Westminster Abbey is one of the most captivating and extraordinary building in the world. The Abbey is an integral part of British heritage, with a long history of services and ceremonies for Kings, Queens and famous figures around the country. Over one million people visit the Abbey, to wonder at this marvellous feat of architecture. A predominantly gothic structure, Westminster Abbey has been standing for over 700 years, gaining cathedral status in around 1540.
Highlights of the Abbey include the high altar, also known as the sacrarium, which features a stunning marble floor,a replica of a floor in a church in Rome that has been down since 1268. The altar is just in front of the area where Edward the Confessor’s shrine can be found, another pilgrimage for history enthusiasts. The Lady Chapel, also known as Henry VII Chapel, features a fabulous gothic style ceiling, that is arguably one of the best in the world. Modern additions include the organ, built by Harrison & Harrison in 1937, then with four manuals and 84 speaking stops, and was used for the first time at the coronation of King George VI.
Westminster Abbey is directly answerable to sovereign, having been closely related for many years and being used as a place for coronation since William the Conqueror in 1066. Having seen many coronations in its history, the Abbey is synonymous with regality and a stop of point for those visiting London on a Royal tour. The Abbey has also hosted many Royal weddings over the years, including those of the now Queen of England, Elizabeth and most recently her Grandson, the Duke of Cambridge. As well as marriage celebrations, the Abbey has also held funerals for members of the Royal family and many famous people throughout history. Geoffrey Chaucer was one of the first literary and historical figures to be buried in the Abbey and was subsequently surrounded by other writers and poets, which is now known as poets corner.
Westminster Abbey is at the heart of English history, with something for every culture and religion to relate to. A stunning building that will make all visitors stand in awe, definitely a must see on your next visit to London.