Colin Crosby Heritage Tours

Marble Arch (London)

Marble Arch is a famous location in London.

It is now situated on a large traffic island, at the West end of Oxford Street and the North end of Park Lane, just outside Hyde Park.

The arch was designed by John Nash in 1828, and modelled on the Arch of Constantine in Rome. It was designed as the entrance to Buckingham Palace.

In 1851, when Queen Victoria had the palace enlarged, it was moved to its present position.

Today, only senior members of the Royal Family and the Royal Horse Artillery are allowed to pass through the arch.

Originally, there was to be a statue of Britannia on top of Marble Arch, but George IV commisissioned an equestrian statue of himself to replace it. He died before it was completed, however, and it was decided to site the statue in Trafalgar Square.

The Marble Arch site is where the Tyburn Tree formerly stood. This was London's main place of execution by hanging, from the mediaeval period until 1783. The executions would always draw large crowds.

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