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History (revisited)

(April 1 – June 30, 2021)

Carsten T. Rees


Keith Martin

Buckingham Palace in lockdown

Buckingham Palace, London

May 26th, 2021 - 15:00 GMT+1

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© 2021 Keith Martin, All Rights Reserved.


Buckingham Palace during lockdown: entirely without tourists


Nikon D850, Nikkor 16mm fisheye lens, 360Precision Adjuste pano head

Buckingham Palace – specifically the area in front of the entrance and around the Victoria Memorial – is normally awash with tourists. But during lockdown? Not so much! Things haven't been this quiet within living memory at the very least. It really is a strange point in time, something that will be forever remembered and discussed in history lessons for generations to come.

This is the Queen’s residence when she is in London, but it wasn’t originally built for royalty. In 1703 the first Duke of Buckingham built Buckingham House for himself, then almost 60 years later it was bought by King George III as a residence for his wife Queen Charlotte and their children when they weren’t staying at the official royal residence of the time, St James’s Palace. It was only declared the official royal London residence in 1837 when Victoria became queen. It was considered to be a townhouse, although with 240 bedrooms and 775 rooms overall, it’s not what most people think of when they say that name.

Coutts is the royal family’s bank, and while the Queen famously never carries cash, there is a Coutts bank ATM in the basement of Buckingham Palace. There is also a post office, cinema, cafeteria, and 78 bathrooms – one of which John Lennon claimed the Beatles smoked a joint in back in 1964!

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