Banqueting House or Whitehall Palace – Famous as the site of the execution of King Charles I
Banqueting House is one of the popular London attractions. This Palace has a long Monarch history. It covered 23 acres and was the largest royal palace in Europe during King Henry VIII. Today it is preserved, due to its Grade I Listed status.
In 14th Century the site of Banqueting House originally owned by the Archbishops of York. It was called York Place conveniently close to the Westminster Palace (at present Parliament House). In 1514 Thomas Wolsey, Archbishop of York extended York Palace. The King Henry VIII took over this Palace when the relationship between him and Archbishop Wolsey broken down. He renamed it as Whitehall Palace.
In 1581, Queen Elizabeth I erected a large banqueting house on temporary basis connected with her marriage negotiations with the Duke of Alençon. In 1606 James I of England and VI of Scotland (1602-25) decided to replace it with a permanent building. Built of brick and stone and completed in 1609, the new banqueting house had a large hall above a ground floor basement.
The Banqueting House is probably most famous as the site of the execution of King Charles I. In 1649, after years of struggle between the authority of Parliament and the power of the King, which culminated in the Civil War (1642-9), Charles I was found guilty of treason and sentenced to death. His last words were ‘I go from a corruptible to an incorruptible Crown, where no disturbance can be.
Due to government events and functions this house can’t be kept open to the public. Visit the website for Tickets and update information.