Admiralty Arch

Admiralty Arch is a large office building in London which incorporates an archway providing road and pedestrian access between The Mall, which extends to the South-West, and Trafalgar Square to the North-East. It was designed by Sir Aston Webb, constructed by John Mowlem & Co and completed in 1912. It adjoins the Old Admiralty Building, hence the name.

The building was commissioned by King Edward VII in memory of his mother Queen Victoria, although he did not live to see its completion. A Latin inscription along the top reads:

(In the tenth year of King Edward VII, to Queen Victoria, from most grateful citizens, 1910)

The sculptural figures of Navigation and Gunnery were designed by the English sculptor Thomas Brock.

Another famous feature of Admiralty Arch is its "nose". On the inside wall of the northernmost arch there is a small protrusion the size and shape of a human nose. There is little or no public information as to why it is there. The nose is at a height of about seven feet, and sits at waist high for anyone riding through the arch on a horse. Tradition holds that the nose is there in honour of the Duke of Wellington, who was known for having a particularly large nose. Royal soldiers would rub Wellington's nose for good luck as they rode through the arch.

Admiralty Arch is a Grade I listed building. In 2000, the Cabinet Office moved into offices in the building, while maintaining its headquarters on Whitehall. It is also home to the Prime Minister's Strategy Unit and the Social Exclusion Task Force.

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