Visiting the Tower in uniform

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Visiting the Tower in uniform

Post by LongGone » Wed Jun 14, 2017 8:45 pm

Can students still get an escorted tour of the Tower of London if in uniform? My mother pretty much forced me into one, probably about 1956, though I have a (possibly false) recollection that a preliminary phone call was involved.
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Re: Visiting the Tower in uniform

Post by Chris T » Thu Jun 15, 2017 5:38 am

I have no idea if such escorted tours of the Tower of London still exist for CH pupils in uniform.

My only knowledge of visits in Housey dress to the Tower is that allegedly no entry fee was required. Is this true? Was it ever true? I don’t know, for my home was not in London, so I was never able to take advantage of this privilege, if indeed it existed.
Last edited by Chris T on Sat Jun 17, 2017 1:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Visiting the Tower in uniform

Post by sejintenej » Fri Jun 16, 2017 9:36 pm

Chris T wrote:
Thu Jun 15, 2017 5:38 am
I have no idea if such escorted tours of the Tower of London still exist for CH pupils in uniform.

My only knowledge of visits in CH uniform to the Tower is that allegedly no entry fee was required. Is this true? Was it ever true? I don’t know, for my home was not in London, so I was never able to take advantage of this privilege, if indeed it existed.
It existed; someone mentioned having done it when I was at CH but no details given. Living 200 miles away I never had the chance to try it out.

Interestingly, CH is closely linked to the City of London but the Tower of London is in Tower Hamlets, not (at present) the City.
Each year the Lord Mayor and the Mayor of Tower Hamlets meet and the Lord Mayor demands that the Tower be transferred to the City. They cannot agree so they go to lunch and do agree to discuss the matter the next year.
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Re: Visiting the Tower in uniform

Post by J.R. » Sat Jun 17, 2017 12:54 pm

sejintenej wrote:
Fri Jun 16, 2017 9:36 pm
Chris T wrote:
Thu Jun 15, 2017 5:38 am
I have no idea if such escorted tours of the Tower of London still exist for CH pupils in uniform.

My only knowledge of visits in CH uniform to the Tower is that allegedly no entry fee was required. Is this true? Was it ever true? I don’t know, for my home was not in London, so I was never able to take advantage of this privilege, if indeed it existed.
It existed; someone mentioned having done it when I was at CH but no details given. Living 200 miles away I never had the chance to try it out.

Interestingly, CH is closely linked to the City of London but the Tower of London is in Tower Hamlets, not (at present) the City.
Each year the Lord Mayor and the Mayor of Tower Hamlets meet and the Lord Mayor demands that the Tower be transferred to the City. They cannot agree so they go to lunch and do agree to discuss the matter the next year.
Any excuse for a 'free lunch' !!
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Re: Visiting the Tower in uniform

Post by John Saunders » Sun Jun 18, 2017 4:49 pm

I went in Housey uniform in early fifties. No charge! JHGS

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Re: Visiting the Tower in uniform

Post by Katharine » Sun Jun 18, 2017 5:35 pm

I wonder whether they would have let us in?
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Re: Visiting the Tower in uniform

Post by postwarblue » Mon Jun 19, 2017 4:58 pm

I suspect the Tower is not part of the City and under the Lord Mayor because it was Crown property.
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Re: Visiting the Tower in uniform

Post by sejintenej » Thu Jun 22, 2017 5:40 am

postwarblue wrote:
Mon Jun 19, 2017 4:58 pm
I suspect the Tower is not part of the City and under the Lord Mayor because it was Crown property.
Surely Crown Property still is within local boroughs etc? I know that, for example, Buck House still has to get a drinks licence for each state dinner and there is a police officer detailed to present the application to the Magistates.! (I don't understand that - I don't need a licence if I have a bottle of wine here at home'with adult friends - the police officer has never queried it)
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Re: Visiting the Tower in uniform

Post by John Saunders » Wed Dec 12, 2018 1:55 pm

I Visited the Tower at least twice in Housey. No Charge. This was in the 50's.

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Re: Visiting the Tower in uniform

Post by jhopgood » Wed Dec 12, 2018 2:48 pm

Last week I met someone who is a Major in the British Army and will be in charge of the Queen's Guard from the middle of January.
I asked him to look into whether CH pupils are allowed to visit the Tower free if in uniform, and he said he would ask the Yeoman and let me know.
Unfortunately I met him over a couple of bottles of wine, as he was visiting Spain and his father, who has spent the last 45 days in intensive care, so I am sure my request will not be a priority.
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Re: Visiting the Tower in uniform

Post by Chrissie Boy » Wed Dec 12, 2018 5:12 pm

Simple enough to find out all the facts, surely? If anyone has sufficient motivation, that is.

This here's a link to the Historic Royal Palaces online enquiries form. They promise to respond within three days.

https://www.hrp.org.uk/contact-us/#gs.4kt0Q9w

Go for it.

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Re: Visiting the Tower in uniform

Post by sejintenej » Wed Dec 12, 2018 6:28 pm

postwarblue wrote:
Mon Jun 19, 2017 4:58 pm
I suspect the Tower is not part of the City and under the Lord Mayor because it was Crown property.
Just noticed this post to which I should have given a better reply. The TowerofLondon and the Liberties to the north are within the City of London.

Annually the mayor of Tower Hamlets meets the Lord Mayor to formally demand that the Tower be turned over to the London Borough of Tower Hamlets. Being unable yet again to agree the two of them adjourn for one year and go and have lunch/dinner (I cannot remember which. A City acssociation of which I was a member had a City expert as speaker at a dinner and told us that this was just one of the multiplicity of formalities the Lord Mayoy has to attend)
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Re: Visiting the Tower in uniform

Post by michael scuffil » Wed Dec 12, 2018 8:08 pm

The Tower of London is not in the City of London (as any map of the City will show you), and never has been.

It was situated within the 'Liberties of the Tower', which were neither in the City nor in the surrounding county of Middlesex (analogous to Westminster Abbey not being within the jurisdiction of the Bishop of London). The Liberties were incorporated into the Metropolitan Borough of Stepney when the London County Council was created in 1889, and formally abolished five years later. When Greater London was formed in the 1960s, Stepney became part of the London Borough of Tower Hamlets -- a revival of an archaic name for the villages surrounding the Tower (which I *believe* had certain duties to supply militia to the castle).

I judge the story of the annual meeting of the mayors to be an urban myth, as also (certainly) the story that Buck House requires a drinks licence. As HM doesn't charge state visitors for their drinks (Vodka, Mr President? That'll be 30 pounds. Credit card? That'll do nicely.), it wouldn't need one. The bars in the Palace of Westminster don't require magistrates' licences either, even though they do sell drinks.
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