Places of Interest in the City of London
The City of London is a smaller place inside of London itself, not much has changed on the outside of the city since the middle age time and thus full of history to enjoy. Another known name that this place is known by is ‘The Square Mile’ is it is a mile long and slightly over in a square type of shape. Today however the City of London is a major trade area, and a major finical center of sorts where people come to do tons of business while within the City of London. 320,000 people now work inside the City of London and a good 8,000 people and growing actually live within the boundaries. Not only does it have a great business central it has some wonderful things to see found below.
1. Whittington Gardens
The gardens get its name from Dick Whittington of who was once a Lord Mayor of London. Beautiful flowers, plants and trees surround the garden giving it an excellent fragrance to enjoy after a long and stressful day. As the gardens are close to the district of financial it is great place for workers, locals and tourists to come visit.
As the gardens provide a sense of peace and a place to relax, people come here around the noon hour to eat lunch with friends and co workers, not only do workers and business people come to do so but general residents who do not work, they can sit on one of the benches around in the gardens and can sit, relax and enjoy a nice time eating their meal and having conversations with friends and family.
The open air is great to calm one’s mind while sitting within the Whittington Gardens, it’s a sense of tranquility so one can regenerate and then go back to work or home life with a refreshed mind.
2. Tower of London
The Palace is the first part of the Tower of London, it had also been a fortress to help protect the Palace and keep intruders out from the inside that would wish to destroy those who resided inside, the palace had been in the year of 1066, and the Tower of London is the specific white Tower connected to it.
In the year of 1078 William the Conqueror had begun the Tower of London, it has served for many years as a residence to the royals and both a fortress and armory. The tower of London has also been an area for execution; this place is now an attraction for visitors and has historic value. The Tower of London has been here for nearly over 900 years and has much history from British and towards the roman ages.
As the Tower is an important part of history and time in City of London, it is an excellent place to view on the inside and out, thousands of people come from local areas and all around the word to visit and enjoy a great piece of history with family and friends.
3. Bank of England
In the year of 1694 the Bank of England had been found, it is central to the identity of London. It is also known as Old Lady of the Threadneedle Street, and has always been a great importance of the financial system of which was nationalized in 1946. It then eventually gained some sort of independence from the control of the government in the year of 1997. Now the bank is in charge of interest rates and settling them, a lot of work still goes on inside of the historic building to this day.
People from all over London and others that seem to be tourists come to see the bank, they often have cameras to take pictures of the historical building as it tells a story all in its own.
Inside people can ask about the history of the building and find out tourist information about the bank and learn when it was constructed and how long that the bank has been around along with how they had produced money back in the old days for them. It is an interesting thing to see if you are visiting the city of London.
4. Bridewell Theatre
Inside the City of London there are two theatres, one is Bridewell Theatre of which is used for many different plays and musicals. Many dramas happen throughout the night and during the day with something called a lunch box, this is a gather another crowd during the day so working people and people visiting the City can have something to enjoy as well.
The Bridewell theatre had once been a Victorian pool for swimming, it is not far from the tube station of St. Paul.
People from all over can come to enjoy that of the shows within the Bridewell Theatre and enjoy a variety of acts and music that fill its inside, giving the public the kind of entertainment that they seek out while visiting a specific city in a certain location.
5. The Young Lovers
The young lovers are a statue that is within Festival gardens, it is close by St. Paul’s Cathedral and close to the financial district in the central parts of the City of London. George Ehrlich had carved this beautiful statue that sits out there for everyone to stop by and enjoy the view of it.
George Ehrlich has not just this statue but other sculptures all over the world in amazing galleries, it has made Ehrlich famous for his beautiful and amazing work, the statue is supposed to hold peace and love in a city full of madness and a lot of work, it provides a nice comfortable spot where people can come, relax and enjoy the nice sight of this specific sculpture. The statue is of two people hugging as if two lovers sitting in the middle of the area were in love and watching over the things around the city.
The Young Lovers is a sculpture that anyone from any part of the world can come visit, it is great to enjoy after a good long day of work as well, this way people can get a sense of peace and simply relax looking over the sculpture by George Ehrlich.
6. Alexander Kerensky Museum
Alexander Kerensky Museum had been a Russian president at one time before the Revolution in the year of 1917. Famous politicians have brought in personal artifacts from that of which they had gathered over the years and or found, and bring them to the museum to have them on display for a certain amount of time.
At the Alexander Kerensky Museum a person can also learn more about the president Alexander Kerensky of Russia and what kind of things he did and believed in. The museum also explains of the Russian Revolution and what kind of impact it had upon Russia and the world as we know it today.
Inside of the museum there is something for everyone to browse and enjoy what is within the rooms throughout the museum; it is a great place that tells a story of history that had happened along through the many years that have passed since his time.
7. All Hallows Barking by the Tower
All hallows by the Tower, once dedicated to the woman the Virgin Mary, is an Anglican church which overlooks the Tower of London. It was first constructed in the year 675 by the Saxon Abbey at Barking and was named after the abbey for many years as the All Hallows Barking. Traces of the former Roman building which once occupied this same site can be seen in the crypt of the church to this day. Being built and expanded upon many times from the 11th to the 15th centuries, this church’s proximity to the Tower of London enabled it to be used as a temporary burial site for victims beheaded at the tower.
An explosion in 1650 nearly destroyed the church and its west tower was completely demolished in the process. It narrowly escaped disaster again during the Great Fire in London in the year of 1666. It was through the efforts of Admiral William Penn, father of William Penn who founded Pennsylvania, that the building was survived when he demolished surrounding buildings to act as firebreaks. It was during this same fire that Samuel Pepys climbed up the spire to watch its progress.
It was restored late in the 19th century, but much of the church was gutted by German bombers during the London Blitz of World War II. The damage was so extensive that the reconstruction and rededication was not completed until 1957. Despite the damage caused by the Blitz, much of the church survived the war and was systematically restored. The outer walls are from the 15th century, and a Saxon doorway dating from the 7th century still remains from what was the original building. Also found in the church are three wooden statues of saints which date from the 15th and 16th centuries, as well as a Baptismal font carved in 1682 by Grinling Gibbons. This font is regarded as one of the finest carvings found in London. It was in 1999 that the AOC Archaeology Group excavated the cemetery.
The church is also the home of the Crypt Museum, which contains portions of original Roman pavement along with many other artifacts that were discovered below the church in 1926. Exhibits in the museum feature the history of the church, the City of London, and also many Saxon and other religious artifacts. Also displayed are church registers dating as far back as the 16th century with such notable figures as the baptism of William Penn, the marriage of John Quincy Adams, and the burial of Archbishop William Laud. The alter in the crypt is of a stone from the castle of King Richard I from Palestine.
8. London City Hall
The City Hall of London, found on the south bank of the River Thames, serves as the headquarters of the Greater London Authority which includes the Mayor of London and the London Assembly. It was designed by Norman Foster and opened July of 2002, two years after the creation of the Greater London Authority on a site that formerly occupied the wharves which served the Pool of London. The building is not actually owned by the Authority, but is leased with a 25 year agreement. In spite of its name, City Hall is not located in, nor does it serve the city, as it is recognized by English law. The City of London is actually headquartered in the Guildhall with is north of the River Thames. The Authority’s former council chambers remains intact, but the building itself is unusual for official functions being that the building was converted to a luxury hotel, arcade and aquarium.
The building has an unusual design with energy efficiency in mind. It has a bulbous shape which is intended to reduce surface area. Its shape has been compared to such things as Darth Vader’s helmet, a mis-shaped egg and a motorcycle helmet. Other colorful comparisons have been made, but the current mayor Boris Johnson has referred to it more politely as the ‘The Onion’. The original concept called for something like a giant sphere that would hang over the River Thames, but it was changed for a more conventional foundation instead. Its unusual shape has no conventional front or back being that it is shaped roughly like a sphere..
A helical walk way 1640 feet (500 meters) in length ascent the full height of the building. An exhibition and meeting space called London’s Living Room can be found on top of the ten story structure, which includes an open deck sometimes open to the public to stand on and enjoy the beautiful heights and surroundings from the deck when it is open to the public population.
9. Swiss Re Building
The Swiss Re Building, is also known as Gherkin and 30 St Mary Axe, is a 40 story skyscraper measuring 591 feet (180 meters) in height found in the heart of London’s financial district. The building was constructed on the former site of the Baltic Exchange building, which was severely damaged by a bomb placed by the Provisional IRA on April 10, 1992. The site was originally intended for the Millennium Tower, but these plans were canceled for this current design which was conceived by Norman Foster with his business partner at the time, Ken Shuttleworth and Arup engineers.
After the bombing near the former Baltic Exchange building, the UK government’s statutory adviser, English Heritage and the City of London were favor of redevelopment projects restoring the building’s old facade onto the new building. It was English Heritage that discovered the damage was far more extensive than first estimated and plans for this restoration were canceled, though some of the interior and facade were salvaged in the hope of reconstructing the building in the future.
It was in 1996 that Traflagar House submitted plans for the Millennium Tower, a structure over 1266 feet (386 meters) tall which included office space, apartments, shops and gardens, but the plan was dropped after it was objected as being out of scale with the city and anticipating that the building would be so tall as to disrupt flight paths from the City and Heathrow airports. A revised plan for a lower tower was later accepted. The name gherkin dates back to 1999 and refers to the buildings unusual design and appearance. Other such names that make reference to the buildings somewhat phallic appearance include the Erotic gherkin, the Towering Innuendo, and the Crystal Phallus.
10. St Paul’s Cathedral
St Paul’s Cathedral is an Anglican cathedral and can be found on the highest point in the City of London, up on Ludgate Hill. It serves as the seat for the Bishop of London. The present building was designed by Sir Christopher Wren in the 17th century and is estimated to be the fifth building by that same name to have been built on the same site since 604 AD. Standing at 365 feet (111 meters) it was the tallest building in London from 1710 to 1962 and is still one of London’s most recognizable sights.
Among many notable services held at the cathedral, there were the funerals of Lord Nelson, the Duke of Wellington, and Sir Winston Churchill, the Jubilee celebrations of Queen Victoria, and the peace services which marked the end of both the First and Second World Wars. The Launch of the Festival of Britain and the thanks giving service of the Golden Jubilee and the 80th birthday of Queen Elizabeth II. Even though the Royal Family uses Westminster Abbey for their most important marriages, christenings and funerals, it was here at St Paul’s that the marriage of Charles, Prince of Wales, and Lady Diana Spencer was hosted. To this day St Paul’s Cathedral is an active and busy church with hourly prayer and daily services.