Westminster, City of

Westminster, City of, inner borough (1991 pop. 181,500) of Greater London, SE England, on the Thames River. Westminster is the location of the principal offices and residences of Great Britain's national government. Important offices and departments are in Whitehall and Downing streets. The monarch lives in Buckingham Palace. Parliament meets in Westminster Palace. The borough has an important railroad terminal (Paddington). In Westminster are the administrative offices of the British Broadcasting Corp.; London's chief shopping district; Harley St., a center of medical practice; and a clothing industry. Westminster School is a leading public school, founded in the 14th cent. and reestablished by Queen Elizabeth I in 1560. Other notable features of the borough are Westminster Cathedral, Westminster Abbey, Saint James's Palace, the National Gallery, the Tate Gallery, the imposing Central Mosque, the Imperial College of Science and Technology, St. James's Park, Hyde Park, parts of Regent's Park and Kensington Gardens, Mme Tussaud's waxworks, and Kensal Green Cemetery, resting place of several literary figures. Westminster Bridge is the second-oldest bridge in London.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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