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  • Writer's picturePARLIAMENT NEWS

Parliament celebrates 150 years of the Palace of Westminster

Updated: Dec 7, 2020

The Palace of Westminster at the beginning of November 2020 will be celebrating its 150th birthday, after it was rebuilt by Charles Barry and Augustus Pugin following a massive fire.

Home to the House of Commons and House of Lords, three iconic building is a living, breathing symbol of democracy in the UK.

To mark this significant milestone, The Parliamentary Society for Arts Fashion and Sports leading by their chairlady Rebeca Riofrio will be producing a video commemorating history, art and values around the Palace of Westminster 150 years.

The programme on this video will include history fashion and social media activities which draw on fundamental societal and legislative changes from the past 150 years.

Pivotal moments include some women and all men winning the right to vote in 1918, the decriminalisation of homosexual acts in England and Wales in 1967, and the instigation of anti-discrimination laws in 1968. Each of these vital pieces of legislation was enacted inside the Palace of Westminster.

Sir Lindsay Hoyle, Speaker of the House of Commons, said: “Not only is the Palace of Westminster one of the best-known landmarks in the world, it is a living building – a workplace for MPs, peers and staff, as well as a tourist attraction and UNESCO World Heritage Site.

“It has survived whatever nature and the ravages of time could throw at it over the last 150 years – and has been at the centre of societal change – so we look forward to celebrating this important milestone with a range of activities to engage people from across the world.”

The historic building was designed by Charles Barry and Augustus Pugin in the 1830s. Completed in 1870, its ground-breaking design included features such as a pioneering air cooling system and the invention of an ingenious clock mechanism (the three-legged escapement mechanism) to ensure the accuracy of the Great Clock, housed within the Elizabeth Tower (also known as Big Ben).

A new virtual tour of the building will be launched to allow members of the public to explore the most intriguing corners of this historic site. (click here to find out more

With a floor area of 112,476 square metres spread across four floors, at ground floor level it roughly takes up the equivalent of 112 tennis courts.

The Palace contains 1,100 rooms, 100 staircases and 4.8 kilometres of passageways which runs its 300 metres in length and encircles two rows of courtyards.

The planned activities and resources include a design competition for young artists aged six to 15, public talks about the building and its collections, online guided tours of the Palace of Westminster and an online art gallery.#palaceofwestminster #150parliament


sources : Toby Porter at Events London News Online


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