène Hayman, Baroness Hayman, PC Members 1377 (646 Commons, 731 Peers) Political groups (as of May 5, 2005 elections) Labour Party Conservative Party Liberal Democrats... This article is about the British House of Lords. ... Type Lower House Speaker of the House of Commons Leader of the House of Commons Michael Martin, (Non-affiliated) since October 23, 2000 Harriet Harman, QC, (Labour) since June 28, 2007 Shadow Leader of the House of Commons Theresa May, PC, (Conservative) since December 6, 2005 Members 646 Political groups... This article is about the River Thames in southern England. ... The administrative area of Greater London contains thirty-two London boroughs. ... The City of Westminster is a borough of London, England with city status. ... Whitehall, London, looking south towards the Houses of Parliament. ...


The palace is one of the largest Parliaments in the world. The layout of the Palace is intricate, with its existing buildings containing nearly 1,200 rooms, 100 staircases and well over three kilometers (two miles) of corridors. Although mainly dating from the 19th century, among the original historic buildings is Westminster Hall, used nowadays for major public ceremonial events such as lyings in state, and the Jewel Tower. Alternative meaning: Nineteenth Century (periodical) (18th century — 19th century — 20th century — more centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 19th century was that century which lasted from 1801-1900 in the sense of the Gregorian calendar. ... “Houses of Parliament” redirects here. ... Lying-in-state is the term used during a major funeral procession when the coffin is placed on public view to allow members of the public to pay their respects to the deceased. ... The Jewel Tower in London is one of only two surviving sections of the medieval royal Palace of Westminster, the other being Westminster Hall. ...


Control of the Palace of Westminster and its precincts was for centuries exercised by the Queen's representative, the Lord Great Chamberlain. By agreement with the Crown, control passed to the two Houses in 1965. Certain ceremonial rooms continue to be controlled by the Lord Great Chamberlain. The Lord Great Chamberlain of England is the sixth of the Great Officers of State, ranking beneath the Lord Privy Seal and above the Lord High Constable. ... Year 1965 (MCMLXV) was a common year starting on Friday (link will display full calendar) of the 1965 Gregorian calendar. ...


After a fire in 1834, the present Houses of Parliament were built over the next 30 years. They were the work of the architect Sir Charles Barry (1795-1860) and his assistant Augustus Welby Pugin (1812-52). The design incorporated Westminster Hall and the remains of St Stephen's Chapel. Year 1834 (MDCCCXXXIV) was a common year starting on Wednesday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian Calendar (or a common year starting on Monday of the 12-day slower Julian calendar). ... The Clock Tower of the Palace of Westminster, Barrys most famous building. ... ...

Contents

History

The Palace of Westminster was strategically important during the Middle Ages, as it was located on the banks of the River Thames. Buildings have occupied the site since at least Saxon times. Known in medieval times as Thorney Island, the site may have been first used for a royal residence by Canute the Great (reigned 1016 to 1035). The penultimate Saxon monarch of England, St Edward the Confessor, built a royal palace in Thorney Island just west of the City of London at about the same time as he built Westminster Abbey (1045 to 1050). Thorney Island and the surrounding area soon became known as Westminster (a contraction of the words "West Monastery"). After the Norman Conquest (1066) King William I established himself at the Tower of London, but later moved to Westminster. Neither the buildings used by the Saxons nor those used by William I survive. The oldest existing parts of the Palace (Westminster Hall and the Great Hall) date from the reign of William I's successor, King William II. The Middle Ages formed the middle period in a traditional schematic division of European history into three ages: the classical civilization of Antiquity, the Middle Ages, and modern times, beginning with the Renaissance. ... For other uses, see Anglo-Saxon. ... Thorney Island was the eyot on the Thames, upstream of mediæval London, where Westminster Abbey and Westminster Palace (now the Houses of Parliament) were built. ... Canute (or Cnut) I, or Canute the Great (Old Norse: Knútr inn ríki, Danish: Knud den Store, Norwegian: Knut den mektige, Swedish: Knut den store) (ca. ... St Edward the Confessor or Eadweard III (c. ... The Collegiate Church of St Peter, Westminster, which is almost always referred to by its original name of Westminster Abbey, is a mainly Gothic church, on the scale of a cathedral (and indeed often mistaken for one), in Westminster, London, just to the west of the Palace of Westminster. ... Monastery of St. ... Bayeux Tapestry depicting events leading to the Battle of Hastings The Norman Conquest of England was the conquest of the Kingdom of England by William the Conqueror (Duke of Normandy), in 1066 at the Battle of Hastings and the subsequent Norman control of England. ... William I of England (c. ... For other uses, see Tower of London (disambiguation) Her Majestys Royal Palace and Fortress The Tower of London, more commonly known as the Tower of London (and historically simply as The Tower), is an historic monument in central London, England on the north bank of the River Thames. ... William II (c. ...


The Palace of Westminster was the monarch's principal residence in the late Mediaeval period. The predecessor of Parliament, the Curia Regis (Royal Council), met in Westminster Hall (though it followed the King when he moved to other palaces). The Model Parliament, the first official Parliament of England, met in the Palace in 1295. Since then, almost all Parliaments have met in the Palace. However, some Parliaments have met in other locations. Curia Regis is a Latin term meaning Royal Council or Kings court. The Curia Regis in England was a council of tenants-in-chief and ecclesiastics that advised the king of England on legislative matters. ... The Model Parliament is the term used for the 1295 parliament of King Edward I. This assembly included members of the clergy and the aristocracy, as well as representatives from the various counties and boroughs. ...

A detail from John Rocque's 1746 map of London
A detail from John Rocque's 1746 map of London
J. M. W. Turner watched the fire of 1834 and painted several canvases depicting it, including The Burning of the Houses of Lords and Commons (1835).
J. M. W. Turner watched the fire of 1834 and painted several canvases depicting it, including The Burning of the Houses of Lords and Commons (1835).

Westminster remained the monarch's chief London residence until a fire destroyed part of the structure in 1529. In 1530 King Henry VIII acquired York Palace from Thomas Cardinal Wolsey, a powerful minister who had lost the King's favor. Renaming it the Palace of Whitehall, Henry VIII used it as his principal residence. Although Westminster officially remained a royal palace, it was used by the two Houses of Parliament and as a law court. Download high resolution version (662x650, 141 KB)Detail of the Palace of Westminster from John Rocques map of London in 1746. ... Download high resolution version (662x650, 141 KB)Detail of the Palace of Westminster from John Rocques map of London in 1746. ... John Rocque (originally Jean, b. ... Download high resolution version (863x644, 101 KB)J. M. W. Turner - The Burning of the Houses of Lords and Commons (1835) Oil on canvas, Philadelphia Museum of Art Turner witnessed the fire that burnt down most of the Palace of Westminster on 16 October 1834. ... Download high resolution version (863x644, 101 KB)J. M. W. Turner - The Burning of the Houses of Lords and Commons (1835) Oil on canvas, Philadelphia Museum of Art Turner witnessed the fire that burnt down most of the Palace of Westminster on 16 October 1834. ... Joseph Mallord William Turner (April 23, 1775 (exact date disputed) – December 19, 1851) was an English Romantic landscape painter, watercolourist and printmaker, whose style can be said to have laid the foundation for Impressionism. ... “Henry VIII” redirects here. ... The Palace of Whitehall by Hendrick Danckerts. ... Thomas Cardinal Wolsey, (c. ...


Because it was originally a royal residence, the Palace did not include any purpose-built chambers for the two Houses. Important state ceremonies, including the State Opening of Parliament, were held in the Painted Chamber. The House of Lords usually met in the White Chamber. The House of Commons, however, did not have a chamber of its own; it sometimes held its debates in the Chapter House of Westminster Abbey. The Commons acquired a permanent home in the Palace — St Stephen's Chapel, a former royal chapel, but only during the reign of Henry VIII's successor, King Edward VI. The Chantries Act 1547 (passed as a part of the Protestant Reformation) dissolved the religious order of the Canons of St Stephen's (among other institutions); thus the Chapel was left for the Commons' use. Alterations were made to St Stephen's Chapel for the convenience of the lower House. This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... St. ... Edward VI (12 October 1537 – 6 July 1553) became King of England, King of France (in practice only the town and surrounding district of Calais) and Ireland on 28 January 1547, and crowned on 20 February, at just nine years of age. ... “Reformation” redirects here. ...


On 16 October 1834, most of the Palace was destroyed by fire. Only Westminster Hall, the Jewel Tower, the crypt of St Stephen's Chapel and the cloisters survived. A Royal Commission was appointed to study the rebuilding of the Palace and decided that it should be rebuilt on the same site, and that its style should be either Gothic or Elizabethan. A heated public debate over the proposed styles ensued. It was decided that neo-Classical design, similar to that of the White House and Congress in the USA, was to be avoided due to its connotations of revolution and republic. Gothic design embodied conservative values. is the 289th day of the year (290th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1834 (MDCCCXXXIV) was a common year starting on Wednesday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian Calendar (or a common year starting on Monday of the 12-day slower Julian calendar). ... The Burning of the Houses of Lords and Commons (1835) by J. M. W. Turner. ... The Jewel Tower in London is one of only two surviving sections of the medieval royal Palace of Westminster, the other being Westminster Hall. ... Cloister of Saint Trophimus, in Arles, France A cloister (from latin claustrum) is a part of cathedral, monastic and abbey architecture. ... Interior of Cologne Cathedral Interior of San Zanipolo, Venice, photo Giovanni dallOrto. ... Kings College Chapel outside view The Tudor style in English architecture is the final development of medieval architecture during the Tudor period (1485–1603) and even beyond, for conservative college patrons. ... The neoclassical movement that produced Neoclassical architecture began in the mid-18th century, both as a reaction against the Rococo style of anti-tectonic naturalistic ornament, and an outgrowth of some classicizing features of Late Baroque. ... For other uses, see White House (disambiguation). ... The United States Capitol is the capitol building that serves as the location for the United States Congress, the legislative branch of the U.S. federal government. ... Republicanism is the ideology of governing a nation as a republic, with an emphasis on liberty, rule by the people, and the civic virtue practiced by citizens. ...


In 1836, after studying 97 rival proposals, the Royal Commission chose Charles Barry's plan for a Gothic style palace. The foundation stone was laid in 1840; the Lords' Chamber was completed in 1847, and the Commons' Chamber in 1852 (at which point Barry received a knighthood). Although most of the work had been carried out by 1860, construction was not finished until a decade afterwards. The Clock Tower of the Palace of Westminster, Barrys most famous building. ... the Stone - south is towards the top of the image For the foundation-stone of a building, see Cornerstone. ... The dignity of Knight Bachelor is a part of the British honours system. ...


Exterior

Notice regarding a strike of stonemasons during the reconstruction of the Palace.
Notice regarding a strike of stonemasons during the reconstruction of the Palace.

Sir Charles Barry's design for the Palace of Westminster uses the Perpendicular Gothic style, which was popular during the 15th century and returned during the Gothic revival of the 19th century. Barry was himself a classical architect, but he was aided by the Gothic architect Augustus Pugin. Westminster Hall, which was built in the 11th century and survived the fire of 1834, was incorporated in Barry's design. Pugin was displeased with the result of the work, especially with the symmetrical layout designed by Barry; he famously remarked, "All Grecian, sir; Tudor details on a classic body." Image File history File links Size of this preview: 336 × 599 pixelsFull resolution (802 × 1429 pixel, file size: 328 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Image File history File links Size of this preview: 336 × 599 pixelsFull resolution (802 × 1429 pixel, file size: 328 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Winchester Cathedral Sherborne Abbey The Perpendicular Gothic period (or simply Perpendicular) is the third historical division of English Gothic architecture, and is so-called because it is characterised by an emphasis on vertical lines; it is also known as the Rectilinear style, or Late Gothic. ... Victoria Tower at the Palace of Westminster, London: Gothic details provided by A.W.N. Pugin San Sebastian Church in Manila, Philippines made entirely of steel. ... From the point of view of modern times, the ancient civilizations of the Mediterranean sometimes seem to blend smoothly into one melange we call the Classical. ... Augustus Welby Northmore Pugin (March 1, 1812–September 14, 1852) was an English-born architect, designer and theorist of design now best remembered for his work on churches and on the Houses of Parliament. ...


Stonework

The stonework of the building was originally Anston, a sand-colored magnesian limestone quarried in the village of Anston in South Yorkshire. The stone, however, soon began to decay due to pollution and the poor quality of some of the stone used. Although such defects were clear as early as 1849, nothing was done for the remainder of the 19th century. During the 1910s, however, it became clear that some of the stonework had to be replaced. To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... For other uses, see Limestone (disambiguation). ... The villages of North Anston and South Anston are the principal constituents of the civil parish of North and South Anston, in the metropolitan borough of Rotherham, South Yorkshire, England. ... South Yorkshire is a metropolitan and ceremonial county in the Yorkshire and the Humber Government Office Region of England, in the United Kingdom. ... It has been suggested that Pollutant be merged into this article or section. ...


In 1928 it was deemed necessary to use Clipsham Stone, a honey-colored limestone from Rutland, to replace the decayed Anston. The project began in the 1930s but was halted due to the Second World War, and completed only during the 1950s. By the 1960s pollution had once again begun to take its toll. A stone conservation and restoration programme to the external elevations and towers began in 1981, and ended in 1994. The House Authorities have since been undertaking the external restoration of the many inner courtyards and this is due to continue until approximately 2010. Oakham Castle Rutland is traditionally Englands smallest county and is bounded on the west and north by Leicestershire, northeast by Lincolnshire, and southeast by Northamptonshire. ... Combatants Allied powers: China France Great Britain Soviet Union United States and others Axis powers: Germany Italy Japan and others Commanders Chiang Kai-shek Charles de Gaulle Winston Churchill Joseph Stalin Franklin Roosevelt Adolf Hitler Benito Mussolini Hideki Tōjō Casualties Military dead: 17,000,000 Civilian dead: 33,000...


Towers

Sir Charles Barry's Palace of Westminster includes several towers. The tallest is the 98 metres (323 feet) Victoria Tower, a square tower at the south-western end of the Palace. The tower was named after the reigning monarch at the time of the reconstruction of the Palace, Queen Victoria. The tower is home to the Parliamentary Archives. Atop the Victoria Tower is an iron flagstaff, from which the Royal Standard (if the Sovereign is present in the Palace) or the Union Flag is flown. At the base of the Victoria Tower is the Sovereign's Entrance to the Palace. The monarch uses this entrance whenever entering the Palace of Westminster for the State Opening of Parliament or for any other official ceremony. Victoria Tower is the square tower at the south end of the Palace of Westminster. ... “Queen Victoria” redirects here. ... The Parliamentary Archives of the United Kingdom preserves and makes available to public the records of the House of Lords and House of Commons back to 1497, as well as some 200 other collections of Parliamentary interest. ... For other monarch’s standards, see Royal Standard (disambiguation). ... “Union Jack” redirects here. ... In the United Kingdom, the State Opening of Parliament is an annual event held usually in October or November that marks the commencement of a session of Parliament. ...


Over the middle of the Palace lies St. Stephen's Tower, also called the Central Tower. This tower is 91 m (300 ft) tall, making it the shortest of the three principal towers of the Palace. Unlike the other towers, St Stephen's Tower possesses a spire. It stands immediately above the Central Lobby, and is octagonally shaped. Its function was originally as a high-level air intake.


A small tower is positioned at the front of the Palace, between Westminster Hall and Old Palace Yard, and contains the main entrance to the House of Commons at its base, known as St Stephen's entrance.


At the north-western end of the Palace is the most famous of the towers, the Clock Tower (popularly referred to as Big Ben) which is 96 m (316 ft) tall. The Clock Tower houses a large clock known as the Great Clock of Westminster. On each of the four sides of the tower is a large clock face. The tower also houses five bells, which strike the Westminster Chimes every quarter hour. The largest and most famous of the bells is Big Ben (officially, the Great Bell of Westminster), which strikes the hour. This is the third heaviest bell in England, weighing 13 tons 10 cwt 99 lb (about 13.8 t). Although the term "Big Ben" properly refers only to the bell, it is often colloquially applied to the whole tower. “Big Ben” redirects here. ... The Westminster Quarters is the most common name for a melody used by a set of clock bells to strike the hour. ... “Big Ben” redirects here. ...


Grounds

The layout of the Palace of Westminster
The layout of the Palace of Westminster

There are a number of small gardens surrounding the Palace of Westminster. Victoria Tower Gardens is open as a public park along the side of the river south of the palace. Black Rod's Garden (named after the office of Gentleman Usher of the Black Rod) is closed to the public and is used as a private entrance. Old Palace Yard, in front of the Palace, is paved over and covered in concrete security blocks (see security below). Cromwell Green (also on the frontage, and in 2006 enclosed by hoardings for the construction of a new visitor centre), New Palace Yard (on the north side) and Speaker's Green (directly north of the Palace) are all private and closed to the public. College Green, opposite the House of Lords, is a small triangular green used for television interviews with politicians. Image File history File links Palace_of_Westminster_plan_Crace. ... Image File history File links Palace_of_Westminster_plan_Crace. ... Victoria Tower Gardens is a public park along the north bank of the River Thames in London. ... Several places exist with the name Thames, and the word is also used as part of several brand and company names Most famous is the River Thames in England, on which the city of London stands Other Thames Rivers There is a Thames River in Canada There is a Thames... The Gentleman Usher of the Black Rod, generally shortened to just Black Rod, is an official in the parliaments of a number of Commonwealth countries. ... College Green is a small public triangle of grass in Westminster, London, located off Millbank, split off from the private Abbey-owned College Garden by a large wall. ...


Interior

The Palace of Westminster includes over 1,100 rooms, 100 staircases, and 3 miles (5 km) of passageways. The building includes four floors; the ground floor includes offices, dining rooms, and bars. The 'first floor' (known as the principal floor) houses the main rooms of the Palace, including the Chambers, the lobbies, and the libraries. The Robing Room, the Royal Gallery, the Prince's Chamber, the Lords' Chamber, the Peers' Lobby, the Central Lobby, the Members' Lobby, and the Commons' Chamber all lie in a straight line on this floor, from south to north, in the order noted. (Westminster Hall lies to a side at the Commons end of the Palace.) The top two floors are used for committee rooms and offices. Margaret Thatcher unveils a statue of herself in the Members Lobby of the House of Commons The Members Lobby is a hallway in the Palace of Westminster used by members of the Parliament of the United Kingdom. ...


Formerly, the Palace was controlled by the Lord Great Chamberlain, as it was (and formally remains) a royal residence. In 1965, however, it was decided that each House should control its own rooms. The Speaker and Lord Chancellor exercise control on behalf of their respective Houses. The Lord Great Chamberlain retains custody of certain ceremonial rooms. The Lord Great Chamberlain of England is the sixth of the Great Officers of State, ranking beneath the Lord Privy Seal and above the Lord High Constable. ... The quintessential medieval European palace: Palais de la Cité, in Paris, the royal palace of France. ...


Lords Chamber

Benches in the House of Lords are coloured red. The Sovereign's Throne and Canopy are located at one end of the chamber.
Benches in the House of Lords are coloured red. The Sovereign's Throne and Canopy are located at one end of the chamber.

The Chamber of the House of Lords is located in the southern part of the Palace of Westminster. The lavishly decorated room measures 14 by 24 m (45 by 80 ft). The benches in the Chamber, as well as other furnishings in the Lords' side of the Palace, are coloured red. The upper part of the Chamber is decorated by stained glass windows and by six allegorical frescoes representing religion, chivalry, and law. The upper part, or the viewing gallery, features a small curtain, around ten inches high. This was constructed in the 1920s to hide the ankles and lower legs of viewing women; fashion was becoming increasingly promiscuous, as they saw it, and the sight of bare legs was deemed unsuitable for Lords. Image File history File links House_of_Lords. ... Image File history File links House_of_Lords. ...


At one end of the Chamber are the ornate gold Canopy and Throne; although the Sovereign may theoretically occupy the Throne during any sitting, he or she attends only the State Opening of Parliament. Other members of the Royal Family who attend the State Opening use Chairs of State next to the Throne. In front of the Throne is the Woolsack, a backless and armless red cushion stuffed with wool, representing the historical importance of the wool trade. The Woolsack is used by the officer presiding over the House (the Lord Speaker since 2006, but historically the Lord Chancellor or a deputy). The House's mace, which represents royal authority, is placed on the back of the Woolsack. In front of the Woolsack are the Judges' Woolsack (a larger red cushion occupied by the Law Lords during the State Opening) and the Table of the House (at which the clerks sit). The woolsack in the former Irish House of Lords. ... Long and short hair wool at the South Central Family Farm Research Center in Boonesville, Arizona Wool is the fiber derived from the fur of animals and people of the Caprinae family, principally sheep, but the hair of certain species of other mammals such as goats and rabbits and oxes... The Lord Speaker (or Lady Speaker) will be a new position in the British Parliament created once the Constitutional Reform Acts provisions about the Speakership of the House of Lords comes into effect. ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... The Lord High Chancellor of Great Britain, or Lord Chancellor and prior to the Union the Chancellor of England and the Lord Chancellor of Scotland, is a senior and important functionary in the government of the United Kingdom, and its predecessor states. ... This article needs cleanup. ... The House of Lords, in addition to having a legislative function, has a judicial function as a court of last resort within the United Kingdom. ...


Members of the House occupy red benches on three sides of the Chamber. The benches on the Lord Chancellor's right form the Spiritual Side and those to his left form the Temporal Side. The Lords Spiritual (archbishops and bishops of the established Church of England) all occupy the Spiritual Side. The Lords Temporal (nobles) sit according to party affiliation: members of the Government party sit on the Spiritual Side, whilst those of the Opposition sit on the Temporal Side. Some peers, who have no party affiliation, sit on the benches in the middle of the House opposite the Woolsack; they are accordingly known as cross-benchers. The Lords Spiritual of the United Kingdom, also called Spiritual Peers, consist of the 26 clergymen of the established Church of England who serve in the House of Lords along with the Lords Temporal. ... The Church of England logo since 1998 The Church of England is the officially established Christian church[1] in England, and acts as the mother and senior branch of the worldwide Anglican Communion, as well as a founding member of the Porvoo Communion. ... In the British system of government, Lords Temporal are those members of the House of Lords who are members of that body due to their secular status. ... A cross-bencher is a member of the British House of Lords who is not aligned to any particular party. ...


The Lords' Chamber is the site of important ceremonies, the most important of which is the State Opening of Parliament, which occurs at the beginning of each annual parliamentary session. The Sovereign, seated on the Throne, delivers the Speech from the Throne, outlining the Government's legislative agenda for the forthcoming parliamentary session. The Commons do not enter the Lords' debating floor; instead, they watch the proceedings from beyond the Bar of the House, just inside the door. A similar ceremony is held at the end of a parliamentary session; the Sovereign, however, does not normally attend, and is instead represented by a group of Lords Commissioners. Queen Elizabeth II reads Canadas Speech from the Throne in 1977 The Speech from the Throne (or Throne Speech) is an event in certain monarchies in which the monarch (or a representative) reads a prepared speech to a complete session of parliament, outlining the governments agenda for the... The Lords Commissioners are Privy Counsellors appointed by the Monarch of the United Kingdom to exercise, on his or her behalf, certain functions relating to Parliament, including the opening and closing of Parliament, the confirmation of a newly elected Speaker of the House of Commons and the granting of Royal...


Commons Chamber

Benches in the House of Commons Chamber are coloured green.

The Chamber of the House of Commons, which was opened in 1950 after the Victorian chamber had been destroyed in 1941 (architect: Giles Gilbert Scott) is at the northern end of the Palace of Westminster. The Chamber measures 14 by 21 m (46 by 68 ft). It is far more austere than the Lords' Chamber; the benches, as well as other furnishings in the Commons side of the Palace, are coloured green. Members of the public are forbidden to sit on the green benches, which are reserved for members of the House of Commons. Other parliaments in Commonwealth nations have copied the colour scheme under which the Lower House is associated with green, and the Upper House with red. Download high resolution version (569x721, 56 KB)From [1]. The House of Commons Information Office has made available a small number of copyright-free images on the Parliament website. ... Download high resolution version (569x721, 56 KB)From [1]. The House of Commons Information Office has made available a small number of copyright-free images on the Parliament website. ... For other uses, see 1941 (disambiguation). ... Sir Giles Gilbert Scott, OM, FRIBA (November 9, 1880 – February 8, 1960) was an English architect known for his work on such buildings as Liverpool Cathedral and Battersea Power Station. ... Type Lower House Speaker of the House of Commons Leader of the House of Commons Michael Martin, (Non-affiliated) since October 23, 2000 Harriet Harman, QC, (Labour) since June 28, 2007 Shadow Leader of the House of Commons Theresa May, PC, (Conservative) since December 6, 2005 Members 646 Political groups... The Commonwealth of Nations as of 2006 Headquarters Marlborough House, London, UK Official languages English Membership 53 sovereign states Leaders  -  Queen Elizabeth II  -  Secretary-General Don McKinnon (since 1 April 2000) Establishment  -  Balfour Declaration 18 November 1926   -  Statute of Westminster 11 December 1931   -  London Declaration 28 April 1949  Area  -  Total...


At one end of the Chamber is the Speaker's Chair, a present to Parliament from Australia. In front of the Speaker's Chair is the Table of the House, at which the clerks sit, and on which is placed the Commons' ceremonial mace. The dispatch boxes, which front bench Members of Parliament (MPs) often lean on or rest notes on during Questions and speeches, are a gift from New Zealand. There are green benches on either side of the house; members of the Government party occupy benches on the Speaker's right, whilst those of the Opposition occupy benches on the Speaker's left. There are no cross-benches as in the House of Lords. The Chamber is relatively small, and can accommodate only 427 of the 646 Members of Parliament. During Prime Minister's Questions and in major debates MPs stand at either end of the House. In the United Kingdom, the Speaker of the House of Commons is the presiding officer of the House of Commons, and is seen historically as the First Commoner of the Land. ... The dispatch box in Australias Houses of Parliament in Canberra The dispatch box is a wooden box which serves as a lectern. ... A Member of Parliament, or MP, is a representative elected by the voters to a parliament. ... Prime Ministers Questions (PMQs) (officially Questions to the Prime Minister) is a constitutional convention in the United Kingdom, where every Wednesday when the House of Commons is sitting the Prime Minister spends half an hour answering questions from Members of Parliament (MPs). In Canada, this convention is known as...


By tradition, the British Sovereign does not enter the Chamber of the House of Commons. The last monarch to enter the Chamber was King Charles I (in 1642); he sought to arrest five Members of Parliament on charges of high treason. When the King asked the Speaker, William Lenthall, if he had any knowledge of the whereabouts of these individuals, Lenthall famously replied: "May it please your Majesty, I have neither eyes to see nor tongue to speak in this place but as the House is pleased to direct me, whose servant I am here." Charles I (19 November 1600 – 30 January 1649) was King of England, King of Scotland and King of Ireland from 27 March 1625 until his execution in 1649. ... {{main|Treason}} High treason, broadly defined, is an action which is grossly disloyal to ones country or sovereign. ... William Lenthall (1591 – September 3, 1662), was an English politician of the Civil War period, Speaker of the House of Commons. ...


The two red lines on the floor of the House of Commons are, by (probably apocryphal) tradition, two sword lengths and one foot (0.3 m) apart. Protocol dictates that MPs may not cross these lines when speaking. Historically, this was to prevent disputes in the house from devolving into duels. If a Member of Parliament steps over this line while giving a speech he or she will be lambasted by opposition Members. This is, reportedly, where the expression "to toe the line" springs from.


Westminster Hall

Westminster Hall in the early 19th century
Westminster Hall in the early 19th century

Westminster Hall, the oldest existing part of the Palace of Westminster, was erected in 1097. The roof was originally supported by pillars but, during the reign of King Richard II, it was replaced by a hammerbeam roof designed by Henry Yevele and Hugh Herland. Westminster Hall is one of the largest halls in Europe and has the largest clearspan medieval roof in England; it measures 21 by 73 m (68 by 240 ft). Despite an Essex legend that the oak timber came from woods in Thundersley, Essex, it is known that the roof timberwork was entirely framed in 1395 at Farnham in Surrey, 35 miles south-west of London. Accounts record the large number of wagons and barges which delivered the jointed timbers (see timber framing article) to Westminster for assembly. Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (633x860, 132 KB) Summary Westminster Hall in the Palace of Westminster, London as drawn by Thomas Rowlandson and Augustus Pugin for Ackermanns Microcosm of London (1808-11). ... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (633x860, 132 KB) Summary Westminster Hall in the Palace of Westminster, London as drawn by Thomas Rowlandson and Augustus Pugin for Ackermanns Microcosm of London (1808-11). ... Richard II (January 6, 1367 – February 14, 1400) was the son of Edward the Black Prince, Prince of Wales, and Joan The Fair Maid of Kent. He was born in Bordeaux and became his fathers successor when his elder brother died in infancy. ... This photograph from 1896 shows the hammerbeam roof of Westminster Hall. ... Henry Yevele (c. ... Statistics Population: Ordnance Survey OS grid reference: TQ800887 Administration District: Castle Point Shire county: Essex Region: East of England Constituent country: England Sovereign state: United Kingdom Other Ceremonial county: Essex Historic county: Essex Services Police force: Essex Ambulance service: East of England Post office and telephone Post town: BENFLEET Postal... Braubach (Germany) Timber framing is the modern term for the traditional half-timbered construction in which timber provides a visible skeletal frame that supports the whole building. ...


Westminster Hall has served numerous functions. It was primarily used for judicial purposes, housing three of the most important courts in the land: the Court of King's Bench, the Court of Common Pleas, and the Court of Chancery. In 1873, these courts were amalgamated into the High Court of Justice, which continued to meet in Westminster Hall until it moved to the Royal Courts of Justice in 1882. In addition to regular courts, Westminster Hall also housed important state trials, including impeachment trials and the trial of King Charles I at the end of the English Civil War. One of the ancient courts of England, the Kings Bench (or Queens Bench when the monarch is female) is now a division of the High Court of Justice of England and Wales. ... Postdlf 06:03, 2 May 2005 (UTC) Categories: Possible copyright violations ... One of the courts of equity in England and Wales. ... Her Majestys High Court of Justice (known more simply as the High Court) is, together with the Crown Court and the Court of Appeal, part of the Supreme Court of England and Wales in England and Wales: see Courts of England and Wales. ... The main entrance The Royal Courts of Justice, commonly called the Law Courts, is a building in London, which houses the Court of Appeal and the High Court of Justice of England and Wales. ... Depiction of the impeachment trial of Andrew Johnson, then President of the United States, in 1868. ... For other uses, see English Civil War (disambiguation). ...


Westminster Hall has also served ceremonial functions. From the twelfth century to the nineteenth, coronation banquets honouring new monarchs were held here. The last coronation banquet was that of King George IV (1821); his successor, William IV, abandoned the idea because he deemed it too expensive. Westminster Hall has also been used for lyings-in-state during state funerals and ceremonial funerals. Such an honour is usually reserved for the Sovereign and for their consorts; the only non-royals to receive it in the twentieth century were Frederick Sleigh Roberts, 1st Earl Roberts (1914) and Sir Winston Churchill (1965). The most recent lying-in-state was that of Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother in 2002. British coronations are held in Westminster Abbey. ... George IV (George Augustus Frederick) (12 August 1762 – 26 June 1830) was king of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland and Hanover from 29 January 1820 until his death. ... William IV (William Henry; 21 August 1765 – 20 June 1837) was King of the United Kingdom and of Hanover from 26 June 1830 until his death. ... Lying in state is a term used to describe the tradition in which a coffin is placed on view to allow the public at large to pay their respects to the deceased. ... The examples and perspective in this article or section may not represent a worldwide view. ... Frederick Sleigh Roberts, 1st Earl Roberts of Kandahar, Pretoria and Waterford, VC, KG, KP, GCB, OM, GCSI, GCIE, PC (September 30, 1832–November 14, 1914) was a distinguished British soldier and one of the most successful commanders of the Victorian era. ... “Churchill” redirects here. ... Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon, later Queen Elizabeth (Elizabeth Angela Marguerite; 4 August 1900 – 30 March 2002), was the Queen Consort of King George VI of the United Kingdom and the British Dominions from 1936 until his death in 1952. ...

George IV's coronation banquet was held in Westminster Hall in 1821; it was the last such banquet held.
George IV's coronation banquet was held in Westminster Hall in 1821; it was the last such banquet held.

In 1999 and 2003, the staff of the Palace were given special permission to return the Hall to its original purpose, by the holding of two Grand Parties there. George IVs coronation banquet, 1821. ... George IVs coronation banquet, 1821. ...


The two Houses have presented ceremonial Addresses to the Crown in Westminster Hall on important public occasions. For example, Addresses have been presented at Elizabeth II's Silver Jubilee (1977) and Golden Jubilee (2002), the 300th anniversary of the Glorious Revolution (1988), and the fiftieth anniversary of the end of the Second World War (1995). Elizabeth II (Elizabeth Alexandra Mary Windsor; born 21 April 1926) is Queen of sixteen sovereign states, holding each crown and title equally. ... Elizabeth IIs Silver Jubilee and her domestic and international visits proved very popular with her subjects. ... Queen Elizabeth II makes an official appearance at the CBC Headquarters as part of her Jubilee goodwill tour, October 2002. ... The Glorious Revolution, also called the Revolution of 1688, was the overthrow of King James II of England (VII of Scotland) in 1688 by a union of Parliamentarians and the Dutch stadtholder William III of Orange-Nassau (William of Orange), who as a result ascended the English throne as William...


Under reforms made in 1999, the House of Commons uses a specially converted room next to Westminster Hall (not the main hall) as an additional debating chamber. (Usually, however, the room is spoken of as a part of Westminster Hall.) The room is shaped like an elongated horseshoe; it stands in contrast with the main Chamber, in which the benches are placed opposite each other. This pattern is meant to reflect the non-partisan nature of the debates held in Westminster Hall. Westminster Hall sittings occur thrice each week; controversial matters are not usually discussed.


Other rooms

There are several other important rooms that lie on the first floor of the Palace. At the extreme southern end of the Palace is the Robing Room, the room in which the Sovereign prepares for the State Opening of Parliament by donning official robes and wearing the Imperial State Crown. Paintings by William Dyce in the Robing Room depict scenes from the legend of King Arthur. Immediately next to the Robing Room is the Royal Gallery, which is sometimes used by foreign dignitaries who wish to address both Houses. The walls are decorated by two enormous paintings by Daniel Maclise: "The Death of Nelson" (depicting Lord Nelson's demise at the Battle of Trafalgar) and "The Meeting of Wellington and Blücher" (showing the Duke of Wellington meeting Gebhard Leberecht von Blücher at the Battle of Waterloo). The Imperial State Crown is one of the British Crown Jewels. ... King Lear and the Fool in the Storm William Dyce (September 19, 1806, Aberdeen, Scotland—February 14, 1864, London) was a distinguished Scottish artist]. Dyce began his career at the Royal Academy schools, and then traveled to Rome for the first time in 1825. ... A bronze Arthur in plate armour with visor raised and with jousting shield wearing Kastenbrust armour (early 15th century) by Peter Vischer, typical of later anachronistic depictions of Arthur. ... A detail of the engraving of Maclises 1842 painting The Play-scene in Hamlet, portraying the moment when the guilt of Claudius is revealed. ... Vice-Admiral Horatio Nelson, 1st Viscount Nelson, KB (29 September 1758 – 21 October 1805) was a British admiral famous for his participation in the Napoleonic Wars, most notably in the Battle of Trafalgar, a decisive British victory in the war, where he lost his life. ... Combatants United Kingdom First French Empire Kingdom of Spain Commanders Horatio Nelson, 1st Viscount Nelson † Pierre Charles Silvestre de Villeneuve Strength 27 ships of the line and 6 others. ... Field Marshal Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, KG, GCB, GCH, PC, FRS (c. ... Gebhard Leberecht von Blücher. ... Combatants First French Empire Seventh Coalition: United Kingdom Kingdom of Prussia Kingdom of the United Netherlands Kingdom of Hanover Duchy of Nassau Duchy of Brunswick Commanders Napoleon Bonaparte, Michel Ney Duke of Wellington, Gebhard von Blücher Prince William of Orange Strength 73,000 67,000 Coalition 60,000 Prussian...


To the immediate south of the Lords Chamber is the Prince's Chamber, a small anteroom used by Members of the Lords. The Prince's Chamber is decorated with paintings of members of the Tudor dynasty. To the immediate north of the Lord's Chamber is the Peers' Lobby, where Lords informally discuss or negotiate matters during sittings of the House. For other uses, see Tudor (disambiguation). ...


The centrepiece of the Palace of Westminster is the octagonal Central Lobby, which lies immediately beyond the Peers' Lobby. The lobby, which lies immediately below the Central Tower, is adorned with statues of statesmen and with mosaics representing the United Kingdom's constituent nations' patron saints: St George for England, St Andrew for Scotland, St David for Wales, and St Patrick for Ireland (these predate the secession of the Republic). Constituents may meet their Members of Parliament in the Central Lobby. Beyond the Central Lobby, next to the Commons Chamber, lies the Members' Lobby, in which Members of Parliament hold discussions or negotiations. The Members' Lobby contains statues of several former Prime Ministers, including David Lloyd George, Winston Churchill, Clement Attlee and Margaret Thatcher. Mosaic is the art of decoration with small pieces of colored glass, stone or other material. ... For alternate uses, see Saint George (disambiguation) Saint George on horseback rides alongside a wounded dragon being led by a princess, late 19th century engraving. ... Saint Andrew (Greek: Andreas, manly), the Christian Apostle, brother of Saint Peter, was born at Bethsaida on the Lake of Galilee. ... Saint David (c. ... Statue of Saint Patrick Saint Patrick (died March 17, 462, 492, or 493), is the patron saint of Ireland. ... Margaret Thatcher unveils a statue of herself in the Members Lobby of the House of Commons The Members Lobby is a hallway in the Palace of Westminster used by members of the Parliament of the United Kingdom. ... David Lloyd George, 1st Earl Lloyd George of Dwyfor, OM, PC (17 January 1863 – 26 March 1945) was a British statesman who guided Britain and the British Empire through World War I and the postwar settlement as the Liberal Party Prime Minister, 1916-1922. ... “Churchill” redirects here. ... Clement Richard Attlee, 1st Earl Attlee, KG, OM, CH, PC (3 January 1883 – 8 October 1967) was Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1945 to 1951. ... Margaret Hilda Thatcher, Baroness Thatcher, LG, OM, PC, FRS (née Roberts; born 13 October 1925) served as British Prime Minister from 1979 to 1990 and leader of the Conservative Party from 1975 until 1990, being the first and to date only woman to hold either post. ...


There are two suites of libraries on the Principal Floor, overlooking the river, for the House of Lords and House of Commons Library. The House of Commons Library is the library and information resource of the lower house of the British Parliament. ...


The Palace of Westminster also includes state apartments for the presiding officers of the two Houses. The official residence of the Speaker stands at the northern end of the Palace, whilst the Lord Chancellor's apartments are at the southern end. Each day, the Speaker and Lord Chancellor take part in formal processions from their apartments to their respective Chambers. // An official residence is the residence at which heads of state, heads of government, gubernatorial or other senior figures officially reside. ...


The facilities available to Members of Parliament are unrivaled anywhere in the world. There are 19 bars and restaurants in the palace of Westminster,[1] many of which never close whilst the house is sitting. There is a shooting range and a gymnasium, and even a hair salon. Parliament also has a souvenirs shop, where items on sale range from House of Commons key-rings and china to House of Commons Champagne!


Security

The Gentleman Usher of the Black Rod oversees security for the House of Lords, and the Serjeant at Arms does the same for the House of Commons. These officers, however, have primarily ceremonial roles outside the actual chambers of their respective Houses. Security is the responsibility of the Palace of Westminster Division of the Metropolitan Police, the police force for the Greater London area. Tradition still dictates that only the Serjeant at Arms may enter the Commons chamber armed. The Gentleman Usher of the Black Rod, generally shortened to just Black Rod, is an official in the parliaments of a number of Commonwealth countries. ... A Serjeant at Arms (also spelt Sergeant at Arms, and sometimes Serjeant-at-Arms) is an officer appointed by a deliberative body, usually a legislature, to keep order during its meetings. ... The Palace of Westminster Division (also called SO17, from its Specialist Operations designation) is a branch of the London Metropolitan Police responsible for the security of the Palace of Westminster (Houses of Parliament). ... The Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) is the name currently used by the territorial police force which is responsible for Greater London other than the City of London (the responsibility of the City of London Police). ... Greater London is the top-level administrative subdivision covering London, England. ...

The assassination of Prime Minister Spencer Perceval in 1812 in the lobby of the House of Commons
The assassination of Prime Minister Spencer Perceval in 1812 in the lobby of the House of Commons

Probably the most famous attempt to breach the security of the Palace of Westminster was the Gunpowder Plot of 1605. The plot was a conspiracy among some Roman Catholic gentry to place explosive beneath the Palace and detonate it during the State Opening of Parliament. If executed the explosion would have destroyed the palace, killing the Protestant King James I, his family, and most of the aristocracy. The plot was discovered, however, when a Roman Catholic nobleman, William Parker, 4th Baron Monteagle, received an anonymous letter warning him not to attend the State Opening. The authorities conducted a search of the Palace, discovered the gunpowder, as well as one of the conspirators, Guy Fawkes. The conspirators were later tried for high treason in Westminster Hall, and were hanged, drawn and quartered. Since 1605, the Yeomen of the Guard have conducted a ceremonial search of the Palace's cellars prior to each State Opening of Parliament. Image File history File linksMetadata Assassination_of_Spencer_Perceval. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Assassination_of_Spencer_Perceval. ... Spencer Perceval (1 November 1762 – 11 May 1812) was a British statesman and Prime Minister. ... For the overture by Tchaikovsky, see 1812 Overture; For the wars, see War of 1812 (USA - United Kingdom) or Patriotic War of 1812 (France - Russia) For the Siberia Airlines plane crashed over the Black Sea on October 4, 2001, see Siberia Airlines Flight 1812 1812 was a leap year starting... A contemporary sketch of the conspirators. ... The Roman Catholic Church, most often spoken of simply as the Catholic Church, is the largest Christian church, with over one billion members. ... James VI and I (19 June 1566 – 27 March 1625) was King of Scots as James VI, and King of England and King of Ireland as James I. He ruled in Scotland as James VI from 24 July 1567, when he was only one year old, succeeding his mother Mary... William Parker, 4th Baron Monteagle and 11th Baron Morley (1575 - July 1, 1622), was the eldest son of Edward Parker, 10th Baron Morley (d. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... To be hanged, drawn and quartered was the penalty once ordained in England for treason. ... Yeomen of the Guard in the procession to the annual service of the Order of the Garter at Windsor Castle Yeomen of the Guard during QEI reign For the Gilbert and Sullivan operetta, see The Yeomen of the Guard The Queens Body Guard of the Yeomen of the Guard...

Westminster Palace at night
Westminster Palace at night

The previous Palace of Westminster was also the site of a prime ministerial assassination in 1812. While in the lobby of the House of Commons, on his way to a parliamentary inquiry, Spencer Perceval was shot and killed by John Bellingham. Perceval remains the only British Prime Minister to have been assassinated. Image File history File links Metadata Size of this preview: 800 × 600 pixelsFull resolution (2848 × 2136 pixel, file size: 3. ... Image File history File links Metadata Size of this preview: 800 × 600 pixelsFull resolution (2848 × 2136 pixel, file size: 3. ... Spencer Perceval (1 November 1762 – 11 May 1812) was a British statesman and Prime Minister. ... John Bellingham (c. ...


On 17 June 1974 a 20 pound (9 kg) bomb planted by the Provisional IRA exploded in Westminster Hall. In 1979 Airey Neave, a prominent Conservative politician, was killed by a car bomb as he drove out of the Palace's new car park. Both the Irish National Liberation Army and the Provisional IRA claimed responsibility for the murder; security forces believe the former were responsible. With rising concern about the possibility of a truck full of explosives being driven into the building (despite the effective cessation by that time of Northern Irish terrorism), a series of concrete blocks was placed in the roadway in 2003. is the 168th day of the year (169th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1974 (MCMLXXIV) was a common year starting on Tuesday (link will display full calendar) of the 1974 Gregorian calendar. ... The Provisional Irish Republican Army (Irish: Óglaigh na hÉireann) (IRA; also referred to as the PIRA, the Provos, or by some of its supporters as the Army or the RA.[2]) is an Irish Republican, left wing[3] paramilitary organisation that, until the Belfast Agreement, sought to end Northern... Airey Neave in his German escape uniform. ... For other uses, see Car bomb (disambiguation). ... The Irish National Liberation Army (INLA) is an Irish republican paramilitary organization which was formed on December 8, 1974. ...


The Palace has also been the site of a number of acts of politically motivated "direct action". In 1970 a canister of tear gas was thrown into the Chamber of the House of Commons to protest against conditions in Northern Ireland. In 1978 Yana Mintoff and another dissident threw manure. Concern about such attacks and a possible chemical or biological attack led to the construction of a glass screen across the Strangers' Gallery in early 2004. Direct action is a form of political activism which seeks immediate remedy for perceived ills, as opposed to indirect actions such as electing representatives who promise to provide remedy at some later date. ... Related Compounds Related compounds SDBS Supplementary data page Structure and properties n, εr, etc. ... Yana Mintoff is the daughter of the former Prime Minister of Malta, Dom Mintoff. ... Animal manure is often a mixture of animals feces and bedding straw, as in this example from a stable. ...


The new barrier did not cover the front three rows, which are termed the "Distinguished Strangers' Gallery" and in May of that year protesters from Fathers 4 Justice attacked Prime Minister Tony Blair with flour bombs from this part. In September, five protesters opposed to the proposed ban on fox hunting disrupted the proceedings of the House of Commons by running into the Chamber. Fathers 4 Justice Logo Fathers 4 Justice (or F4J) began as a fathers’ rights organization in the United Kingdom. ... Tony Blair being hit by one of the missiles The Fathers 4 Justice House of Commons protest, also dubbed The Fun Powder Plot, is an incident that took place on May 19, 2004. ... A fox hunt Fox hunting is a form of hunting for foxes using a pack of scent hounds. ...


Despite the recent security breaches, members of the public continue to have access to the Gallery. Visitors have to pass through metal detectors and their possessions are scanned. Police from the Palace of Westminster Division of the Metropolitan Police, supported by some armed police from the Diplomatic Protection Group, are always on duty in and around the Palace. It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with Inductive sensor. ... The Palace of Westminster Division (also called SO17, from its Specialist Operations designation) is a branch of the London Metropolitan Police responsible for the security of the Palace of Westminster (Houses of Parliament). ... Metropolitan Police redirects here. ... The Diplomatic Protection Group (DPG or SO16, from its Specialist Operations designation) is a branch of the London Metropolitan Police which provides protection and support to members of the Diplomatic Community and members of HM Government. ...


Culture and tourism

The exterior of the Palace of Westminster — especially the Clock Tower — is one of the most visited tourist attractions in London. The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) classifies the Palace of Westminster along with neighbouring Westminster Abbey and St. Margaret's as a World Heritage Site. It is also a Grade I listed building. There is no casual access to the interior, but it may be seen in a number of ways: Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... Claude Monet also known as Oscar-Claude Monet or Claude Oscar Monet (November 14, 1840 – December 5, 1926)[1] was a founder of French impressionist painting, and the most consistent and prolific practitioner of the movements philosophy of expressing ones perceptions before nature, especially as applied to plein... 1900 (MCMIII) was a common year starting on Thursday (link will display calendar) of the Gregorian calendar or a common year starting on Friday of the 13-day slower Julian calendar. ... The West building of the National Gallery of Art with the East building visible behind and to to the left The National Gallery of Art is an art museum, located on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. The museum was established in 1937 by the Congress, with funds for... Aerial photo (looking NW) of the Washington Monument and the White House in Washington, DC. Washington, D.C., officially the District of Columbia (also known as D.C.; Washington; the Nations Capital; the District; and, historically, the Federal City) is the capital city and administrative district of the United... UNESCO logo UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) is a specialized agency of the United Nations established in 1945. ... The Collegiate Church of St Peter, Westminster, which is almost always referred to by its original name of Westminster Abbey, is a mainly Gothic church, on the scale of a cathedral (and indeed often mistaken for one), in Westminster, London, just to the west of the Palace of Westminster. ... The Anglican church of St. ... A UNESCO World Heritage Site is a specific site (such as a forest, mountain, lake, desert, monument, building, complex, or city) that has been nominated and confirmed for inclusion on the list maintained by the international World Heritage Programme administered by the UNESCO World Heritage Committee, composed of 21 State... Buckingham Palace, a Grade I listed building. ...

  • Viewing debates from the public galleries of the House of Commons or the House of Lords: UK residents may obtain tickets in advance from their MP. It is also possible for both UK residents and overseas visitors to queue for admission on the day, but capacity is limited and there is no guarantee of admission. Only a very small part of the Palace's interior may be seen. Either House may exclude "strangers" if it desires to sit in private.
  • Tours during Parliamentary sessions: UK residents may apply to their MP or a peer for a place on a guided tour of Parliament while it is in session. British educational institutions may also arrange a tour through their MP. The system for issuing overseas visitors with permits to tour the Palace while Parliament is in session has been suspended temporarily.
  • Summer opening: tours are available during a two-month period during the summer when Parliament is not sitting. These tours are open to both UK residents and overseas visitors. Advance bookings are recommended. [1]
  • Television Viewing: live broadcasts of Parliamentary sessions can be viewed on BBC Parliament; recorded footage is shown when Parliament is not in session. The sessions are also occasionally rebroadcast in the United States via C-SPAN.

Since 1 August 2005, under a provision of the Serious Organised Crime and Police Act 2005 it has been illegal to hold a protest, without the prior permission of the Metropolitan Police, within a designated area extending half a mile around the Palace. BBC Parliament is a British television channel from the BBC. It broadcasts live and recorded coverage of the British House of Commons and House of Lords, Select Committees, the Northern Ireland Assembly, the Scottish Parliament and the Welsh Assembly, and occasionally from the General Synod of the Church of England. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... is the 213th day of the year (214th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... The Serious Organised Crime and Police Act 2005 (SOCPA) (2005 c. ...


See also

  • Jewel Tower - the only surviving part of the medieval palace other than Westminster Hall

The Jewel Tower in London is one of only two surviving sections of the medieval royal Palace of Westminster, the other being Westminster Hall. ...

References

“PDF” redirects here. ... A kibibyte (a contraction of kilo binary byte) is a unit of information or computer storage, commonly abbreviated KiB (never kiB). 1 kibibyte = 210 bytes = 1,024 bytes The kibibyte is closely related to the kilobyte, which can be used either as a synonym for kibibyte or to refer to... “PDF” redirects here. ... A kibibyte (a contraction of kilo binary byte) is a unit of information or computer storage, commonly abbreviated KiB (never kiB). 1 kibibyte = 210 bytes = 1,024 bytes The kibibyte is closely related to the kilobyte, which can be used either as a synonym for kibibyte or to refer to... “PDF” redirects here. ... A kibibyte (a contraction of kilo binary byte) is a unit of information or computer storage, commonly abbreviated KiB (never kiB). 1 kibibyte = 210 bytes = 1,024 bytes The kibibyte is closely related to the kilobyte, which can be used either as a synonym for kibibyte or to refer to...

External links

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Part of a series of articles on the History of London
Evolution

Londinium · Lundenwic · City of London · City of Westminster · County of London · Greater London Image File history File links Commons-logo. ... London has a recorded history that goes back over 2,000 years. ... London has a recorded history that goes back over 2,000 years. ... London has a recorded history that goes back over 2,000 years. ... Motto: Domine dirige nos Latin: Lord, guide us Shown within Greater London Sovereign state United Kingdom Constituent country England Region Greater London Status sui generis, City and Ceremonial County Admin HQ Guildhall Government  - Leadership see text  - Mayor John Stuttard  - MP Mark Field  - London Assembly John Biggs Area  - City  1. ... The City of Westminster is a borough of London, England with city status. ... The County of London was an administrative county and ceremonial county of England from 1889 to 1965. ... Greater London is the top-level administrative subdivision covering London, England. ...

Local government

Metropolitan Board of Works · London County Council · Greater London Council · Greater London Authority · London Assembly · Mayor of London The history of local government in London, England can be broken down into a number of periods: History of local government in the United Kingdom History of London ^ a b Barlow, I., Metropolitan Government, (1991) ^ Saint, A., Politics and the people of London: the London County Council (1889-1965), (1989... The Metropolitan Board of Works (MBW) was the principal instrument of London-wide government from 1855 until the establishment of the London County Council in 1889. ... London County Council emblem is still seen today on buildings, especially housing, from that era London County Council (LCC) was the principal local government body for the County of London from 1889 until 1965, when it was replaced by the Greater London Council. ... Arms of the Greater London Council The Greater London Council (GLC) was the top-tier local government administrative body for Greater London from 1965 to 1986. ... The Greater London Authority (GLA) administers the 1579 km² (610 sq. ... The London Assembly is an elected body that supervises the Greater London Authority and the Mayor of London. ... Ken Livingstone, the current Mayor of London The Mayor of London is an elected politician in London, United Kingdom. ...

Events

Peasants' Revolt · Black Death · Great Plague · Great Fire of London · The Great Stink · The Great Exhibition · The Blitz · Swinging London · The London Plan · 7/7 bombings · Olympic Games (1908 · 1948 · 2012) The end of the revolt: Wat Tyler (also spelt Tighler) killed by Walworth while Richard II watches, and a second image of Richard addressing the crowd The Peasants Revolt, Tyler’s Rebellion, or the Great Rising of 1381 was one of a number of popular revolts in late medieval Europe... This article concerns the mid fourteenth century pandemic. ... A bill of mortality for the plague year of 1665. ... Detail of painting from 1666 of the Great Fire of London by an unknown artist, depicting the fire as it would have appeared on the evening of Tuesday, 4 September from a boat in the vicinity of Tower Wharf. ... Michael Faraday giving his card to Father Thames, caricature commenting on a letter of Faradays on the state of the river in the Times in Summer 1855 The Great Stink or The Big Stink was a time in the summer of 1858 during which the smell of untreated sewage... The Great Exhibition in Hyde Park 1851. ... For other uses, see Blitz. ... Swinging London is a catchall term applied to a variety of dynamic cultural trends in the United Kingdom (centred in London) in the second half of the 1960s. ... Ken Livingstone, the current Mayor of London The Mayor of London is an elected politician in London, United Kingdom. ... Locations of the bombings, overlaid onto a real-path map of the London Underground The 7 July 2005 London bombings (also called the 7/7 bombings) were a series of coordinated terrorist bomb blasts that hit Londons public transport system during the morning rush hour. ... There have been two London Olympics (London hosting the Olympic Games), in 1908 and 1948, with a third scheduled for 2012. ... The 1908 Summer Olympics, officially known as the Games of the IV Olympiad, were held in 1908 in London, England. ... The Games of the XIV Olympiad were held in 1948 at Wembley Stadium in London, England. ... “London 2012” redirects here. ...

Structures

St Paul's Cathedral · Tower of London · Palace of Whitehall · Westminster Hall · London Bridge · Westminster Abbey · The Monument This article is about the cathedral church of the diocese of London. ... For other uses, see Tower of London (disambiguation) Her Majestys Royal Palace and Fortress The Tower of London, more commonly known as the Tower of London (and historically simply as The Tower), is an historic monument in central London, England on the north bank of the River Thames. ... The Palace of Whitehall by Hendrick Danckerts. ... Clock Tower and New Palace Yard from the west The Palace of Westminster, on the banks of the River Thames in Westminster, London, is the home of the House of Commons and the House of Lords, which form the Parliament of the United Kingdom. ... For other uses, see London Bridge (disambiguation). ... The Collegiate Church of St Peter, Westminster, which is almost always referred to by its original name of Westminster Abbey, is a mainly Gothic church, on the scale of a cathedral (and indeed often mistaken for one), in Westminster, London, just to the west of the Palace of Westminster. ... The Monument, London to commemorate the Great Fire of London, designed by Sir Christopher Wren The viewing platform The Monument seen from the ground The Monument to the Fire of London, more commonly known as The Monument, is a 61-metre (202-foot) tall stone Roman doric column in the...

City of London

Corporation of London · Lord Mayor of London · Guildhall · Livery Companies · Lord Mayor's Show · Bank of England Coat of arms of the City of London as shown on Blackfriars station. ... Current Lord Mayor of London John Stuttard during the parade on November 11th, 2006 Michael Berry Savory, Previous Lord Mayor (2004–2005) The Right Honourable Lord Mayor of London is the Mayor of the City of London and head of the Corporation of London. ... The Guildhall The Guildhall complex in c. ... Livery Companies are trade associations based in the City of London. ... In 1747, the Lord Mayor went to the City of Westminster on a barge via the River Thames. ... Headquarters Coordinates , , Governor Mervyn King Central Bank of United Kingdom Currency Pound sterling ISO 4217 Code GBP Base borrowing rate 5. ...

Services

Bow Street Runners · Metropolitan Police Service · London Ambulance Service · London Fire Brigade · London sewerage system 19th Century depiction of the Bow Street Magistrates Court, to which the Bow Street Runners were attached. ... The Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) is the name currently used by the territorial police force which is responsible for Greater London other than the City of London (the responsibility of the City of London Police). ... The London Ambulance Service (LAS) is the largest ambulance service in the world that does not directly charge its patients for its services. ... The London Fire Brigade (LFB) is the statutory fire and rescue service for London, England. ... The new Abbey Mills Pumping Station The original Abbey Mills pumping station The London sewerage system is part of the water infrastructure serving London. ...


Coordinates: 51°29′57.5″N, 00°07′29.1″W Map of Earth showing lines of latitude (horizontally) and longitude (vertically), Eckert VI projection; large version (pdf, 1. ...



  Results from FactBites:
 
Encyclopedia4U - Palace of Westminster - Encyclopedia Article (467 words)
The Palace of Westminster is the home of both Houses of Parliament in the United Kingdom.
It was originally (and still officially is) a Royal Palace, which led to the area becoming the centre of government in the United Kingdom as it transitioned from a monarchy to a parliamentary democracy.
The palace was the main London residence of the monarchs of England until Henry VIII took over the Palace of Whitehall in 1530.
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