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The Clink which burnt down in 1780 gave its name to mean any prison.
In the 16th and 17th centuries the area was Londons red light district and the Bishops regulated both the prostitutes and the brothels that operated there.
Neither Barry nor Pugin were to live to see the new buildings completed.
The famous tower and clock are known as Big Ben but this is in fact the name of the 16 ton bell which rings the hour.
The column stands 202ft (62m) high, the same distance as from the starting point of the fire in Pudding Lane.
It is also the tallest free-standing stone column in the world.
A 100ft (30m) high glass roof covers the former Hays Wharf where the great tea clippers once moored.
Two swans decorate the entrance marking an ancient privilege granted by Edward l V in 1473 to the Vintners Company of owning swans on the river.This obelisk was first erected in Egypt by Pharaoh Thotmes lll around 1500BC.It was presented to the British people in 1819 in recognition of Nelsons victory over the French fleet at the Battle of the Nile in 1798.This Palladian building was erected in 1786 when the river still reached its walls.It takes its name from the Duke of Somerset who started a palace on this site in 1547. This includes two of the four Inns of Court - the Middle Temple (in whose Elizabethan Hall Shakespeares Twelfth Night was performed in 1601) and the Inner Temple.