Addresses don’t come much grander than 'Number One London', the popular name for Apsley House, one of the most interesting visitor attractions in London. Home to the Duke of Wellington after his victory over Napoleon at Waterloo, the interior of the house has changed very little since the days of the Iron Duke.
It boasts one of the finest art collections in London, with paintings by Velazquez and Rubens as well as a wonderful collection of silver and porcelain. Pride of place goes to a massive nude statue of Napoleon. Why not include a stroll through nearby Hyde Park, and a visit to nearby Wellington Arch for a great value family day out in London.
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Apsley House, also known as Number One, London, is the London townhouse of the Dukes of Wellington. It stands alone at Hyde Park Corner, on the south-east corner of Hyde Park, facing south towards the busy traffic roundabout in the centre of which stands the Wellington Arch. It is a Grade I listed building.It is sometimes referred to as the Wellington Museum. The house is now run by English Heritage and is open to the public as a museum and art gallery, exhibiting 83 paintings from the Spanish royal collection. The 9th Duke of Wellington retains the use of part of the buildings. It is perhaps the only preserved example of an English aristocratic town house from its period. The practice has been to maintain the rooms as far as possible in the original style and decor. It contains the 1st Duke's collection of paintings, porcelain, the silver centrepiece made for the Duke in Portugal, c. 1815, sculpture and furniture. Antonio Canova's heroic marble nude of Napoleon as Mars the Peacemaker made 1802–10, holding a gilded Nike in the palm of his right hand, and standing to the raised left hand holding a staff. It was set up for a time in the Louvre and was bought by the Government for Wellington in 1816 (according to Nikolaus Pevsner) and stands in Adam's Stairwell.
St James's Palace is the official residence of the sovereign and the most senior royal palace in the United Kingdom. Located in the City of Westminster, although no longer the principal residence of the monarch, it is the ceremonial meeting place of the Accession Council and the London residence of several members of the royal family.Built by Henry VIII on the site of a leper hospital dedicated to Saint James the Less, the palace was secondary in importance to the Palace of Whitehall for most Tudor and Stuart monarchs. The palace increased in importance during the reigns of the early Georgian monarchy, but was displaced by Buckingham Palace in the late-18th and early-19th centuries. After decades of being used increasingly for only formal occasions, the move was formalised by Queen Victoria in 1837. Today the palace houses a number of official offices, societies and collections and all ambassadors and high commissioners to the United Kingdom are still accredited to the Court of St James's.Mainly built between 1531 and 1536 in red-brick, the palace's architecture is primarily Tudor in style. A fire in 1809 destroyed parts of the structure, including the monarch's private apartments, which were never replaced. Some 17th-century interiors survive, but most were remodelled in the 19th century.
St James's PalaceDistance: 1.5 miTourist Information Marlborough Rd, St James's SW1A 1DD London, SW1A 1BS
The Queen's Chapel is a chapel in central London, England, that was designed by Inigo Jones and built between 1623 and 1625 as an external adjunct to St. James's Palace for Roman Catholic queen Henrietta Maria. It is one of the facilities of the British monarch's personal religious establishment, the Chapel Royal, and should not be confused with the 1540 building known as the Chapel Royal within the palace and just across Marlborough road.HistoryIt was built as a Roman Catholic chapel at a time when the construction of Catholic churches was prohibited in England, and was used by Charles I's Catholic queen Henrietta Maria. From the 1690s it was used by Continental Protestant courtiers. It was built as an integral part of St James's Palace, but when the adjacent private apartments burned down in 1809 they were not replaced and in 1856-57 Marlborough Road was built between the palace and the Queen's Chapel. The result is that physically the chapel now appears to be more part of the Marlborough House complex than of St James's Palace. It became a Chapel Royal again in 1938.Having been taken from the Royal Chapel of All Saints in Windsor Great Park, the body of Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother lay at the Queen's Chapel for several days during the preparations for her lying-in-state in Westminster Hall before her ceremonial funeral.
Marlborough House is a Grade I listed mansion in the City of Westminster, in The Mall, London, east of St James's Palace. It was built for Sarah Churchill, Duchess of Marlborough, the favourite and confidante of Queen Anne. For over a century it served as the London residence of the Dukes of Marlborough. It is now the headquarters of the Commonwealth Secretariat.ConstructionThe Duchess wanted her new house to be "strong, plain and convenient and good". The architect Christopher Wren and his son of the same name designed a brick building with rusticated stone quoins (cornerstones) that was completed in 1711.The house was taken up by the Crown in 1817. In the 1820s plans were drawn up to demolish Marlborough House and replace it with a terrace of similar dimensions to the two in neighbouring Carlton House Terrace, and this idea even featured on some contemporary maps, including Christopher and John Greenwood's large-scale London map of 1830, but the proposal was not implemented.
St James's Square is the only square in the exclusive St James's district of the City of Westminster. It has predominantly Georgian and Neo-Georgian architecture and a garden in the centre. For its first two hundred or so years it was one of the three or four most fashionable residential address in London. It is now home to the headquarters of a number of well-known businesses, including BP and Rio Tinto Group; to three private members' clubs, the East India Club, the Canning Club and the Naval and Military Club; to the High Commission of Cyprus; and to the London Library. Also based in the square is the premises of the think tank Chatham House. The square's main feature is an equestrian statue of William III erected in 1808.HistoryIn 1662 Charles II extended a lease over the 45 acres of Pall Mall (St James's) Field held by Henry Jermyn, 1st Earl of St Albans to 1720 and soon afterwards the earl began to lay out the property for development. The earl petitioned the king that the class of occupants they both hoped to attract to the new district would not take houses without the prospect of eventually acquiring them outright, and in 1665 the king granted the freehold of the site of St. James's Square and some closely adjacent parts of the field to the earl's trustees. The location was convenient for the royal palaces of Whitehall and St James. The houses on the east, north and west sides of the square were soon developed, each of them being constructed separately as was usual at that time.
The Animals in War Memorial is a war memorial in Hyde Park, London. It is located on Park Lane, at the junction with Upper Brook Street, on the eastern edge of the park.The memorial was designed by English sculptor David Backhouse to commemorate the countless animals that have served and died under British military command throughout history. It was unveiled in November 2004 by Princess Anne, the Princess Royal.HistoryThe memorial was inspired by Jilly Cooper's book Animals in War, and was made possible by a specially created fund of £1.4 million from public donations of which Cooper was a co-trustee. The memorial consists of a 55 ft by 58 ft (16.8 m by 17.7 m) curved Portland stone wall: the symbolic arena of war, emblazoned with images of various struggling animals, along with two heavily-laden bronze mules progressing up the stairs of the monument, and a bronze horse and bronze dog beyond it looking into the distance.The Animals in War Memorial was officially opened on 24 November 2004 by Anne, Princess Royal.On May 27 2013, it was one of two London war memorials vandalised on the same night. The word 'Islam' was spray-painted on it causing £2,766 in damage and the nearby RAF Bomber Command Memorial causing £6,500 in damage. A 31 year old London man later admitted to vandalising the memorials. The man was charged for a total of 94 vandalism and destruction of property offences carried out over several weeks against homes, cars, memorials and a church causing a total of £56,909 in damage.
The Victoria was built at the same time as Paddington Station (Around 1838). It was always slightly grander than the surrounding pubs and was used by many of the butlers that served in the large houses in the area. Legend has it that Queen Victoria stopped off on her way to Paddington Station, and after that the pub was named in her honour and appointed in it's rather grand style.
Charles Dickens spent time writing "Our Mutual Friend" in the pub, and it also appears in two clips from British Pathe news. After the Second World War it was taken over by some theatrical types that converted the upstairs rooms as you see today.
In days gone by there have been many celebrities who have either been regulars, or who have just popped in for a drink. Most recently, we have had guests such as Liam Gallagher and his family, Claudio Ranieri, Ronnie Wood, and Damien Hirst. Keira Knightley used to be a regular, and you’d recognise plenty of other faces enjoying a discreet drink.
34 Montagu Square is the address of a London ground floor and basement flat once leased by Beatles member Ringo Starr during the mid-1960s. Its location is 1.3 miles (2.09 km) from the Abbey Road Studios, where The Beatles recorded. Many well-known people have lived at the address, including a British Member of Parliament, Richard-Hanbury Gurney, and the daughter of the Marquess of Sligo, Lady Emily Charlotte Browne. The square was named after Elizabeth Montagu, who was highly regarded by London society in the late 18th century.Paul McCartney recorded demo songs there, such as "I'm Looking Through You", and worked on various compositions, including "Eleanor Rigby". With the help of Ian Sommerville he converted the flat to a studio for Apple Corps' avant-garde Zapple label, recording William S. Burroughs for spoken-word Zapple albums. Jimi Hendrix and his manager, Chas Chandler, later lived there with their girlfriends. Whilst living there, Hendrix composed "The Wind Cries Mary".For three months, John Lennon and Yoko Ono rented the flat, taking a photograph that would become the cover of their Two Virgins album. After the police raided the flat looking for drugs, the landlord of the property sought an injunction against Starr to prevent it from being used for anything untoward or illegal. Starr sold the lease in February 1969. In 2010, Ono unveiled a blue marker plaque at the site, making it an English Heritage "building of historical interest".
The BT Tower is a communications tower located in Fitzrovia, London, owned by BT Group. It has been previously known as the GPO Tower, the Post Office Tower and the Telecom Tower. The main structure is 177m high, with a further section of aerial rigging bringing the total height to 191m. It should not be confused with the BT Centre (the global headquarters of BT). Its Post Office code was YTOW.Upon completion it overtook the Millbank Tower to become the tallest building in both London and the United Kingdom, titles it held until 1980, when it in turn was overtaken by the NatWest Tower.History20th centuryThe tower was commissioned by the General Post Office (GPO). Its primary purpose was to support the microwave aerials then used to carry telecommunications traffic from London to the rest of the country, as part of Britain's microwave network.It replaced a much shorter steel lattice tower which had been built on the roof of the neighbouring Museum telephone exchange in the late 1940s to provide a television link between London and Birmingham. The taller structure was required to protect the radio links' "line of sight" against some of the tall buildings in London then in the planning stage. These links were routed via other GPO microwave stations at Harrow Weald, Bagshot, Kelvedon Hatch and Fairseat, and to places like the London Air Traffic Control Centre at West Drayton.
St George's Cathedral is an Antiochian Orthodox church in Albany Street, St Pancras, in the London Borough of Camden. Built to the designs of James Pennethorne, it was consecrated as an Anglican place of worship called Christ Church in 1837. It became an Orthodox cathedral in 1989.DescriptionThe building, designed by James Pennethorne, stands on the corner of Redhill Street (formerly Edward Street) and Albany Street. It is not strictly orientated, its ceremonial east end, with the altar, facing slightly west of north. It is rectangular in plan, and built of brick with stucco and stone dressings, its four corners emphasised by wide tower-like features, projecting slightly beyond the main lines of the walls. The architecture is broadly classical in style. A deep stucco entablature runs around the whole building, with a simple brick parapet above it. The windows are round-headed. There is a tower above the entrance, topped by an octagonal spire. The steeple is unusually small in comparison with the main body of the church.HistoryAnglican churchIt was built as an Anglican church to serve the largely working class district of Cumberland Market. Consecrated on 13 July 1837, it established itself firmly within the high church Oxford Movement. Its first incumbent, William Dodsworth, previously of the Margaret Street Chapel, resigned on his conversion to Roman Catholicism.
Landmark Near Madame Tussauds London
Oxford Street Distance: 0.6 miTourist Information City of Westminster, West End London, United Kingdom W1K 1NA
Oxford Street is a major road in the City of Westminster in the West End of London. It is Europe's busiest shopping street, with around half a million daily visitors, and as of 2012 had approximately 300 shops. It is designated as part of the A40, a major road between London and Fishguard, though it is not signed as such, and traffic is regularly restricted to buses and taxis.The road was originally a Roman road, part of the Via Trinobantina between Essex and Hampshire via London. It was known as Tyburn Road through the Middle Ages and was once notorious as a street where prisoners from Newgate Prison would be transported towards a public hanging. It became known as Oxford Road and then Oxford Street in the 18th century, and began to change character from a residential street to commercial and retail purposes by the late 19th century, also attracting street traders, confidence tricksters and prostitution. The first department stores in Britain opened on Oxford Street in the early 20th century, including Selfridges, John Lewis and HMV. Unlike nearby shopping streets such as Bond Street, it has retained an element of downmarket street trading alongside more prestigious retail stores. The street suffered heavy bombing during World War II, and several longstanding stores including John Lewis were completely destroyed and rebuilt from scratch.
The Chiltern Firehouse is a restaurant and hotel located at 1 Chiltern Street, Marylebone, London, England occupying the Grade II listed building of the former Marylebone Fire Station, also known as Manchester Square Fire Station. It is owned by André Balazs, a hotel chain owner, who also owns the Chateau Marmont Hotel in Los Angeles, California and The Mercer Hotel in New York City. The head chef is Nuno Mendes.Manchester Square Fire StationThe Manchester Square Fire Station was built in 1889, by the London County Council Architect's Department, "in the Vulliamy manner". "Red brick with stone dressings; tiled roof. Free Tudor-Gothic style". It initially served as a fire station, and was one of the first fire stations in London. The original architect was Robert Pearsall. Originally known as Manchester Square Fire Station (Manchester Square is nearby), it was decommissioned in June 2005 by the London Fire and Emergency Planning Authority. For some years subsequently, it had been in occasional use as an exhibition space for local artists, as there was a long and complex planning process to convert it to a luxury hotel and restaurant. David Archer of Archer Humphryes Architects acted as lead architect for the project.
The Embassy of Sweden in London is the diplomatic mission of Sweden in the United Kingdom. It is located by Montagu Square in Marylebone, just down the road from the embassy of Switzerland, and has housed the Swedish embassy since 1983.The Swedish ambassador's residence is located is a separate building at 27 Portland Place. Sweden also maintains a Trade Council at 259-269 Old Marylebone Road, Marylebone.
The Kenya High Commission in London was established in 1963 to pursue Kenya’s national interest in the United Kingdom, the International Maritime Organization and the commonwealth. The Mission has the mandate to forge closer relations between the people of Kenya and the people of United Kingdom in pursuit of deeper bilateral and multilateral cooperation in trade and investments, culture, science and technology as well as other fields for mutual benefit.The High Commission is housed in one of a group of Grade II* listed buildings in Portland Place.
The Embassy of Poland in London (Ambasada Rzeczypospolitej Polskiej w Londynie) is the diplomatic mission of Poland in the United Kingdom. It is located on Portland Place next to the High Commission of Kenya building. It forms part of a group of Grade II* listed buildings in Portland Place.History Involving the Embassy of Poland in London, Main Chancery BuildingShortly after regaining independence in 1918, there seemed to be a general feeling of ambivalence towards Britain demonstrated by most Polish statesmen, as if they were neglecting British relations, who played a major role in helping to re-establish the post-World War I - Second Polish Republic. However, with newly-restored independence, the country's government instead concentrated on shoring up good relations with traditional ally France, and immediate neighbour Germany.As a result of this focus, it was not until 1929 that the first Polish legation was sent to establish a permanent embassy in London. The establishment of this Polish embassy building in London would go on to play one of the most important roles of Poland's history.By the late 1930s when world war was once again becoming inevitable, the government of the Second Polish Republic requested the necessary military aid from the British government; as Poland was still rebuilding civilian infrastructure from the aftermath of World War I. The government also signed a three-way mutual defence pact with the United Kingdom and France with the original intent being to make sure an independent and sovereign, democratic Poland would never again have to stand alone against a German invasion. Thus, much of the bureaucracy surrounding these pre-war pacts found itself centred in the halls and corridors of number 47, Portland Place.
Marylebone Gardens Distance: 0.2 miTourist Information 35 Marylebone High Street London, United Kingdom w1u 4qa
Marylebone or Marybone Gardens was a London pleasure garden sited in the grounds of the old manor house of Marylebone and frequented from the mid-17th century, when Marylebone was a village separated from London by fields and market gardens, to the third quarter of the 18th century.Early historyIt was situated in the area which is now between Marylebone Road, Marylebone High Street, Weymouth Street, and Harley Street; its site was developed as Beaumont Street and part of Devonshire Street.Originally consisting of two bowling greens adjoining the Rose of Normandy tavern on the east side of Marylebone High Street, its size was increased to about eight acres by acquisition of land from Marylebone Manor House, which had been converted into a hunting lodge by Henry VIII and was later used as a boarding school, eventually being demolished in 1791. The Marylebone Gardens, surrounded by a high brick wall and set about with fruit trees, had a carriage entrance in the High Street of Marylebone village and another entrance from the fields at the back. Its center was an open oval bowling green encompassed by a wide gravelled walk and many smaller walks and greens surrounded by clipped quickset hedges, "kept in good order, and indented like town walls."
221B Baker Street is the London address of the fictional detective Sherlock Holmes, created by author Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. In the United Kingdom, postal addresses with a number followed by a letter may indicate a separate address within a larger, often residential building. Baker Street in Holmes' time was a high-class residential district, and Holmes' apartment was probably part of a Georgian terrace.At the time the Holmes stories were published, addresses in Baker Street did not go as high as 221. Baker Street was later extended, and in 1932 the Abbey National Building Society moved into premises at 219–229 Baker Street. For many years, Abbey National employed a full-time secretary to answer mail addressed to Sherlock Holmes. In 1990, a blue plaque signifying 221B Baker Street was installed at the Sherlock Holmes Museum, situated elsewhere on the same block, and there followed a 15-year dispute between Abbey National and the Holmes Museum for the right to receive mail addressed to 221B Baker Street. Since the closure of Abbey House in 2005, ownership of the address by the Holmes Museum has not been challenged, despite its location between 237 and 241 Baker Street.Conan Doyle's intentionsWe met next day as he had arranged, and inspected the rooms at No. 221B, Baker Street, of which he had spoken at our meeting. They consisted of a couple of comfortable bed-rooms and a single large airy sitting-room, cheerfully furnished, and illuminated by two broad windows.(Arthur Conan Doyle, A Study in Scarlet, 1887)