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Speakers' Corner, London

#741 of 3,305 in Things to do in London
A Speakers' Corner is an area where open-air public speaking, debate and discussion are allowed. The original and most noted is in the northeast corner of Hyde Park in London, UK. Speakers here may talk on any subject, as long as the police consider their speeches lawful, although this right is not restricted to Speakers' Corner only. Contrary to popular belief, there is no immunity from the law, nor are any subjects proscribed, but in practice the police tend to be tolerant and therefore intervene only when they receive a complaint. On some occasions in the past, they have intervened on grounds of profanity. Historically there were a number of other areas designated as Speakers' Corners in other parks in London (e.g., Lincoln's Inn Fields Finsbury Park, Clapham Common, Kennington Park, and Victoria Park). More recently they have been set up in other British cities, and there are also Speakers' Corners in other countries. On Sunday 18th June 2017 police began to remove speakers from speaking on boxes ladders or other elevated platforms. On 24 June after national newspaper coverage and several thousand submissions to the police the policy was changed to allow ladders but only small step ladders.Hyde ParkThough Hyde Park Speakers' Corner is considered the paved area closest to Marble Arch, legally the public speaking area extends beyond the Reform Tree and covers a large area from Marble Arch to Victoria Gate, then along the Serpentine to Hyde Park Corner and the Broad Walk running from Hyde Park Corner to Marble Arch.
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Speakers' Corner Reviews
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  • What an experience!!!! Honestly nothing is accomplished because it is just people yelling at each other, but I loved this unique experience! Only happens on Sundays after about 4:30pm  more »
  • Crowds of 200 or so Muslims praying en masse while protected by police. They will not protect you. They are instructed to remove anyone who might be annoying or critical of the Muslims on any one day....  more »
  • Speakers' Corner is a really interesting spot, if you are there at the right time. We were there a few years ago and we had a whale of a time with a speaker. However, the most recent time we visited t...  more »
  • Go for the speakers, stay for the ice cream. I had my first Twister in ages from a seller just outside the park. It was served at the ideal temperature and there was a bin provided for my wrapper. I would have put the stick in too but I'd walked back in to the park by then. I only give it 4/5 because of all the roads.
  • Great experience to watch people expressing themselves without inhibitions. Some people were talking from the fringes of society, other people had interesting things to say. There is something for everyone. Hyde park always makes for a good day out.
  • An interesting experience. Arrived at 1ish and stayed for a few hours. Haven't experienced anything like this before. Worth the visit.
  • Met lots of old friends & lots of interesting folk. I struggled with the concept of a person wanting to explain some topic & being instantly shouted down or heckled by a crowd of rent a mob types. Apart from that it was good to find other people who had a different point of view to my own & for them to explain patiently their beliefs or teachings.
  • Delicious waffles with ice cream at the caffe. Very close to the Animals at war memorial, when the millions of horses and other animals perished. “They had no choice”. In the spring amazing a red tulips garden takes place!
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