Originally conceived as an outer gateway to Constitution Hill and as a grand entrance into central London from the west, the Wellington Arch was erected in 1825 and moved to its current position on Hyde Park Corner in 1882.
Commemorating the victories of the Duke of Wellington in the Napoleonic Wars, the triumphal arch was designed by Decimus Burton with the intention of being topped with a sculpture of a ‘quadriga’ – an ancient four-horse chariot – but instead a statue of the duke was added.
However, this original design touch was realised in 1912, when a bronze statue of the chariot and its rider was added to the arch replacing the statue of Wellington, which was itself relocated to Aldershot to create the Wellington Monument.
Flanked by two impressive marble pillars, the stonework of the arch beneath the facade comes from a range of former London buildings and uses the neoclassical method of construction to create an impressive aesthetic effect.
Facing east down Constitution Hill, the arch is a popular London attraction and resides on the western corner of Green Park, in the middle of the Hyde Park Corner roundabout.
Opening times and admission
The arch is open to the public every day between the hours of 10 am to 6 pm and visitors can enjoy a large number of events and attractions at the popular landmark throughout the year.
Admission is free to members of English Heritage, while non-members can gain entry for £4.30 for adults, £2.60 for children aged between five and 15, and £3.90 for concessions.
Private hire and exhibitions
Hollow within, the arch is managed by English Heritage and contains a changing selection of historical attractions that visitors could enjoy.
Visitors can hire out many of the rooms for private functions, while every year a massive exhibition is held at the Wellington Arch, with this year’s event set to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo.
Weddings at the Wellington Arch
Visitors to the English capital that are planning their nuptials may not realise that this stunning location can actually be hired as part of a full wedding day package through English Heritage.
Hosting an array of receptions, lunches, dinners and events every year, lovers keen to tie the knot in one of the most memorable fashions possible should consider the impact that a Wellington Arch wedding could have upon their guests.
More information on bookings and events can be found at the English Heritage website.
Travel options for Wellington Arch visitors
Individuals keen to experience for themselves the beauty of Wellington Arch during their time in the English capital might like to make their journey to and from this popular tourist hotspot that much less stressful.
With this in mind, several London Underground stations can be found in close proximity to Wellington Arch, with the nearest facilities being:
- Hyde Park Corner (Piccadilly line)
- Green Park (Jubilee, Piccadilly and Victoria lines)
- St James’s Park (Circle and District lines)
- Victoria (Circle, District and Victoria lines)
London Victoria station also offers travellers the chance to make use of overground rail links and the station can be found just a short walk from Wellington Arch on Victoria Street, with access via Bridge Place, Belgrave Road or Bulleid Way.
Several bus services can also be made use of by visitors planning journeys to the Wellington Arch, with full details of nearby stops, service timetables and hours of operation available via the Transport for London website.
Other attractions in the area
But it is not just the Wellington Arch that draws millions of visitors every year to this bustling location, with countless other nearby attractions helping to make Hyde Park and the surrounding area a real treat for travellers from across the globe.
Other nearby attractions that visitors might like to enjoy during their time in the capital include:
- Buckingham Palace (0.4 miles, eight minutes’ travel time on foot/by Tube)
- Westminster Abbey (1.2 miles, 21 minutes)
- The National Gallery (1.1 miles, 14 minutes)
- The Science Museum (1.3 miles, 14 minutes)
- The Natural History Museum (1.3 miles, 16 minutes)
- Palace of Westminster (1.2 miles, 17 minutes)
- Ripley’s Believe It or Not! London (0.9 miles, eight minutes)
- The Coca-Cola London Eye (1.6 miles, 22 minutes)
- Kensington Gardens (1.3 miles, 13 minutes)
- Jewel Tower (1.3 miles, 18 minutes)
- The London Dungeon (1.5 miles, 23 minutes)
- The British Museum (1.6 miles, 19 minutes)