Founded in 1682 by Charles II as a retreat for army veterans who had become unfit for duty, through injury or long service, the Royal Hospital Chelsea was built on the site of a theological college founded by James I in 1610. The buildings were designed and built by Sir Christopher Wren, and then added to by Robert Adam and Sir John Soane. The hospital houses some 300 'In-Pensioners', some of whom do voluntary work as tour guides, clerical assistants and ground staff. Visitors can stroll around the grounds, gain admission to the Chapel, Great Hall, Museum and souvenir shop.
Facilities – at a glance
Suitable for all child ages
- Suitable for children of all ages
- Parking nearby
- Facilities: Induction loop in post office, wheelchair lift, ramps
- Accessible toilets
- Open all year
- Opening Times: Open all year, Mon-Sat, 10-12 & 2-4, Sun 2-4. Tours Mon-Fri 10 & 1.30 (must book min 4 wks in advance). Closed 25-26 Dec & Good Fri. Museum & shop closed wknds
Also in the area
About the area
The UK's capital was founded by the Romans shortly after they invaded in 43AD. Since then it’s evolved into one of the greatest cities on earth. From a bloody, squalid history to the vanguard of fashion in the Swinging 1960s to the buzzing metropolis it is today, London has something for everyone. There are very British pursuits like the Oxford and Cambridge boat race, changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace and an impressive collection of traditional English pubs. And that’s not to mention world-renowned arts venues, galleries and museums, award-winning theatre and unrivalled shopping – all found within a few Tube stops of each other.
London’s royal history is not to be missed. Visitors can roam around one of Britain’s finest medieval castles and royal prison, and learn about the final days of Anne Boleyn at the Tower of London or, for the less bloodthirsty, visit the Queen’s London home, Buckingham Palace. Don’t miss out on exploring the capital’s Royal Parks – from St James’ Park and Hyde Park in the centre to the majestic Hampton Court and wilderness of Richmond Park in the southwest.
Places to Stay
Restaurants and Pubs
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