Westminster Palace, rebuilt from the year 1840 on the site of important medieval remains, is a fine example of neo-Gothic architecture. The site – which also comprises the small medieval Church of Saint Margaret, built in Perpendicular Gothic style, and Westminster Abbey, where all the sovereigns since the 11th century have been crowned – is of great historic and symbolic significance.
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[Applause] famous around the world for keeping impeccable time the Big Bend clock tower became fully operational in 1859 the name Big Ben actual refers to the Bell House within the tower the Bell itself weighs almost 14 tons and takes its name from the man who first ordered the Bell Sir Benjamin Hall so in 96 meters high the clock tower also houses a large four faced clock designed by Augustus Putin the British Parliament and most of the legislative processes and Britain's take place at the stunning houses of parliament also known as the Palace of Westminster the building is home to both the House of Lords and the House of Commons situated on the northern banks of the Thames it is a most unmistakable site the Victoria Tower central tower and clock tower rise high above the other perpendicular gothic style rectilinear towers and pointed arches the Magnificent Gothic Revival masterpiece we see today was built between 1840 and 1888 the work of Charles Barry the palace is one of the biggest Parliament houses in the world it contains twelve hundred rooms 100 staircases over three kilometres of corridors most of it dates back to 1834 following a fire that burned down the earlier building the Palace of Westminster is located on the north bank of the River Thames though due to a bend in that section of the river it is on the west side of the Thames along the whole length of the building at ground level parallel to the river is a roadway leading into several courtyards with a further line of courts on the west side in its initial role as a royal residence during the middle ages the positioning of the Palace of Westminster on the north bank of the Thames was considered to be of strategic importance now the houses of parliament are not only the epicentre of political life in the United Kingdom but one of the most popular tourist attractions as well located next to the houses of parliament in the heart of London Westminster Abbey is a must-see for any visitor to London with its oldest parts dating to the Year 1050 some of the most glorious medieval architecture in London Westminster Abbey is steeped in more than a thousand years of history Benedictine monks first came to this site in the middle of the 10th century establishing a tradition of daily worship that continues to this day the Abbey has been a Coronation Church since 1066 as well as the final resting place of 17 monarchs according to tradition a shrine was first founded here in 616 on a site then known as thorny Island it was said to have been miraculously consecrated after a fisherman on the River Thames saw a vision of st. Peter Westminster Abbey has always enjoyed close links with a monarchy not least in its unbroken role as a coronation church kings and queens have also been significant benefactors of the Abbey Westminster Abbey or to use its formal name the Collegiate Church of st. Peter Westminster is a royal peculiar this means that it is a free chapel the sovereign exempt from any ecclesiastical jurisdiction other than that of the sovereign Royall peculiars originated in anglo-saxon times and developed as a result of the unique relationship between the norman and planet Janek Kings and the English church the interior is a veritable Museum of English history a monument to Isaac Newton stands against the choir screen to the north of the entrance to the choir the monument in white and gray marble bears a Latin inscription and supports a sarcophagus with large scroll feet and a relief panel soon the abbey has the highest gothic vault in England which was made to seem even higher by making the Isles narrow the Englishness is also apparent in the elaborate moldings of the main arches the lavish use of polished Purbeck marble for the columns and the overall sculptural decoration the sanctuary is the heart of the abbey where the high altar stands the altar and Rayados above it were designed by Sir Scott while the Last Supper mosaic is the work of Antonio Salvati it is in the present choir in Victorian Gothic style that twenty two boys and twelve lay vicars sing the daily services the chapel screams and tunes add to the abbeys display of color the glory of the Lady Chapel is it's delicately carved fan vaulted roof with hanging pendants constructed on half concealed transverse arches this early English Gothic Abbey is one of the greatest examples of ecclesiastical architecture on earth but it's far more than that it is the shrine of a nation and the place in which most of its rulers were crowned and where many library