Saturday, September 6, 2014

Friday morning - Tower of London

What an awful, historically-heavy site! 

Queen's Residence at left
The Tower is actually a strategic fortress and consists of 20 towers, a chapel, Queen's Residence (guarded by Royal Police), the vault housing the Crown Jewels, residences for the Yeomen and their families, the armoury, mint, and Headquarters of the Royal Fusiliers.  A small patch of grass surrounded by these buildings has housed the scaffold and execution block for those whose executions were given privacy.
Henry VIII executed an average of five people every day of his reign, in all, over 85,000 people! (According to our guide.  I notice the number varies by authority, but is between 72,000-85,000.  Astounding.)

The residences of the Yeomen Guards






From the inside of Beauchamp Tower - and arrowslit



Traitors' Gate, St Thomas' Tower

I was really interested in this, having read many times of Anne Boleyn and Sir Thomas Moore, among others, being spirited away at night time by boat down the Thames, and secreted in the Tower via this entrance.

Our tour was led by one of the Yeomen of the Guard, (Beefeater)

The art installation of ceramic poppies, one for every soldier who died during the First World War is profound and sobering.  And awfully beautiful.







3 comments:

  1. Ohhhh wow. Didn't realise the poppies were still there. Amazing. Such a graphic representation and what an appropriate place for them.

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  2. They are adding them as they died I think? so we saw staff planting more of them in the morning, looks amazing! Not sure when it all ends but they are stunning. Off to Olympic park soon x

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  3. http://metro.co.uk/2014/08/03/tower-of-london-marks-wwi-centenary-with-dramatic-art-installation-4819866/
    Nov 11 last one will be planted x

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