Trafalgar Square

Trafalgar Square (/trəˈfælɡər/ trə-FAL-gər) is a public square in the City of Westminster, Central London, built around the area formerly known as Charing Cross. Its name commemorates the Battle of Trafalgar, a British naval victory in the Napoleonic Wars with France and Spain that took place on 21 October 1805 off the coast of Cape Trafalgar.

The site of Trafalgar Square had been a significant landmark since the 13th century and originally contained the King's Mews. After George IV moved the mews to Buckingham Palace, the area was redeveloped by John Nash, but progress was slow after his death, and the square did not open until 1844. The 169-foot (52 m) Nelson's Column at its centre is guarded by four lion statues. A number of commemorative statues and sculptures occupy the square, but the Fourth Plinth, left empty since 1840, has been host to contemporary art since 1999.

The square has been used for community gatherings and political demonstrations, including Bloody Sunday in 1887, the culmination of the first Aldermaston March, anti-war protests, and campaigns against climate change. A Christmas tree has been donated to the square by Norway since 1947 and is erected for twelve days before and after Christmas Day. The square is a centre of annual celebrations on New Year's Eve. It was well known for its feral pigeons until their removals in the early 21st century.

Trafalgar Square
Trafalgar Square, London 2 - Jun 2009
View of the square in 2009
Trafalgar Square is located in City of Westminster
Trafalgar Square
Location within Central London
Former name(s)Charing Cross
NamesakeBattle of Trafalgar
Maintained byGreater London Authority
LocationCity of Westminster, London, England
Postal codeWC2
Coordinates51°30′29″N 00°07′41″W / 51.50806°N 0.12806°WCoordinates: 51°30′29″N 00°07′41″W / 51.50806°N 0.12806°W
NorthCharing Cross Road
EastThe Strand
SouthNorthumberland Avenue
WestThe Mall
Completionc. 1840
DesignerSir Charles Barry


The name "Trafalgar" is a Spanish word of Arabic origin, derived from either Taraf al-Ghar (طرف الغار 'cape of the cave/laurel')[1][2][3] or Taraf al-Gharb (طرف الغرب 'cape of the west').[4][3]


Trafalgar Square is owned by the Queen in Right of the Crown[a] and managed by the Greater London Authority, while Westminster City Council owns the roads around the square, including the pedestrianised area of the North Terrace.[6] The square contains a large central area with roadways on three sides and a terrace to the north, in front of the National Gallery. The roads around the square form part of the A4, a major road running west of the City of London.[7] The square was formerly surrounded by a one-way traffic system, but works completed in 2003 reduced the width of the roads and closed the northern side to traffic.[8]

Nelson's Column is in the centre of the square, flanked by fountains designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens between 1937 and 1939[9] (replacements for two of Peterhead granite, now in Canada) and guarded by four monumental bronze lions sculpted by Sir Edwin Landseer.[10] At the top of the column is a statue of Horatio Nelson, who commanded the British Navy at the Battle of Trafalgar.

Surrounding the square are the National Gallery on the north side and St Martin-in-the-Fields Church to the east.[10] Also on the east is South Africa House, and facing it across the square is Canada House. To the south west is The Mall, which leads towards Buckingham Palace via Admiralty Arch, while Whitehall is to the south and the Strand to the east. Charing Cross Road passes between the National Gallery and the church.[7]

London Underground's Charing Cross station on the Northern and Bakerloo lines has an exit in the square. The lines had separate stations, of which the Bakerloo line one was called Trafalgar Square until they were linked and renamed in 1979 as part of the construction of the Jubilee line,[11] which was rerouted to Westminster in 1999.[12] Other nearby tube stations are Embankment connecting the District, Circle, Northern and Bakerloo lines, and Leicester Square on the Northern and Piccadilly lines.[13]

London bus routes 3, 6, 9, 11, 12, 13, 15, 23, 24, 29, 53, 87, 88, 91, 139, 159, 176, 453 pass through Trafalgar Square.[14]

A point in Trafalgar Square is regarded as the official centre of London in legislation and when measuring distances from the capital.[15]

Trafalgar Square, 1908
Trafalgar Square, 1908
A 360-degree view of Trafalgar Square in 2009
A 360-degree view of Trafalgar Square in 2009


Trafalgar Square by James Pollard
A painting by James Pollard showing the square before the erection of Nelson's Column

Building work on the south side of the square in the late 1950s revealed deposits from the last interglacial. Among the findings were the remains of cave lion, rhinoceros, straight-tusked elephant and hippopotamus.[16][17][18]

The site of Trafalgar Square has been a significant location since the 13th century. During Edward I's reign, the area was the site of the King's Mews, running north from the original Charing Cross, where the Strand from the City met Whitehall coming north from Westminster.[19] From the reign of Richard II to that of Henry VII, the mews was at the western end of the Strand. The name "Royal Mews" comes from the practice of keeping hawks here for moulting; "mew" is an old word for this. After a fire in 1534, the mews were rebuilt as stables, and remained here until George IV moved them to Buckingham Palace.[20]

Clearance and development

After 1732, the King's Mews were divided into the Great Mews and the smaller Green Mews to the north by the Crown Stables, a large block, built to the designs of William Kent. Its site is occupied by the National Gallery.[21]

In 1826 the Commissioners of H.M. Woods, Forests and Land Revenues instructed John Nash to draw up plans for clearing a large area south of Kent's stable block, and as far east as St Martin's Lane. His plans left open the whole area of what became Trafalgar Square, except for a block in the centre, which he reserved for a new building for the Royal Academy.[22] The plans included the demolition and redevelopment of buildings between St Martin's Lane and the Strand and the construction of a road (now called Duncannon Street) across the churchyard of St Martin-in-the-Fields.[23] The Charing Cross Act was passed in 1826 and clearance started soon after.[22] Nash died soon after construction started, impeding its progress. The square was to be named for William IV commemorating his ascent to the throne in 1830.[24] Around 1835, it was decided that the square would be named after the Battle of Trafalgar as suggested by architect George Ledwell Taylor, commemorating Nelson's victory over the French and Spanish in 1805 during the Napoleonic Wars.[19][25]

Trafalgar Square 1890 - ten remaining frames by Wordsworth Donisthorpe
Ten frames of Trafalgar Square shot by Wordsworth Donisthorpe in 1890

After the clearance, development progressed slowly. The National Gallery was built on the north side between 1832 and 1838 to a design by William Wilkins,[22] and in 1837 the Treasury approved Wilkins' plan for the laying out of the square, but it was not put into effect.[26] In April 1840, following Wilkins' death, new plans by Charles Barry were accepted, and construction started within weeks.[22][27] For Barry, as for Wilkins, a major consideration was increasing the visual impact of the National Gallery, which had been widely criticised for its lack of grandeur. He dealt with the complex sloping site by excavating the main area to the level of the footway between Cockspur Street and the Strand,[28] and constructing a 15-foot (4.6 m) high balustraded terrace with a roadway on the north side, and steps at each end leading to the main level.[27] Wilkins had proposed a similar solution with a central flight of steps.[26] Plinths were provided for sculpture and pedestals for lighting. All the stonework was of Aberdeen granite.[27] In 1841 it was decided that two fountains should be included in the layout.[29] The estimated budget, excluding paving and sculptures, was £11,000.[27] The earth removed was used to level Green Park.[28] The square was originally surfaced with tarmacadam, which was replaced with stone in the 1920s.[30]

Trafalgar Square was opened to the public on 1 May 1844.[31]

Nelson's Column

The lions at Nelson's Column were not finished until nearly 30 years after the square opened.

Nelson's Column was planned independently of Barry's work. In 1838 a Nelson Memorial Committee had approached the government proposing that a monument to the victor of Trafalgar, funded by public subscription, should be erected in the square. A competition was held and won by the architect William Railton, who proposed a 218-foot-3-inch (66.52 m) Corinthinan column topped by a statue of Nelson and guarded by four sculpted lions. The design was approved, but received widespread objections from the public. Construction went ahead beginning in 1840 but with the height reduced to 145 feet 3 inches (44.27 m).[32] The column was completed and the statue raised in November 1843.[33]

The last of the bronze reliefs on the column's pedestals was not completed until May 1854, and the four lions, although part of the original design, were only added in 1867.[34] Each lion weighs seven tons.[35] A hoarding remained around the base of Nelson's Column for some years and some of its upper scaffolding remained in place.[36] Landseer, the sculptor, had asked for a lion that had died at the London Zoo to be brought to his studio. He took so long to complete sketches that its corpse began to decompose and some parts had to be improvised. The statues have paws that resemble cats more than lions.[37]

Barry was unhappy about Nelson's Column being placed in the square. In July 1840, when its foundations had been laid, he told a parliamentary select committee that "it would in my opinion be desirable that the area should be wholly free from all insulated objects of art".[27]

In 1940 the Nazi SS developed secret plans to transfer Nelson's Column to Berlin[b] after an expected German invasion, as related by Norman Longmate in If Britain Had Fallen (1972).[38]

The square has been Grade I listed on the Register of Historic Parks and Gardens since 1996.[39]


A major 18-month redevelopment of the square led by W.S. Atkins with Foster and Partners as sub-consultants was completed in 2003. The work involved closing the eastbound road along the north side and diverting traffic around the other three sides of the square, demolishing the central section of the northern retaining wall and inserting a wide set of steps to the pedestrianised terrace in front of the National Gallery. The construction includes two lifts for disabled access, public toilets and a café. Access between the square and the gallery had been by two crossings at the northeast and northwest corners.[40][41]

Statues and monuments


Barry's scheme provided two plinths for sculptures on the north side of the square.[42] A bronze equestrian statue of George IV by Sir Francis Chantrey, originally intended to be placed on top of the Marble Arch,[22] was installed on the eastern plinth in 1844, while the other remained empty until late in the 20th century.[42] There are two other statues on plinths, both installed during the 19th century: General Sir Charles James Napier by George Cannon Adams in the south-west corner in 1855, and Major-General Sir Henry Havelock by William Behnes in the south-east in 1861.[22] In 2000, the Mayor of London, Ken Livingstone, suggested replacing the statues with figures more familiar to the general public.[43]

Fourth plinth

In the 21st century, the empty plinth in the north-west corner of the square, the "Fourth Plinth", has been used to show specially commissioned temporary artworks. The scheme was initiated by the Royal Society of Arts and continued by the Fourth Plinth Commission, appointed by the Mayor of London.[44]

Other sculptures

There are three busts of admirals against the north wall of the square. Those of Lord Jellicoe (by Sir Charles Wheeler) and Lord Beatty (by William MacMillan) were installed in 1948 in conjunction with the square's fountains, which also commemorate them.[45][46] The third, of the Second World War First Sea Lord Admiral Cunningham (by Franta Belsky) was unveiled alongside them on 2 April 1967.[47]

On the south side of Trafalgar Square, on the site of the original Charing Cross, is a bronze equestrian statue of Charles I by Hubert Le Sueur. It was cast in 1633, and placed in its present position in 1678.[48]

The two statues on the lawn in front of the National Gallery are the statue of James II by Grinling Gibbons to the west of the portico, and of one George Washington, a replica of a work by Jean-Antoine Houdon, to the east.[41] The latter was a gift from the Commonwealth of Virginia, installed in 1921.[49]

Two statues erected in the 19th century have since been removed. One of Edward Jenner, pioneer of the smallpox vaccine, was set up in the south-west corner of the square in 1858, next to that of Napier. Sculpted by William Calder Marshall, it showed Jenner sitting in a chair in a relaxed pose, and was inaugurated at a ceremony presided over by Prince Albert. It was moved to Kensington Gardens in 1862.[50][51] The other, of General Charles George Gordon by Hamo Thornycroft, was erected on an 18-foot high pedestal between the fountains in 1888. It was removed in 1943 and re-sited on the Victoria Embankment ten years later.[52]


Trafalgar square fountain, June 7 2014
Fountain at Trafalgar Square, 2014

In 1841, following suggestions from the local paving board, Barry agreed that two fountains should be installed to counteract the effects of reflected heat and glare from the asphalt surface. The First Commissioner of Woods and Forests welcomed the plan because the fountains reduced the open space available for public gatherings and reduced the risk of riotous assembly.[53] The fountains were fed from two wells, one in front of the National Gallery and one behind it connected by a tunnel. Water was pumped to the fountains by a steam engine housed in a building behind the gallery.[22]

In the late-1930s it was decided to replace the pump and the centrepieces of the fountains. The new centrepieces, designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens, were memorials to Lord Jellicoe and Lord Beatty, although busts of the admirals, initially intended to be placed in the fountain surrounds were placed against the northern retaining wall when the project was completed after the Second World War.[54] The fountains cost almost £50,000. The old ones were presented to the Canadian government and are now located in Ottawa's Confederation Park and Regina's Wascana Centre.[55][56]

A programme of restoration was completed by May 2009. The pump system was replaced with one capable of sending an 80-foot (24 m) jet of water into the air.[57] A LED lighting system that can project different combinations of colours on to the fountains was installed to reduce the cost of lighting maintenance and to coincide with the 2012 Summer Olympics.[55]


People feeding pigeons in Trafalgar Square c.1993
People sitting on lions and feeding pigeons in the square

The square was once famous for feral pigeons and feeding them was a popular activity. Pigeons began flocking to the square before construction was completed and feed sellers became well known in the Victorian era.[58] The desirability of the birds' presence was contentious: their droppings disfigured the stonework and the flock, estimated at its peak to be 35,000, was considered a health hazard.[59][60] A stall seller, Bernie Rayner, infamously sold bird seed to tourists at inflated prices.[61]

In February 2001, the sale of bird seed in the square was stopped[59] and other measures were introduced to discourage the pigeons including the use of birds of prey.[62] Supporters continued to feed the birds but in 2003 the mayor, Ken Livingstone, enacted bylaws to ban feeding them in the square.[63] In September 2007 Westminster City Council passed further bylaws banning feeding birds on the pedestrianised North Terrace and other pavements in the area.[64] Nelson's column was repaired from years of damage from pigeon droppings at a cost of £140,000.[61]


New Year

For many years, revellers celebrating the New Year have gathered in the square despite a lack of celebrations being arranged. The lack of official events was partly because the authorities were concerned that encouraging more partygoers would cause overcrowding. Since 2003, a firework display centred on the London Eye and South Bank of the Thames has been provided as an alternative. Since 2014, New Year celebrations have been organised by the Greater London Authority in conjunction with the charity Unicef, who began ticketing the event to control crowd numbers.[65]


Trafalgar Square Christmas tree8
The Trafalgar Square Christmas tree in 2008

A Christmas ceremony has been held in the square every year since 1947.[66] A Norway spruce (or sometimes a fir) is presented by Norway's capital city, Oslo as London's Christmas tree, a token of gratitude for Britain's support during World War II.[66] (Besides war-time support, Norway's Prince Olav and the country's government lived in exile in London throughout the war.[66])

The Christmas tree is decorated with lights that are switched on at a seasonal ceremony.[67] It is usually held twelve days before Christmas Day. The festivity is open to the public and attracts a large number of people.[68] The switch-on is usually followed by several nights of Christmas carol singing and other performances and events.[69] On the twelfth night of Christmas, the tree is taken down for recycling. Westminster City Council threatened to abandon the event to save £5,000 in 1980 but the decision was reversed.[66]

The tree is selected by the Head Forester from Oslo's municipal forest and shipped, across the North Sea to the Port of Felixstowe, then by road to Trafalgar Square. The first tree was 48 feet (15 m) tall, but more recently has been around 75 feet (23 m). In 1987, protesters chained themselves to the tree.[66] In 1990, a man sawed into the tree with a chainsaw a few hours before a New Year's Eve party was scheduled to take place. He was arrested and the tree was repaired by tree surgeons who removed gouged sections from the trunk while the tree was suspended from a crane.[70]

Political demonstrations

Rally in Trafalgar Square
A demonstration in Trafalgar Square

The square has become a social and political focus for visitors and Londoners, developing over its history from "an esplanade peopled with figures of national heroes, into the country's foremost place politique", as historian Rodney Mace has written. Since its construction, it has been a venue for political demonstrations.[41] The great Chartist rally in 1848, a campaign for social reform by the working class began in the square.[41] A ban on political rallies remained in effect until the 1880s, when the emerging Labour movement, particularly the Social Democratic Federation, began holding protests. On 8 February 1886 (also known as "Black Monday"), protesters rallied against unemployment leading to a riot in Pall Mall. A larger riot ("Bloody Sunday") occurred in the square on 13 November 1887.[71]

The Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament's first Aldermaston March, protesting against the Atomic Weapons Establishment (AWE), began in the square in 1958.[41] One of the first significant demonstrations of the modern era was held in the square on 19 September 1961 by the Committee of 100, which included the philosopher Bertrand Russell. The protesters rallied for peace and against war and nuclear weapons. In March 1968, a crowd of 10,000 demonstrated against US involvement in the Vietnam War before marching to the American Embassy in Grosvenor Square.[72]

Protesting against harassment of photographers under anti-terrorism law, 23 January 2010

Throughout the 1980s, a continuous anti-apartheid protest was held outside South Africa House. In 1990, the Poll Tax Riots began by a demonstration attended by 200,000 people and ultimately caused rioting in the surrounding area.[41] More recently, there have been anti-war demonstrations opposing the Afghanistan War and the Iraq War.[73] A large vigil was held shortly after the terrorist bombings in London on Thursday, 7 July 2005.[74]

In December 2009, participants from the Camp for Climate Action occupied the square for the two weeks during which the UN Conference on Climate Change took place in Copenhagen.[75] It was billed as a UK base for direct action on climate change and saw various actions and protests stem from the occupation.[76][77][78]

In March 2011, the square was occupied by a crowd protesting against the UK Budget and proposed budget cuts. During the night the situation turned violent as the escalation by riot police and protesters damaged portions of the square.[79] In November 2015 a vigil against the terrorist attacks in Paris was held. Crowds sang the French national anthem, La Marseillaise, and held banners in support of the city and country.[80]

Every year on the anniversary of the Battle of Trafalgar (21 October), the Sea Cadet Corps holds a parade in honour of Admiral Lord Nelson and the British victory over the combined fleets of Spain and France at Trafalgar.[81] The Royal British Legion holds a Silence in the Square event on Armistice Day, 11 November, in remembrance of those who died in war. The event includes music and poetry readings, culminating in a bugler playing the Last Post and a two-minute silence at 11 am.[82]


In the 21st century, Trafalgar Square has been the location for several sporting events and victory parades. In June 2002, 12,000 people gathered to watch the England national football team's World Cup quarter-final against Brazil on giant video screens which had been erected for the occasion.[83] The square was used by the England national rugby union team on 9 December 2003 to celebrate their victory in the 2003 Rugby World Cup,[84] and on 13 September 2005 for the England national cricket team's victory in the Ashes series.[85]

On 6 July 2005 Trafalgar Square hosted the announcement of London's bid to host the 2012 Summer Olympics.[86] A countdown clock was erected in March 2011, although engineering and weather-related faults caused it to stop a day later.[87] In 2007, it hosted the opening ceremonies of the Tour de France[88] and was part of the course for subsequent races.[89]

Other uses

Trafalgar Square Grass - May 2007
Trafalgar Square temporarily grassed over in May 2007

The Sea Cadets hold an annual celebration of the Battle of Trafalgar victory along the square. The parade runs from Horse Guard's Parade, along Whitehall to Nelson's Column.[90]

As an archetypal London location, Trafalgar Square featured in film and television productions during the Swinging London era of the late 1960s, including The Avengers,[91] Casino Royale,[92] Doctor Who,[93] and The Ipcress File.[94] It was used for filming several sketches and a cartoon backdrop in the BBC comedy series Monty Python's Flying Circus.[95] In May 2007, the square was grassed over with 2,000 square metres of turf for two days in a campaign by London authorities to promote "green spaces" in the city.[96]

In July 2011, due to building works in Leicester Square, the world premiere of the final film in the Harry Potter series, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2, was held in Trafalgar Square, with a 0.75-mile (1.21 km) red carpet linking the squares. Fans camped in Trafalgar Square for up to three days before the premiere, despite torrential rain. It was the first film premiere ever to be held there.[97]

Other Trafalgar Squares

Trafalgar Square, Sunderland 1
Trafalgar Square in Sunderland: a group of merchant seamen's almshouses dating from 1840.

A Trafalgar Square in Stepney is recorded in Lockie's Topography of London, published in 1810.[98] Trafalgar Square in Scarborough, North Yorkshire gives its name to the Trafalgar Square End at the town's North Marine Road cricket ground.[99]

National Heroes Square in Bridgetown, Barbados, was named Trafalgar Square in 1813, before its better-known British namesake. It was renamed in 1999 to commemorate national heroes of Barbados.[100] There is a life scale replica of the square in Bahria Town, Lahore, Pakistan where it is a tourist attraction and centre for local residents.[101]

See also



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  • Barker, Michael (2005). Sir Edwin Lutyens. Osprey Publishing. ISBN 978-0-7478-0582-3.
  • Crick, Martin (1994). The History of the Social-Democratic Federation. Edinburgh University Press. ISBN 978-1-85331-091-1.
  • Larsen, Darl (2008). Monty Python's Flying Circus: An Utterly Complete, Thoroughly Unillustrated, Absolutely Unauthorized Guide to Possibly All the References. Rowman & Littlefield. ISBN 978-0-8108-6131-2.
  • Longmate, Norman (2012). If Britain Had Fallen: The Real Nazi Occupation Plans (reprinted / illustrated ed.). Frontline Books. ISBN 978-1-84832-647-7.
  • Mace, Rodney (1976). Trafalgar Square: Emblem of Empire. London: Lawrence and Wishart. ISBN 978-0-85315-368-9. Second edition published as Mace, Rodney (2005). Trafalgar Square: Emblem of Empire (2nd ed.). London: Lawrence and Wishart. ISBN 978-1-905007-11-0.
  • Moore, Tim (2003). Do Not Pass Go. Vintage. ISBN 978-0-09-943386-6.
  • Weinreb, Ben; Hibbert, Christopher; Keay, Julia; Keay, John (2008). The London Encyclopedia. Pan MacMillan. ISBN 978-1-4050-4924-5.

Further reading

  • "Fourth Plinth". 12 February 2007. Archived from the original on 8 July 2011. Retrieved 14 September 2016.
  • Hackman, Gill (2014). Stone to Build London: Portland's Legacy. Monkton Farleigh: Folly Books. ISBN 978-0-9564405-9-4. OCLC 910854593. Book includes details of the Portland stone buildings around Trafalgar Square, including St Martin in the Fields, the National Gallery and Admiralty Arch.
  • Hargreaves, Roger (2005). Trafalgar Square: Through the Camera. London: National Portrait Gallery Publications. ISBN 978-1-85514-345-6.
  • Holt, Gavin (1934). Trafalgar Square. London: Hodder & Stoughton. OCLC 220695363.
  • Hood, Jean (2005). Trafalgar Square: A Visual History of London's Landmark through Time. London: Batsford. ISBN 978-0-7134-8967-5.

External links

Charing Cross

Charing Cross () is a junction in London, England, where six routes meet. Clockwise from north these are: the east side of Trafalgar Square leading to St Martin's Place and then Charing Cross Road; the Strand; Northumberland Avenue; Whitehall; The Mall leading to Admiralty Arch and Buckingham Palace; and two short roads leading to Pall Mall.

It makes an unbroken public space with Trafalgar Square in central London. A bronze equestrian statue of Charles I by French sculptor Hubert Le Sueur has stood there since 1675.

The junction takes its name from the medieval Eleanor cross that stood on the site from the 1290s until its destruction on the orders of Parliament in 1647. It gives its name in turn to the immediate locality, and to landmarks including Charing Cross railway station, on the forecourt of which stands the ornate Queen Eleanor Memorial Cross of 1864–1865. This was once the heart of the Westminster hamlet or neighbourhood of Charing.

Until 1931, "Charing Cross" also referred to the part of Whitehall between Great Scotland Yard and Trafalgar Square. Drummonds Bank, on the corner with The Mall, retains the address 49 Charing Cross (not to be confused with Charing Cross Road).Since the early 19th century, Charing Cross has been the notional "centre of London" and the point from which distances from London are calculated.

Charing Cross tube station

Charing Cross (sometimes informally abbreviated as Charing X) is a London Underground station at Charing Cross in the City of Westminster. The station is served by the Bakerloo and Northern lines and provides an interchange with Charing Cross mainline station. It has entrances in Trafalgar Square, Strand and in the mainline station. On the Bakerloo line it is between Embankment and Piccadilly Circus stations and on the Northern line it is between Embankment and Leicester Square stations. The station was served by the Jubilee line between 1979 and 1999, acting as the southern terminus of the line during that period. The station is in fare zone 1.

Charing Cross was originally two separate stations, known for most of their existence as Trafalgar Square and Strand. These were connected and given the current name when the Jubilee line opened.

The station is close to the National Gallery, the National Portrait Gallery, Admiralty Arch, St Martin-in-the-Fields, Canada House, South Africa House, the Savoy Hotel, The Mall, Northumberland Avenue and Whitehall.

Christ Child (sculpture)

Christ Child, also known as In the Beginning or the Millennium Sculpture, is an outdoor sculpture by Michael "Mike" Chapman, located under the portico of St Martins-in-the-Fields at Trafalgar Square in London, United Kingdom. The opening text from the Gospel of John is inscribed around the sculpture: "In the beginning was the word and the word became flesh and lived among us". Chapman has said of the sculpture: "For the millennium I was commissioned to produce a sculpture to be placed in Trafalgar square, during Christmas prior to the celebrations. It seemed to me that a tiny life-size baby carved from stone in such an enormous environment would be the best way to remind us all of just whose birthday we were celebrating. In a 4.5 tonne block of Portland stone, this work can be found at the entrance to the church." It has been called "strikingly modern".

Duke of York's Theatre

The Duke of York's Theatre is a West End Theatre in St Martin's Lane, in the City of Westminster, London. It was built for Frank Wyatt and his wife, Violet Melnotte, who retained ownership of the theatre until her death in 1935. It opened on 10 September 1892 as the Trafalgar Square Theatre, with The Wedding Eve. The theatre, designed by the architect Walter Emden became known as the Trafalgar Theatre in 1894 and the following year became the Duke of York's to honour the future King George V.One of the earliest musical comedies, Go-Bang, was a success at the theatre in 1894. In 1900, Jerome K. Jerome's Miss Hobbs was staged as well as David Belasco's Madame Butterfly, which was seen by Puccini, who later turned it into the famous opera. This was also the theatre where J. M. Barrie's Peter Pan, or The Boy Who Wouldn't Grow Up debuted on 27 December 1904. Many famous British actors have appeared here, including Basil Rathbone, who played Alfred de Musset in Madame Sand in June 1920, returning in November 1932 as the Unknown Gentleman in Tonight or Never.

The theatre was Grade II listed by English Heritage in September 1960. In the late 1970s the freehold of the theatre was purchased by Capital Radio and it closed in 1979 for refurbishment. It reopened in February 1980 and the first production under the patronage of Capital was Rose, starring Glenda Jackson. In 1991 comedian Pat Condell performed sketches at the theatre which were later released on DVD.The Ambassador Theatre Group bought the theatre in 1992; this coincided with the successful Royal Court production of Ariel Dorfman's Death and the Maiden. A host of successes followed including the 21st anniversary performance of Richard O'Brien's The Rocky Horror Show and the Royal Court Classics Season in 1995.

The theatre is the London headquarters of the Ambassador Theatre Group, as well as the producing offices of their subsidiary Sonia Friedman Productions, whose revival of In Celebration starring Orlando Bloom played until 15 September 2007.

Embassy of Burundi, London

The Embassy of Burundi in London is the diplomatic mission of Burundi in the United Kingdom. It is located in Uganda House, next to Admiralty Arch on Trafalgar Square; it shares the building with the High Commission of Uganda. There is no plaque or sign signifying that Uganda House also houses the Burundian embassy, the only sign of this being the flag flying above the building.

Equestrian statue of George IV, Trafalgar Square

The statue of George IV in Trafalgar Square, London, is a bronze equestrian statue by Sir Francis Legatt Chantrey. It depicts the King dressed in ancient Roman attire and riding bareback. The sculpture was originally designed to sit on top of the Marble Arch at the entrance to Buckingham Palace, but was placed in its current location following the King's death.

Fourth plinth, Trafalgar Square

The Fourth plinth is the northwest plinth in Trafalgar Square in central London. It was originally intended to hold an equestrian statue of William IV, but remained bare due to insufficient funds. For over 150 years the fate of the plinth was debated; in 1998, the Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (RSA) commissioned three contemporary sculptures to be displayed temporarily on the plinth. Shortly afterwards, Chris Smith, Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, commissioned Sir John Mortimer to seek opinions from public art commissioners, critics and members of the public as to the future of the plinth.

Mortimer's final report recommended that the commissions remain a rolling programme of temporary artworks rather than settle permanently on one figure or idea to commemorate. In 2003, the ownership of Trafalgar Square was transferred from Westminster City Council to the Mayor of London and this marked the beginning of the Mayor of London's Fourth Plinth Commission as it is now known.

High Commission of South Africa, London

The High Commission of South Africa in London is the diplomatic mission from South Africa to the United Kingdom. It is located at South Africa House, a building on Trafalgar Square, London. As well as containing the offices of the High Commissioner, the building also hosts the South African consulate. It has been a Grade II* Listed Building since 1982.

High Commission of Uganda, London

The High Commission of Uganda in London is the diplomatic mission of Uganda in the United Kingdom. It is located in Uganda House, next to Admiralty Arch on Trafalgar Square; it shares the building with the Embassy of Burundi.In 2011 a protest was held outside by High Commission by diaspora Ugandans opposed to the Presidency of Yoweri Museveni. and also in 2012 by people opposed to the Uganda Anti-Homosexuality Bill.In 2012 it was revealed that two staff at the High Commission were being investigated for suspected smuggling and tax evasion.

Independent Publishers Group

Independent Publishers Group (IPG) is a worldwide distributor for independent general, academic, and professional publishers, founded in 1971 to exclusively market titles from independent client publishers to the international book trade. As per other book wholesalers and distributors, IPG combines its client publishers’ books into a single list, comparable to the larger publishing houses. IPG’s distribution services to publishers include warehousing, bill collecting, and sales to the book trade. IPG currently represents about 1,000 publishers. They are based in Chicago, Illinois. IPG distributes publishers based in Australia, the United Kingdom, Canada, France, Ireland, Switzerland, New Zealand, Israel, and others.

List of night buses in London

The London Night Bus network is a series of night bus routes that serve Greater London. Services broadly operate between the hours of 23:00 and 06:00.

Many services commence from or operate via Trafalgar Square and are extensions or variations of daytime routes and hence derive their number from these; for example, route N73 Oxford Circus to Walthamstow follows that of route 73 as far as Stoke Newington, before continuing further north.

List of public art in Trafalgar Square and the vicinity

This is a list of public art in and around Trafalgar Square in the City of Westminster, London.

Charing Cross, at the junction of Strand and Whitehall, was the site of the first public monument in what is now the City of Westminster, the cross commissioned by Edward I late in the 13th century in memory of his queen, Eleanor of Castile. Destroyed by order of the Long Parliament in 1647, the Eleanor cross was replaced after the Restoration by the equestrian statue of Charles I by Hubert Le Sueur, the oldest public sculpture now standing in the borough. In 1865 a facsimile of the cross was erected in the forecourt of Charing Cross railway station. Charing Cross was declared the official centre of London in 1831 and a plaque marking this status was installed near Le Sueur's statue in 1955.Immediately to the north of Charing Cross lies Trafalgar Square, one of London's most famous public spaces. Conceived as part of John Nash's urban improvements, the square was initially developed from the 1820s onwards. Its centrepiece, Nelson's Column, was constructed in 1839–1842. Charles Barry's 1840 redesign of the square provided plinths for equestrian monuments to George IV and William IV, but sufficient funds were never raised for the latter statue. Most of the memorials since added have had a military or naval flavour, an exception being the statue of the physician Edward Jenner, erected in 1858 but moved to Kensington Gardens only four years later. Another work which originally stood on the square is Hamo Thornycroft's statue of General Gordon; this was removed during World War II and reinstalled on the Victoria Embankment in 1953.

Since 1999 the formerly empty fourth plinth on Trafalgar Square has become London's most prominent showcase for temporary new sculpture.

Nelson's Column

Nelson's Column is a monument in Trafalgar Square in the City of Westminster, Central London built to commemorate Admiral Horatio Nelson, who died at the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805. The monument was constructed between 1840 and 1843 to a design by William Railton at a cost of £47,000 (equivalent to £4,532,261 in 2018). It is a column of the Corinthian order built from Dartmoor granite. The Craigleith sandstone statue of Nelson is by E.H. Baily, and the four bronze lions on the base, added in 1867, were designed by Sir Edwin Landseer.The pedestal is decorated with four bronze relief panels, each 18 feet (5.5 m) square, cast from captured French guns. They depict the Battle of Cape St Vincent, the Battle of the Nile, the Battle of Copenhagen and the death of Nelson at Trafalgar. The sculptors were Musgrave Watson, William F. Woodington, John Ternouth and John Edward Carew, respectively.

It was refurbished in 2006 at a cost of £420,000 (equivalent to £596,901 in 2018), at which time it was surveyed and found to be 14 feet 6 inches (4.42 m) shorter than previously supposed. The whole monument is 169 feet 3 inches (51.59 m) tall from the bottom of the pedestal to the top of Nelson's hat.

Statue of Charles James Napier, Trafalgar Square

A bronze statue of Charles James Napier by the sculptor George Gammon Adams stands in Trafalgar Square in London, United Kingdom. It occupies one of the four plinths in Trafalgar Square, the one to the southwest of Nelson's Column.

General Sir Charles James Napier GCB (not to be confused with his cousin and close contemporary, the Admiral Charles John Napier) was born in 1782 and died in 1853, 19 days after his 71st birthday. He was an officer in the British Army, and served in the Peninsular War, the War of 1812, and later in India. In 1843 he captured Sindh and was made its first Governor, holding the post until his first return to England in October 1847. IN 1849 he was appointed Commander-in-Chief in India and held the post until February 1851, when he returned again to England and retired.

The bronze statue stands on a tall granite pedestal, creating a monument about 12 feet (3.7 m) high. Napier is depicted standing, bareheaded, wearing military uniform with a cloak. He holds up his scabbard in his left hand, with a scroll in his right hand symbolising his governorship of Sind. It was erected in 1855–6 by means of public subscriptions, the most numerous contributors being private soldiers. It bears an inscription stating that Napier was "born in MDCCLXXXII and died LXXI years later in MDCCCLIII". It was quickly criticised as being one of the worst pieces of sculpture in England.A similar marble statue of Napier, also by George Gammon Adams, stands in the Crypt of St Paul's Cathedral, with Napier similarly in uniform and bearheaded, with his right hand resting on his sword and his left hand on his hip holding a scroll.In 1936 it was suggested that the statues of Generals Napier and Havelock in Trafalgar Square should be replaced by statues of Admirals Beatty and Jellicoe, the naval commanders at the Battle of Jutland in 1916, but a place was eventually found for bronze busts of the Edwardian admirals (and later for Admiral Cunningham) against the north wall of the square, without removing the statues of the Victorian generals from their plinths.

It became a Grade II listed building in 1970. Trafalgar Square is itself Grade I listed.

In 2000 the Mayor of London Ken Livingstone suggested that the statues of Napier and Havelock should be removed from Trafalgar Square, because he didn't have any idea who they were.

Statue of Henry Havelock, Trafalgar Square

A bronze statue of Henry Havelock by the sculptor William Behnes, stands in Trafalgar Square in London, United Kingdom. It occupies one of the four plinths in Trafalgar Square, the one to the southeast of Nelson's Column.The bronze statue depicts Major General Sir Henry Havelock KCB as a standing figure in military uniform, with a cloak. Havelock was born in 1795 and died in 1857. He served in the First Anglo-Burmese War in the 1820s and the First Anglo-Afghan War in the 1840s. He recaptured Cawnpore and Lucknow during the Indian Mutiny in 1857, shortly before he died of dysentery.

The statue was reputedly one of the first statues to be made from a photograph. It was erected by public subscription in 1861, on a granite plinth, matching the statue of General Charles James Napier erected to the west in 1855–1856. A copy in Mowbray Park in Sunderland was also erected by public subscription and unveiled in 1861.In 1936, it was suggested that the statues of Generals Havelock and Napier in Trafalgar Square should be replaced by statues of Admirals Beatty and Jellicoe, the naval commanders at the Battle of Jutland in 1916, but a place was eventually found for bronze busts of the Edwardian admirals (and later for Admiral Cunningham) against the north wall of the square, without removing the statues of the Victorian generals from their plinths.

The monument became a Grade II listed building in 1970. Trafalgar Square is itself Grade I listed.

In 2000, the Mayor of London Ken Livingstone suggested that the statues of Havelock and General Charles James Napier should be removed from Trafalgar Square, because he had no idea who they were.

Statue of James II, Trafalgar Square

The statue of James II is an outdoor bronze sculpture located in the front garden of the National Gallery at Trafalgar Square in London, United Kingdom. Probably inspired by French statues of the same period, it depicts James II of England as a Roman emperor, wearing Roman armour and a laurel wreath (traditionally awarded to a victorious Roman commander). It originally also depicted him holding a baton. It was produced by the workshop of Grinling Gibbons, though probably not by Gibbons himself. The statue has been relocated several times since it was first erected in the grounds of the old Palace of Whitehall in 1686, only two years before James II was deposed.

The Mall, London

The Mall () is a road in the City of Westminster, central London, between Buckingham Palace at its western end and Trafalgar Square via Admiralty Arch to the east. Near the east end at Trafalgar Square/Whitehall it is met by Horse Guards Road and Spring Gardens where the Metropolitan Board of Works and London County Council were once based. It is closed to traffic on Saturdays, Sundays, public holidays and on ceremonial occasions.

The Trafalgar St. James London

The Trafalgar St. James London, Curio Collection by Hilton, formerly The Trafalgar Hotel, is a hotel in the City of Westminster, Central London, owned by London & Regional Properties. It was Hilton's first unbranded property.Previously known as the Trafalgar Hotel, it was relaunched as The Trafalgar St. James London in August 2017, following a refurbishment in which the number of rooms has been increased to 131. The hotel is a contemporary boutique hotel located on the south side of Trafalgar Square. The building was once used by the Cunard Steamship Company. The boardroom was used in feature films such as Dr. No and The Ipcress File.

Trafalgar Square Christmas tree

The Trafalgar Square Christmas tree is a Christmas tree donated to the people of Britain by the city of Oslo, Norway each year since 1947. The tree is prominently displayed in Trafalgar Square from the beginning of December until 6 January.

Trafalgar Square, London
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