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Piccadilly Circus is a famous road junction and public space in London's West End, in the City of Westminster, the borough which occupies most of London's central area. The junction was built in 1819, to connect Regent Street with the major shopping street of Piccadilly, today, directly linking theatres on Shaftesbury Avenue, as well as the Haymarket, Coventry Street (onwards to Leicester Square), and Glasshouse Street.
It is a busy meeting meeting place in London, and, due to its beautiful features, which include video display and neon signs, as well as the Shaftesbury memorial fountain and statue of an archer popularly known as Eros, and being surrounded by gorgeous buildings such as the London Pavilion and Criterion Theatre, it has become an attraction on its own.
Piccadilly Circus is surrounded by some of London's major tourists attractions, which include the Shaftesbury Memorial, Criterion Theatre, London Pavilion and several major retail stores, and also boasts numerous nightclubs and bars, which, all together, have made it what it is today - one of London's major people-drawers.
London's Piccadilly Circus can be described as "an attraction filled with attractions". At its southwest side, we find the the Shaftesbury Monument Memorial Fountain, which was moved after World War II from its original position in the centre, erected in 1892-1893, to commemorate the philanthropic works of Lord Shaftesbury, famous Victorian politician and philanthropist. The monument's centre piece is Alfred Gilbert's nude statue of an archer, sometimes referred to as The Angel of Christian Charity and popularly known as Eros, inspired after the mythical Greek god of love.
On the northeastern side of Piccadilly Circus, there is the beautiful London Pavilion, currently a shopping arcade, and part of the Trocadero Centre, with a history traced back to 1859, when the original building was built, over the years, the Pavilion suffering structural alterations, in 1986, being rebuilt and transformed into a now popular London shopping arcade, in 2000 being connected to the neighbouring Trocadero Centre.
On the south side of Piccadilly Circus, there is another "must see", when exploring the junction - Criterion Theatre, a Grade II listed building, which was designed by Thomas Verity. Between 1996 and 2005, it hosted productions of the Reduced Shakespeare Company, The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged), The Complete History of America, and The Bible, The Complete Word of God, including the first round of recalls for successful auditionees in ITV's Pop Idol. It is used by leading drama institution Academy of Live and Recorded Arts as a venue for their graduating students' annual showcase, as well.
Other major attractions that can be found in the Piccadilly Circus area, include the magnificent Haymarket Thatre Royal, designed by celebrated architect John Nash, the Royal Academy of Arts, founded in 1768, to promote the fine Arts in Britain, and The Mall, a ceremonial route that links Trafalgar square, via Admiralty Arch, to Buckingham Palace, its eastern end housing the Horse Guards Parade, where the world-famous Trooping the Colour ceremony takes place.