Despite its prices, this pub is synonymous with Westminster drinking culture, and it was even here that the Government chose to announce their change in licensing laws in 2005, rather than in one of the numerous bars inside the palace itself.
The current interior is late 19th century, but there has apparently been a pub on this site for much longer, and politicians, civil servants and journalists have drunk here in equal measure for generations (sometimes literally). In fact, so much part of the machinery of Government is the Red Lion that your author once heard a rumour that a replica had been built in the Cold War nuclear bunker to which the Government were to be evacuated in the event of an attack.
On most afternoons/ evenings you can still find a Member of Parliament propping up the bar, providing you know who you are looking for. If you have trouble spotting one, watch for someone dashing out of the door when a loud bell sounds. The Parliamentary division bell is installed in all local bars to make sure they don't miss key votes.