London Fire Monument (Don Ward)

By: Don Ward
By: Don Ward

A building dedicated to buildings lost in London. I'd never been here before, glad I went.


Take a look at this long, spiral staircase.  This is inside a remarkable monument to monumental disaster.  This is one attraction in London that I had never visited before, but I love a good climb and a good story about a really important piece of history.


This is the Monument to the Great Fire Of London.  Climb 311 steps and you get this view.  This is an area that would have been all but destroyed by the flames.

The Great Fire Of London started on September 2nd of 1666 at a bakery on Pudding Lane. It didn't stop until it had destroyed thousands of houses, left 100,000 Londoners homeless, and even burned 87 churches. The man given the task of leading the rebuilding of the city was Sir Christopher Wren. He also designed this monument, dedicated to the fire itself and the recovery of the devastated city.   It was finished in 1677.  Here's what the outside looks like. That golden orb on top is designed to represent flames.

It's on Fish Street, near the River Thames and not too far from the spot where the fire started. These days as many as 100,000 visitors climb to the top every year. There's a viewing deck 160 feet above the city.  In a city where everything is expensive, 3 pounds to climb this isn't bad! The views are worth it.

This is not one of Wren's best-known buildings. The famed architect rebuilt 51 of the churches destroyed by the Great Fire Of London.  What I really like about sweeping views from the top of the monument is that you get a really great look at the iconic dome of St. Paul's Cathedral.  Look at that!

Completed in 1710, St. Paul's is very well-known, it's considered the masterpiece...of Sir Christopher Wren.

We'll talk again soon.

Don Ward



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