Games at the Alexandria Palace

by Selwyn Ward


Despite its regal sounding name, Alexandra Palace was never a royal residence. Located in North London, England, it was originally conceived and built around the time the Civil War was raging between the United States and the Confederacy. It was named after the then Princess of Wales, Alexandra of Denmark, who married Queen Victoria’s eldest son (later Edward VII) in 1863, but it was built with private finance and was always intended as a public venue; indeed, it was referred to, even during its construction, as “The Palace of the People”. Like its South London equivalent, the Crystal Palace, the original building didn’t survive: indeed, it was destroyed by fire only 16 days after its opening. For the industrial Victorians at the zenith of the British Empire, this was but a minor setback: Alexandra Palace was quickly rebuilt and reopened less than four years after it had been razed to the ground

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