Russel Square... a lovely park on the way from hotel to our day's events.
Ben sees flowers like Mama Nell's!
Ready to ride the Tube... this time from Holborn to Bank on the Central Line.
Mr. P carrying our invaluable Rick Steves' London Guide on the Central Line toward Bank.
And now the transfer to District to move along to the Tower Hill station.
Out of Tower Hill station to visit the Tower of London!
Originally setup to allow Edward II easy access to his home in St Thomas Tower, it became Traitors' Gate when so many were brought here as prisoners in the 16th and 17th centuries.
Ben and the White Tower. Originally built by William I, The Conqueror, between 1078 and 1087.
The White Tower with Christopher Wren windows.
Past the White Tower is the Waterloo Barracks build by the Duke of Wellington while he was Constable of the Tower. This is where the Crown Jewels are kept.
Studying up on the sites, Mr. P is reading to us about Her Majesty's Royal Palace and Fortress.
This windvane indicates with the crown and sheild that the White Tower still holds formal designation as a Royal Palace even though it has been hundreds of years since the Royal Family lived in the Tower.
Mr. P and Ben around the towers of the White Tower.
The White Tower from the south.
Taking the Wall Walk through several of the outer towers.
The Tower Ravens are one of the older superstitions. If they leave, England is doomed, so they clip their wings. Always good to play with loaded dice.
We've been to the gift store. The only sort of torture still tolerated at The Tower.
Ben poses with the permanent soldiers defending the castle.
Walking the Wall with Mr. P.
Ben tries on a helmet to defend the Tower!
Ben is cranking the Crossbow
Serious stuff here. This is the location where a few special guests were relieved of their heads. The short list includes such luminaries as Queen Anne Bolyne, Queen Catherine Howard and Lady Jane Gray.
This has been a fun day, and we haven't even had the tour by the Yeoman Warders (Beefeaters). It turns out that no one knows with certainty the origin of the term Beefeaters, although they do know the Yeoman Warders had it before the gin.
Our Yeoman Warder telling stories about the Tower. All warders are retired from the British Armed Forces and must be former senior non-commissioned officers with at least 22 years of service. They must also hold the Long Service and Good Conduct medal.
Our Yeoman Warder took a particular interest in the young prince. He pointed out that young Ben was the right age for the Princes of the Tower.
Ben in front of the Tower Chapel, or more formally the Chapel Royal of St. Peter ad Vincula. The bones of the executed are buried here. This iteration was constructed for Henry VIII in 1520.
Mr. P and Ben having late lunch at a pub.
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