54 Amazing Facts About London That Will Blow Your Mind
1. The Houses of Parliament are officially known as the Palace of Westminster and it is the largest palace in the country.
2. The Palace of Westminster has eight bars (where prices are kept cheap, thanks to the taxpayer), six restaurants, 1,000 rooms, 100 staircases, 11 courtyards, a hair salon, and rifle-shooting range.
3. It is illegal to die in the Palace of Westminster.
4. Many playwrights and poets are buried at Westminster Abbey. The tomb of Elizabethan poet Edmund Spenser is there and, according to historian Edward Camden, contains unpublished works by his admirers — possibly including Shakespeare — who threw poems into his grave as a tribute.
5. Big Ben is the bell, not the clock tower. Its chime is in the key of E.
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6. Cock Lane, near Holborn Viaduct, didn’t get its name due to any association with poultry, but because it was the only street to be licensed for prostitution in medieval times.
7. Unusual street names in London include Ha Ha Road in Greenwich, Hooker’s Road in Walthamstow, Quaggy Walk in Blackheath, and Cyclops Mews and Uamvar Street in Limehouse.
8. The Beatles played their last gig on the roof of Apple Corps at 3 Saville Row. It’s now an Abercrombie & Fitch store.
9. Jimi Hendrix lived at 23 Brook Street, which has been used as offices but is now being converted into a museum.
10. Two doors down at 25 Brook Street is where the composer Handel lived from 1723 to his death in 1759, and that flat has already been turned into a museum.
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