Tower of London with Don Brown

Tower of London with Don Brown


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Can't make this time? A video recording will be sent to all participants after the seminar.

Over the centuries, London’s Tower has played many roles.  It has been a royal palace, an impregnable fortress, a prison for monarchs’ enemies, a site of executions (including those of three queens of England), an armory, the Royal Mint, and even a zoo. Today it is home to the Beefeaters (the Queen’s Yeoman Warders who have been guarding the Tower since the 1400s), the Tower Ravens, and the Crown Jewels, including the Coronation Crown and the Koh-i-Noor diamond.

Together we will learn about the site’s 900-year history–from its construction by William of Normandy as he consolidated his conquest of the Anglo-Saxon kingdom of England and its expansion by successive kings through the middle ages. By 1300 it was the strongest castle in the kingdom and a luxurious royal residence. We’ll talk about the significant events, such as the Wars of the Roses and the Reformation of Henry VIII, that made the Tower notorious as a prison for the king’s opponents and gave it a reputation for bloody punishment.

Our timeline will take in the various waves of building, the threats it endured – from the Peasants’ Revolt of 1381 to the Blitz of 1940 – the nobles who were imprisoned (some of whom escaped; many of whom perished), the murders of kings that took place within the walls, and the ceremonies and the events that added color and pageantry (some of which persist to this day). And bringing the tale right up to date, we will see how the Tower has adapted to the 21st century, meet the Beefeaters and the ravens, and marvel at the wealth and beauty of the Crown Jewels.

Whether you’re planning on visiting the Tower of London on your next trip to the UK,  want to remind yourself of a previous visit, or want to become better acquainted with one of the most historic spots in Europe, our interactive seminar will provide a better understanding of the building and its historical context.

Eager to learn more about London virtually? Click here!
Interested in touring London with Context Travel experts in-person? Click here!

Don Brown is a London Blue Badge Guide, the Director of the London Society and a graduate of Oxford University. He previously worked in publishing, for publications as diverse as History Today, The Spectator and The Guardian. His interests and specialisms encompass history - from the Romans to the present day, politics, WW2, and ‘60s and ‘70s popular music, and as director of the London Society he has a professional interest in architecture (contemporary and historical), planning and urbanism.

This conversation is suitable for all ages.

90 minutes, including a 30 minute Q&A.

Customer Reviews

Based on 5 reviews
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(5)
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S
S. (Minneapolis, US)
Excellent Program

Such great photos and information about the history and current uses of the Tower plus beautiful drawings showing the building and rebuilding over the years.

C
C.F. (Santa Monica, US)
Great fun and intrigue!

This tour was quite fun. Not only is the Tower of London an immensely interesting place, but Mr. Brown’s enthusiasm and sense of perspective made it that much more fun and interesting.

k
k.d. (Sebastopol, US)
Tower of London

Excellent lecture on the Tower. Very much enjoyed the information given by Mr. Brown.
Thank you!

J
J.A. (Bend, US)

Guest did not leave comment

L
L.H. (Lafayette, US)
Great presentation!

Excellent review of the history behind the Tower of London. Great visuals, engaging material, top notch all around! Don is an excellent presenter.

Customer Reviews

Based on 5 reviews
100%
(5)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
S
S. (Minneapolis, US)
Excellent Program

Such great photos and information about the history and current uses of the Tower plus beautiful drawings showing the building and rebuilding over the years.

C
C.F. (Santa Monica, US)
Great fun and intrigue!

This tour was quite fun. Not only is the Tower of London an immensely interesting place, but Mr. Brown’s enthusiasm and sense of perspective made it that much more fun and interesting.

k
k.d. (Sebastopol, US)
Tower of London

Excellent lecture on the Tower. Very much enjoyed the information given by Mr. Brown.
Thank you!

J
J.A. (Bend, US)

Guest did not leave comment

L
L.H. (Lafayette, US)
Great presentation!

Excellent review of the history behind the Tower of London. Great visuals, engaging material, top notch all around! Don is an excellent presenter.