|The towers of Westminster Abbey left of M's head, behind the houses of Parliament. A cold but sunny, winter London day.|
|Left: Temporary tiers and balconies of seating were built in for Queen Elizabeth II coronation. |
Right: Leaving Westminster Abbey as Queen. Photos from Public domain.
|This photo, of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's wedding from the Telegraph , shows the enormity of the vaulted ceilings.|
|William Wilberforce - remembered for his ferocious fight |
against the legality of human slavery.
M was a bit stressed as people stepped on Charles Dickens and Sir Issac Newton though.
Apparently one of the biggest funerals ever in the Abbey was that of Charles Dickens - the poor and under-trodden from all around the country came in their rags to leave flowers at the grave of the voice that shared their plight and developed a social consciousness in an age where poverty was still seen as a reward for lack of moral development.
I didn't realise that the first governor of NSW had been buried here. I was in the middle of teaching the Ted Hughes sophisticated fairy tale "The Ironman" so I shared this photo with my Yr 6 class to show where the Poet Laureate had been remembered. I wonder what Lewis Carroll (real name Charles Dodgson) found on the other side of this rabbit hole. The circular design of his memorial is an allusion to his most famous work. An inscription reads "Is all our life then but a dream?" This reminds me of Queen's Bohemian Rhapsody for some reason: the place of Freddy Mercury's (birth name Farroch Bulsara) remains are still a mystery, he certainly isn't cossied up with Purcell at the foot of the organ stairs or Handle, perhaps he should be! No mum, I'm not implying that 'Play the Game' or 'Someone to Love' are comparable to 'The Messiah'?!
|Edwards burial scene in the Bayeux Tapestry - the Abbey to the left has cloisters and one tower but was completely built over by Henry III as he tried to build a 'more glorious memorial to his hero - King Edward.|
|The front of the Abbey where princesses enter to be wed |
or crowned and visitors leave. The visitor entry is around
the left side. Check opening times before visiting!
The building is quite overwhelming, with chapels and gated rooms budding off the main spaces, each with plaques or statues in memorial of human names or remains. The enormous circular chapter house where the monks would carry out their job of copying tomes or recording business is beautiful but empty. It is said a door in the entry to this space is the oldest in Britain. There is a museum in one of the rooms with the coronation chair on display which proudly shows all the punishment of being the oldest English artifact in continual use. One young altar boy carved his initials and the date which he slept over in it. It has been chopped and nailed, stained and restored but will be used again when the next king is crowned.
|The Ladies Chapel built along French Gothic lines by Henry III.|
|The Quire - where the choir sit.|
|Left: Coronation chair Right: Oldest door in Britain.|
|Visitors mostly exit through the shop, right of the church exit door.|
|Great souvenir shot across Westminster square from the Abbey.|