Wednesday December 1st, 2010
One of Britainís most famous landmarks, Nelsonís column was built between 1840 and 1843 to commemorate the Lord Admiralís death in 1805 at the Battle of Trafalgar. Designed by the acclaimed architect, William Railton in 1838, it was then built by the firm Peto & Grissell and cost £47,500 (around £4mil today).
It stands 15ft tall and is decorated with bronze acanthus leaves cast from a British cannon. The pedestal is decorated with bronze panels depicting the Lord Admiralís four great victories, which were cast from captured French cannons. The panels were sculpted by Musgrave Watson, John Ternouth, William F Woodington, and John Edward Carew. The 29 cannon recovered from HMS Victoryís sister ship HMS Royal George was used to make part of the interior base. The structure was not totally completed until 1867, when the four iconic lions (by Sir Edwin Landsleer) were added to the base.
The 18ft statue was sculpted by E. H. Baily in granite from the Foggintor quarries on Dartmoor and faces south looking towards the Admiralty and Portsmouth where the Flagship HMS Victory is docked. To his right flank the flagpoles along the Mall are each topped with representations of Nelsonís ships.
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