Park Lane: Arch Adventures

Strolling northbound on Park Lane, at the crossroads of Oxford Street and Edgeware Road, you must stop and take in the landmark that is the Marble Arch, located opposite of Speakers Corner and within virtual walking distance of any Park Lane hotel.
Although it has become a popular hub for sightseers and area residents to frequent, the Marble Arch, like many other London monuments, is not without its own bit of intriguing history. John Nash designed the arch in the late 1820s as a gateway to fortify the east end of Buckingham Palace, whose inner courtyard was previously exposed before its erection.
In 1855, 27 years after its construction, the arch was moved to its present location while workers revamped the eastern façade of the palace.
Also fascinating is that the diminutive rooms found inside the Marble Arch were used for a police station up until 1950.
The free standing structure, while maintaining a prominent level of historical significance, is also incredibly relevant in a new-age sense, as well.
With the heavy amount of foot traffic that results as a byproduct of the arch’s location amid such a packed and buzzing intersection, locals will often take to their literal soapbox, standing on plastic milk cartons and delivering addresses to any innocent bystander willing to lend an ear.
(For your trip to the Marble Arch, this experience is as optional as you make it.)
However, these orators, much like many others in the London area, comprehend that the Marble Arch, as well as Speakers Corner across from it represent a meaningful piece of British history as well as a popular scene to simply stop and take a gander—especially given its proximity to several Park Lane hotels.
At the Marble Arch a truly serene and stoic sight is complemented perfectly by the controlled flurry of the surrounding area and allows one to see history stand out—even in these modern times.

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April 12, 2011 | Author: | Posted in Destination Tips

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