Jewel Tower, Westminster

Abingdon Street, SW1P 3JY


Address:Abingdon Street, SW1P 3JY
Map:See Jewel Tower, Westminster on a map
Nearest Station:Westminster
Jewel Tower, Westminster, exterior picture


About: The Jewel Tower can be found on Abingdon Street, opposite the Southern side of the Houses of Parliament. It is the only surviving part of the Medieval Palace of Westminster which was burnt to the ground in 1834. The building was built to an "L" shaped design as to not interfere with the garden of Edward III. A moat was dug around the tower on two sides. The tower was built to house the Kings Wardrobe- a collection of jewels and decorative items. The ground floor of the building retains its vaulting and is adorned with grotesque heads and bosses. A marble table dating from the thirteenth century is also on display here. The Jewel Tower's last incarnation as the Board of Trade's Standards Department is evident through the displays of weights and measuring equipment on show. Today the Jewel Tower is home to the "Parliament Past and Present" exhibition which chronicles the evolution in the government across the centuries. The Tower is easily accessed via Westminster Underground Station and a nominal admission charge is required to maintain the buildings standards.

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