From the Reformation to 1834

The Commons Chamber in the 16th Century

How did the configuration of St Stephen's Chapel influence our present two-party system of government versus opposition? Find out more about the first permanent home of the House of Commons

The Commons Chamber in the 17th and 18th centuries

St Stephen's Chapel around 1755

How did the Chapel of St Stephen's change over decades of use by the Commons? Discover how Sir Christopher Wren converted the medieval chapel into a classical building

The House of Lords 1801-1834

The House of Lords around 1810

What was the Court of Requests, and how did it become one of the homes of the House of Lords?

Wyatt's improvements to the Palace, 1799

The Palace of Westminster around 1820

The medieval Palace of Westminster was rapidly transformed from the 18th century onwards. Explore this fascinating phase of Palace development

Soane's improvements, 1824-1827

John Soane built the Royal Gallery of the old Palace of Westminster in 1823-4. Find out more about the history of this room

Destruction by fire, 1834

The Palace of Westminster on fire in 1834

Learn how the medieval Palace of Westminster was continuously threatened by fire over the centuries and how it was eventually devastated by the Great Fire of 1834

Also in this section

Important dates in the history of the Palace of Westminster, from the Tudors to its destruction in the Great Fire of 1834