William the Conqueror hardly had college students in mind when he built the Tower of London in the 1070s.
Megan Clawson, a 21-year-old TikToker, moved into the almost 1,000-year-old tourist attraction to save money after facing high rent prices in a house with her friends for her second year at King’s College London.
“My dad has been working in the tower for quite a few years and when I moved to London for uni, I realized it was pointless me paying London rent when I could just move in with him so that’s what I did in 2020,” she told Caters news agency.
Clawson’s father Chris, 52, is a Beefeater (also called a Yeoman Warder) — one type of uniformed guards guarding the crown jewels in a tradition that has been in place since 1485, according to the BBC.
One perk is on-site accommodation in the outer walls of the tower, available to about 40 families of castle workers, including the Clawsons.
“I live in the walls of the Tower. When it is dark, the Tower looks like a fairy tale fortress,” her father told Lincolnshire Live soon after the 30-year Royal Air Force veteran got the job in 2018. “It is incredibly surreal to say I now live at the Tower of London, you are just immersed in the history and grandeur of it all.”
Over the past millennium, the tower has been used as a fortress, a prison and a palace.
From dog videos to TikTok fame
After taking a few videos of her dog Ethel in her new home, TikTokers started noticing @meganambxr‘s unusual backdrop, and she soon amassed a following of almost 25,000 accounts.
“I have a dog that lives here with me and I love taking videos and pictures of her, so that’s where it started,” she said. “I think it’s amazing that when we take her for walks. It’s in a moat.”
Since then, her content has explored the historical aspects of her abode — though Ethel still makes appearances.
“I started telling the stories of the tower and showing people around the grounds,” she said. Clawson also works as a TV and film extra, according to Caters news agency. “I wanted to share the stories that weren’t as common and I think that’s why a lot of people find my videos interesting.”
Comedian Tom Houghton, whose father is the Constable of the Tower of London, also lives at the Tower — in the Queen’s House — and is known for his TikToks about it.
Inside the historic home
Built as part of a medical center in the 13th century, their narrow home spans four stories, according to Caters news agency.
“Because the house is so tall, it almost feels like I have my own apartment because I have the entire top floor,” said the English and film major originally from Boston in Lincolnshire.
The home is filled with historical traces like arrow-slit windows and memorabilia hung on the wall.
“It’s not your typical house — we have arrow slits in the windows and there’s so many stairs… There’s little tight places [but] despite being built in the 13th century, it’s surprisingly modern-looking,” she said.
The Beefeaters also have access to a private pub called the Yeoman Warders’ Club, The Post previously reported.
“There are certainly two sides to life here at the Tower,” club chairman John Donald told Reuters in 2017 after spending 3-and-a-half years as a Beefeater.
Drawbacks: Security, takeout and tourists
Living in a historical landmark isn’t all mutton and armor. It’s also a One Direction towel draped over the window above her bed so that tourists don’t peek in while she sleeps, she said on TikTok.
“A lot of the time I can’t believe I actually live here — if I sit on my balcony people will take pictures of me thinking I’m part of the attraction!” she told Caters, expressing that privacy is a challenge at times.
Security is tight, too. Family and friends have to be signed in, escorted and kept to a curfew. And if residents want to leave at night, they have to sign out, she said.
“There isn’t a lot of freedom living here because people can see you coming and going and you have to sign out and get permission if you want to leave after the tower closes at night as it’s constantly guarded,” she said.
That might particularly be a problem for college students who occasionally like to go out at night.
“Yo, can you imagine that Henry VIII used to come home steaming to this, and I’m come home steaming to this?” she said in a May 10 video, which she captioned “Walking on the cobbles sober is hard enough; when you’re drunk it’s an Olympic sport.”
She also said that getting food delivered is a challenge.
“I do struggle to get takeaways delivered — they can’t seem to understand which building it is!” she said. “I have to order it to the Starbucks opposite because somehow that’s easier to find than a fortress that was built in the 11th century.”
And sometimes, people don’t believe her — sometimes she can’t even believe it, she said.
“Whenever I tell people that I live here, people don’t believe me and think it’s total rubbish,” she said. “It’s such a privilege living here but I can’t wrap my head around it.”
View original post