St Mary's Church, Arlington, VA
Hampton Court Palace
The grandest Tudor
residence in England. Built from 1514 onwards by Cardinal Wolsey as a
country home, he presented it to King Henry VIII in 1525 who continued to build
until 1540. Sir Christopher Wren added extra buildings from 1689 for King
William III and Queen Mary II.
Capital City of England & the United Kingdom
Within a few years of invading Britain in 43AD the Romans had built forts and
towns across the land. They linked these outposts with a number of well
constructed roads, some of which had to cross a wide tidal river (Thames).
The Roman engineers eventually picked a crossing point from generally marshy
ground on the South bank (with islands of firm ground) to an area on the North
Bank situated on two low hills, these hills formed the highest and driest site
on the tidal river. At this point the Romans built their bridge and before
long a settlement grew up on the hills and then a City took shape, the Romans
called it Londinium. The landscape that greeted the Romans now lies deep
beneath the modern city, upto 8 metres deep, the reason, every new building over
the past 2,000 years was built on top of the rubble of the old.
Horse Guards Parade
The former tiltyard or
jousting field of Whitehall Palace, used for the ceremony of Trooping the Colour
each June to celebrate the Queens official birthday. The Horse Guards
building by which one enters the parade ground from the direction of Whitehall
was reconstructed in 1750 prior to which it was the gatehouse of the Palace of
Westminster. The horse mounted guards who stand duty under two archways
either side of the clock tower stand guard for just one hour at a time not all
day. The soldiers belong either to the Life Guards (red tunics & white
plumes) who formed the bodyguard for Charles I or the Royal Horse
Guards (blue with red plumes) who grew out of a regiment formed by Cromwell.
Both regiments now belong to the Household Cavalry which provides the Queens
Bodyguard on all state occasions.
Houses of Parliament
The present building
occupies the site of the old Royal Palace. The oldest surviving part of
this palace is Westminster Hall (some of the walls dating back to 1097/99).
In 1840 Sir Charles Barry with the help of his eccentric assistant, Pugin began
building the neo Gothic new house which still graces Parliament Square.
Although it was badly bombed in 1941 the Commons Chamber was completely
destroyed, the new one was opened in 1950. As you look at the palace from
the square the commons are on the left and the lords on the right.
Standing a little to the left of the building is Westminster Hall. This
ancient hall is 290ft long, 68ft wide and 92ft high, it was built in 1097 by
William II and modernised by Richard II in 1399. It was here that Charles
I was condemned to death in 1649, Edward II abdicated in 1327, Oliver Cromwell
was installed as protector and the Guy Fawkes conspirators sentenced to death.
It was the centre of London life, a very public place in which to have sentence
passed. it remains lofty, beautiful, impressive and empty, the oldest part of
the palace and the most lovely.
One of the longest
rivers in England at 215 miles in length, it flows from its source near
Cheltenham to the sea through some of the most beautiful countryside before
becoming the main artery that the wealth of Britain has been bourn. No
river can have influenced a nations destiny more, from Roman times to the
This ancient hall is 290ft long, 68ft long and 92ft high. It was built in
1097 by William II and modernised by Richard II in 1399. It was here that
Charles I was condemned to death in 1649. Edward II abdicated in 1327.
Oliver Cromwell was installed as protector and the Guy Fawkes conspirators
sentenced to death. It was the centre of London life, a very public place
in which to have sentence passed. It remains lofty, beautiful, impressive
and empty, the oldest part of the palace and the most lovely.
Churchill War Rooms
In 1940 as the bombs rained
down on London, Winston Churchill, his Cabinet, his Chiefs of Staff and
intelligence chiefs were meeting below ground in a fortified basement in
Whitehall, later to be known as the Cabinet War Rooms. They offered
shelter in which to work, sleep and live for as long as necessary. When
the war ended the lights were switched off and the rooms left silent and
untouched for many years. The rooms were in operational use from 27th
August 1939 to the Japanese surrender in 1945 the war cabinet held more than 100
meetings in these somewhat cramped rooms. Without doubt some of the most
important decisions of the Second World War were taken here.
Until the 18th Century the
original site was occupied by Buckingham House which was bought by George III in
1762. When George IV acceded the throne in 1820 he commissioned John Nash
to build a palace fit for a King on the same site. Much of the original
structure and decoration survives to this day.
in 1622 and designed by Indigo Jones, it was the first building in London to
embody the classical Palladium style together with the use of Portland stone in
the construction. Built originally as a part of Whitehall Palace it was
the only building to escape the great fire which destroyed the Palace in 1698.
The main hall is 115ft long and 60ft wide but it is the ceiling which catches
the eye. Painted by Rubens for Charles 1st in 1629-34 it
depicts the Apotheoses of the Stuart Dynasty in nine panels, which should be
viewed from the far end of the room. In 1649 Charles 1st
stepped out of one of the windows of the hall on his way to the scaffold erected
outside in the yard, to his execution. Ironically Charles II celebrated
his restoration to the throne here 20 years later. Still used for state
banquets and official functions by the Government and the Queen.
10 Downing Street
Has been the official
residence of the Prime Minister since Sir Robert Walpole, the first Prime
Minister lived here in 1732. The street was named after its builder, Sir
George Downing. The iron gates were erected for security reasons in 1989.
Legend has it that the
first Church built on Thorney Island in the Thames was built by King Segbert in
the 7th Century, there is also mention of a Charter from King Offa of
Mercia to the people of Westminster granting land. We also have a Charter from
King Edgar in the 10th Century for the restoring of the Benedictine
Abbey. It is also written that a substantial foundation existed in Westminster
when King Edward the Confessor became King in 1042. We do know that Edward
started to build a Church here close to the previous building and it was
consecrated on 28th December 1065. Eight days later Edward died and
he was buried in front of the high altar.
The most ancient part of
this historic city occupies a rugged hill top rising over 200 feet above the
river Witham. Evidence has been found of occupation by Celtic people who
called the settlement Lindon. On the arrival of the Roman IXth legion in
A.D.47 the name was Latinised to Lindum Colonia. Geographical position,
elevation and the river all helped to make Lincoln an important centre even from
those pre Roman days. Roman Lincoln had fine colannaded streets and
elaborate public baths, also drinking water supplied in earthenware pipes under
pressure from over one and a half miles away. When the Romans departed
they left behind a road and canal system, sewers, working farms and a wealth of
tiles and stone. During the Anglo-Saxon times, Lincoln was a part of the
kingdom of Mercia. With the arrival of the Danes Lincoln became a part of
the Danelaw where streets like Saltergate, Danesgate & Hungate bear witness
(similar to York) The Normans made Lincoln one of the most important
cities in the kingdom. The castle was built in 1068 just 2 years after the
Battle of Hastings. The city is full of wonderful buildings, cobb hall
14th Century, a fine Norman house at 15 The Stait. The castle square some
lovely 16th Century buildings, Greyfriars a 13th Century building originally
designed as a Church (now the museum) the list is endless. The city is now
a busy place providing employment to many thousands in the engineering industry.
The third largest in
England occupying approx 57,000 sq ft. the original building was started in 1072
and fully built by 1092 but after a great fire and of all things an earthquake a
new Cathedral was started in 1192 built in the English style and today we see it
as the triple towered cathedral church of St Mary. An important feature of
the Cathedral is the arcade designed by Sir Christopher Wren in 1674 which was
the year he started the rebuilding of St Pauls.
by William the Conqueror in 1068, built to be a invulnerable stronghold.
The battlemented castle is most impressive. The enclosed area encompasses
approx 6 acres with lawns and trees. The walls are 8 to 10ft thick and double
that amount in height. Two great detached mounds on the South side are the
observatory tower, with great views of Lincoln and the uprights of the Norman
keep. Cobb Hall was added in the 14th Century to be used as a
place of punishment. One can still see the iron rings to which prisoners
where fastened to. The roof of the tower was a place of public execution
till 1868. One of the original copies of Magna Carta is still kept here.
One other interesting feature to look out for within the passage of the castle
gateway is all that is left of the Eleanor Cross. This was positioned
close the priory where the body of Eleanor of Castile, the wife of Edward the
1st was embalmed before starting on its famous journey South to Westminster
Abbey. This, the first of the crosses erected at each resting place of her body
on its funeral procession from Nottinghamshire to the Capital. The last
one at Charing Cross in London where the body lay on the final night before
burial at the Abbey.
The largest & grandest
house of the first Elizabethan age. built between 1565 & 1587 by William Cecil.
The house is still a family home yet full of superb paintings and antiques, a
treasure to feast upon. The art collection is one of the most impressive
17th Century Italian painting collections in the world, with over 300 great
works on display in the state rooms, which also includes work by Gainsborough,
Kneller and Lawrence. The tour will allow access to over 18 state rooms
filled with superb porcelain from all over Europe and a collection of early
Japanese ceramics, together with furniture of the highest quality including a
bed once used by Queen Victoria. Try and find time to wander in the
grounds, acres of park land, originally landscaped by Capability Brown.
Mature trees and plenty of space for the youngsters to let off some steam.
St Botolph's Church, Boston
One of largest and grandest Parish Churches in England, it could be said almost
Cathedral like in its proportion. It was started in 1309, although the
magnificent West tower (known as the stump) rising to a height of 272ft the
tallest in England, was not started until 1450 and completed in 1520. The tower
is crowned by a lovely octagon and once carried a beacon to guide ships into
Boston harbour, on a clear day Lincoln Cathedral can be seen.
Formerly the Parish Church of Sheffield and the history of Christianity on this
site go back nearly 1,000 years. It was in the early 12th Century
when William de Lovetot built the first Church on this site. The present
Cathedral was started in 1439 and is perpendicular in style with a crocketed
spire. However, this building has been extensively altered and enlarged over the