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Houses of Parliament
Photograph: Jamie Street/ Unsplash

The Houses of Parliament has its own 360-degree virtual tour

Alexandra Sims

The Houses of Parliament may have closed early for Easter amid increasing lockdown restrictions, but that doesn’t mean you can’t get up close and personal to the London landmark - even from self-isolation on your sofa. 

Before everything went crazy, the UK’s political HQ created its own 360° virtual tour so you can follow in the footsteps of Churchill, Thatcher, Blair and Corbyn and mosey around the House of Commons, the House of Lords and all the spaces in between.

Houses of Parliament 360 virtual tour

Photograph: Houses of Parliament 360 virtual tour

As well as plenty of OTT Victoriana, the tour includes the interiors of the Commons and the Lords, Westminster Hall, the central lobby and St Stephen’s Hall, with its statues of parliamentarians. There are also information symbols along the way that tell you interesting facts and tidbits about the buildings and the important objects inside them. There’s also a special ‘Women and Parliament’ tour spotlighting important women in parliamentary history, like the first female speaker of the House of Commons, Betty Boothroyd, and MP for Blackburn Barbara Castle, who played a huge role in creating the Equal Pay Act in 1970. 

Houses of Parliament 360 virtual tour

Photograph: Houses of Parliament 360 virtual tour

The virtual tour is so comprehensive it really gives you a feel of how small and cosy all the grand parliamentary rooms are, and if you zoom in you can see the creases in the green leather benches in the House of Commons and check out all the clocks and gadgets on the Table of the House. 

And if you happen to have a virtual-reality headset knocking about at home you can make the experience even more immersive. 

Find the virtual tour here

Want more? You can do virtual tours of almost every major London museum and gallery.

Check out these haunting photos of London’s busiest landmarks now they’re completely empty.

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