(b. 1320s, Yeaveley, Derbys, d. 1400, London)

Westminster Hall

Palace of Westminster, London

Westminster Hall is the oldest building on the Parliamentary estate. It is almost the only vestige of the old royal Palace of Westminster, dated originally from Norman times.

The magnificent hammer-beam roof of Westminster Hall is the largest medieval timber roof in Northern Europe. Measuring 20.7 by 73.2 metres, the roof was commissioned in 1393 by Richard II (1377-1399), and is a masterpiece of design. Besides commissioning a new roof for Westminster Hall, King Richard II was also responsible for several other embellishments. Many of these emphasised the sacred character of his kingship.

The work on the roof was largely undertaken by the King's chief mason Henry Yevele and the carpenter Hugh Herland. Yevele had been involved in nearly all the great building projects of the late 14th century, such as the Tower of London, Westminster Abbey and Canterbury Cathedral. He also built the Jewel Tower in 1365-66.

© Web Gallery of Art, created by Emil Krén and Daniel Marx.