Facts about Westminster
Westminster General Info
Westminster is a district in central London; part of the wider City of Westminster, north of the River Thames. It is home to one of the highest concentrations of visitor attractions and historic landmarks in London, including the Palace of Westminster, Buckingham Palace, Westminster Abbey and Westminster Cathedral.
The name Westminster originated from the informal description of the abbey church and royal peculiar of St Peter’s. The abbey was part of the royal palace that had been created hereby Edward the Confessor. It has been the home of the permanent institutions of England’s government continuously since about 1200 and from 1707 the British Government.
The development of the area began with the establishment of the Abbey on a site then called Thorney Island, the choice of the site may in part relate to the natural ford which is thought to have carried Watling Street over the Thames in the vicinity. The Island and surrounding area became known as Westminster in reference to the church.
It was a miraculous appearance of St Peter, a fisherman himself, coming to the island to consecrate the newly built church, which would subsequently develop into Westminster Abbey. He rewarded Edric with a bountiful catch when he next dropped his nets. Edric was instructed to present the King and St. Mellitus, Bishop of London with a salmon and various proofs that the consecration had already occurred.