• 1630s
    • From Medieval Pasture to Royal Park

    • 1637

      The King’s Great New Park

      Richmond, Surrey

      Map of 1610 drawn by John Speed, entitled ‘Surrey described and divided into hundreds’. The map is labelled: ‘described by the travills [travels/efforts] of John Norden and augme[n]ted and performed by John Speede’. The great Tudor Palaces of Richmond and Nonsuch are illustrated; the map inset shows the area near Richmond Palace to be enclosed as a Royal Park.  The Hearsum Collection MA0057

  • 1720s
    • The Georgian and Regency Periods

    • 1725

      George I

      A ‘Shooting Box’ for the King

      Aquatinted print of White Lodge, showing the earliest known image of ‘His Majesty’s Villa in Richmond Park’, during the reign of George II (1727–1760). The Lodge was originally a simple box-shaped villa set directly in the hunting ground of Richmond Park, with no enclosed gardens. The King’s and Queen’s Pavilions, later placed on either side of the central villa, were not constructed until the 1760s. Royal Collection Trust / © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2018

    • 1727

      George II and Henrietta Howard

      White Lodge and Marble Hill House

      The elevation of Marble Hill House in Twickenham, London, commissioned by Henrietta Howard, and designed by Colen Campbell with Henry Lord Herbert, later 9th Earl of Pembroke; built by Roger Morris between 1724 and 1729. First published in Vitruvius Britannicus, Volume III, 1725. Lord Herbert and Roger Morris (possibly assisted by Colen Campbell and Lord Burlington) simultaneously collaborated on the design and construction of White Lodge in Richmond Park. Republished by Dover Publications Inc. USA (2006)

    • 1727

      Sir Robert Walpole

      Prime Minister and keen huntsman

      Artist’s impression of an early image of White Lodge, showing the East entrance. This drawing shows that a causeway originally enabled access to the back of the building, which was built on a sloping bank. The causeway had distinctive features, which were often employed by the architect, Roger Morris, namely ‘oculi below it, and free-standing ringed columns…at its end’ (Hewlings, 2009). The original pen and wash drawing by Augustin Heckel was referenced in Robert Walpole’s Aedes Walpolianae, first published in 1747 (and in several subsequent editions).  Drawing by Heloise Spring, 2017

  • 1730s
    • 1730

      Caroline of Ansbach

      The Queen’s favourite residence

      Painting of deer sheltering among veteran oak trees in Richmond Park, with White Lodge in the distance, by a local Richmond artist, James Isaiah Lewis (c1861 – 1934). The painting shows the Western approach to the Lodge, known to this day as ‘The Queen’s Ride’. The Hearsum Collection PR0166

  • 1740s
    • 1747

      English Palladian Villa

      An ‘Arcadian’ vista

      Photograph of the view from White Lodge towards Pen Ponds. In the foreground, trees frame a distant view of the Ponds, where water reflects the foliage and sky. These natural features were essential attributes of the Arcadian vistas so beloved of the 18th century gentry in England. They were inspired by the ‘Classical landscape’ paintings of Claude Lorraine. Photo: Brian Slater. RBS/PHO/WL(12 May 2014)

  • 1750s
    • 1751

      Princess Amelia

      The Richmond Park affair

      Aquatinted print of Richmond Park showing the breaching of the Park walls by the ‘bound-beating party’, on 16 May 1751. The image first appeared as the frontispiece for an anonymous volume, possibly written by John Lewis, Two Historical Accounts of the Making – New Forest in Hampshire…and Richmond New Park in Surry [sic] (London: M Baxter Brown, 1751). Digital copy held at The Hearsum Collection

    • 1751

      Building work at White Lodge

      Enlargement and decoration

      Page from Colen Campbell’s Vitruvius Brittanicus or The British Architect, Fourth Edition (London: Woolfe and Gandon, 1767); this expanded issue included new designs by John Woolfe and James Gandon. Elevation showing the West façade of White Lodge, and the ground level passageways leading from the main villa to the Pavilions on either side. By kind permission of Peter Wilson

    • 1754

      Richmond Park, 1754

      Engraving of John Eyre’s map

      Map entitled ‘A Plan of His Majesty’s New Park at Richmond in Surrey’ by Edward John Eyre (1754), showing White Lodge (identified by its original name of New Lodge) with the pavilions and curved linking corridors already in place. Facsimile published by Whiteman and Bass, date unknown. The Hearsum Collection MA0041

  • 1760s
    • 1761

      John Stuart, Earl of Bute

      A misunderstood politician

      Portrait of John Stuart, 3rd Earl of Bute, by Allan Ramsay, oil on canvas, 1758. The painting is annotated in the bottom right-hand corner with painted lettering, recording his public offices and his rank as a Knight of the Thistle and of the Garter. The National Gallery of Scotland

    • 1761

      Bute as Ranger of Richmond Park

      The end of stag hunting for sport

       

      An early 17th century painting by an unknown artist, entitled ‘Nonsuch Palace’. It depicts a stag hunt on horseback with hounds, a sport relished by the nobility. Nonsuch Palace, seen in the background, was dismantled between 1682-3 by Barbara Countess of Castlemaine, a mistress of Charles II. She sold the building materials in order to settle her gambling debts. Nonsuch Palace was originally commissioned by Henry VIII, and lay in the County of Surrey, in which Richmond Park is also situated. © The Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge

    • 1768

      Princess Caroline Matilda

      A marriage alliance made at White Lodge

      Portrait of Queen Caroline Mathilde of Denmark, with her sister, Princess Louise of Great Britain, by Frances Cotes, oil on canvas, 1767. Caroline is shown standing beside her seated sister, Louisa, who was still only 16 years old when this portrait was painted. Held in The Royal Collection, Windsor. Source: Wickimedia/commons

    • 1768

      ‘...they are always at White Lodge on a Sunday...’

      First reference to ‘White Lodge’

      Double portrait of Queen Sophia Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz and King George III, by George Noble, line engraving, published 1787. NPG D10816 © National Portrait Gallery

  • 1770s
    • 1772

      The Royal Family at Kew

      The Royal Botanic Gardens

      Portrait of Frederick, Prince of Wales, and his sisters, by Philip Mercier, oil on canvas, 1733.  The 26 year-old Prince is depicted playing the cello accompanied by three of his younger sisters: Anne, The Princess Royal aged 24, is at the harpsichord; The Princess Caroline, aged 20, is plucking a Mandora (a form of lute); while The Princess Amelia, aged 22, reads from the work of John Milton. Kew Palace can be seen in the background. NPG 1556 © National Portrait Gallery. Source: Wickimedia/commons

  • 1780s
    • 1780

      White Lodge in disrepair

      Neglect and dilapidation

      An underground cold store-room dating to the 1750s, which was covered c1816 by earth banked against the East-facing side of both quadrant corridors of White Lodge. These store-rooms are known as ‘the beehives’ because of their distinctive domed ceilings. They are particularly difficult to maintain due to their subterranean location, and give a strong indication of the ‘dilapidation’ that would rapidly ensue if all parts of the building were not constantly maintained. Photo: Katie Davison. RBS/PHO/WL(2017)

  • 1790s
    • 1792

      George III in Richmond Park

      Renovation and restoration

      Portrait of King George III in his coronation robes, by Allan Ramsay, oil on canvas, c1765. Art Gallery of South Australia (Accession Number 0.561). Source: Wickimedia/commons

  • 1800s
    • 1801

      Henry Addington

      A ‘middle class’ Prime Minister

      Portrait of Henry Addington, First Viscount Sidmouth, by Sir William Beechey, oil on canvas, 1803.  Painted at the time he was Prime Minister (1801–04).  NPG 5774 © National Portrait Gallery

    • 1801

      Queen Charlotte and the Princesses

      A royal rendezvous

      Aquatinted print by J Gendall depicting White Lodge: ‘The New Lodge, Richmond Park, the Seat of Viscount Sidmouth’. Plate 18, Volume 4; No 22 of Ackermann’s Repository of Arts.  Published 1 October 1824. The Hearsum Collection PR0156

    • 1802

      ‘Social spirit’ of Addington’s White Lodge

      A valued and faithful servant

      Print of the ‘New Lodge at Richmond Park – Seat of Viscount Sidmouth’, undated (c1801–44). Artist unknown. The Hearsum Collection DC0144

    • 1803

      William Pitt ‘the Younger’

      A political rival

      Caricature by James Gillray entitled ‘Britannia between Death and the Doctor’s – Death may decide when Doctor’s [sic] disagree’. This satirical drawing shows a fainting Britannia with three ‘doctors’: William Pitt (the Younger) kicks the departing Prime Minister, Henry Addington, out of the door, while stepping on another rival politician, Charles James Fox.  The figure of death, wearing Napoleon’s hat, threatens Britannia. Hand-coloured etching. Published by H Humphrey, 20 May 1804. Source: Library of Congress, Prints & Photographs Division, LC-USZC4-8794. Wikimedia/commons

    • 1805

      Humphry Repton

      A garden for White Lodge

      Aquatinted print of a garden design by Humphry Repton, depicting the West Front of White Lodge, before the gardens were enclosed against the deer and cattle, which then roamed freely around the Lodge. The diagonal lines which are visible in the image are caused by two flaps; these open to reveal Repton’s proposed garden transformation (see next image). Published by J Taylor, 1 February 1816. The Hearsum Collection PR0221

    • 1805

      Admiral Lord Nelson

      Plotting the Battle of Trafalgar

      Postcard featuring a painting by A D McCormick R I, c1923. A depiction of Lord Nelson visiting Henry Addington, Lord Sidmouth, at White Lodge in Richmond Park, on 10 September 1805: drawing on a tablecloth with his finger dipped in Port wine, Nelson outlined his plan to engage and break the Franco-Spanish line, a strategy he would carry out at the fateful Battle of Trafalgar, 21 October 1805. The painter has imagined the room at White Lodge rather fancifully, but the representation of the table is entirely accurate. It still exists in a private collection; a brass plaque affixed to the table c1805 records its provenance. Image by kind permission of the Sidmouth Family

    • 1805

      The Battle of Trafalgar

      Nelson’s crowning and final victory

      Portrait of Admiral Horatio Nelson by Lemuel Francis Abbott, oil on canvas, 1797. NPG 394 © National Portrait Gallery

  • 1810s
    • 1813

      Princess Elizabeth

      Addington made her Deputy Ranger

      Portrait enamel of Princess Elizabeth, Landgravine of Hesse Homburg (1770 – 1840), third daughter of King George III, after a drawing by Henry Edridge ARA; the enamel itself was painted by Henry Bone RA in December 1810. The frame was incorrectly inscribed when the creation date on the counter-enamel was misunderstood as being Princess Elizabeth’s birthdate. Image source: Philip Mould and Company, Pall Mall, London

    • 1815

      Duke of Wellington

      Defeat of Napoleon

      Portrait of Arthur Wellesley, the 1st Duke of Wellington by Thomas Lawrence, oil on canvas, c1815–16.  Apsley House, the Wellington Museum, London. Ref WM1567-1948. Source: Wickimedia/commons

    • 1816

      Richard Brinsley Sheridan

      Playwright and politician

      Aquatinted print by J Gendall depicting ‘Richmond Park Entrance, as seen from within the Park’. The image gives a vivid impression of Richmond Park as a leisure ground, at the time when Richard Sheridan and other celebrated friends of Lord Sidmouth’s were his frequent guests in the Park. Published by R Ackermann’s Repository of Arts, the Strand, London (1819). The Hearsum Collection PR0209

  • 1820s
    • 1828

      Sir Walter Scott

      A Scottish gathering

      Sir Walter Scott (1771–1832), by Henry Raeburn, oil on canvas 1822. Scottish National Gallery. Ref PG1286. Source: Wickimedia/commons

  • 1830s
    • The Reign of Queen Victoria

    • 1837

      Queen Victoria

      A new era

      Portrait of the young Queen Victoria (b1819, r1837 – 1901) by W Warman, after a painting by Thomas Sully. Watercolour, 1838. NPG 1891a © National Portrait Gallery

    • 1837

      ‘Poor Tom’

      A folk song learnt at White Lodge

      Words of a traditional folk song, entitled ‘Poor Tom’, transcribed by Geoffrey Arkwright. Printed in the Journal of the Folk-Song Society 1 (3), ‘Songs from the Collection of W. P. Merrick’ (1901), p 7. Illustrations: Rice Bunting bird, drawn by A Bowen (1848) and a decorative border, unattributed.  Source: reusableart.com

  • 1840s
    • 1844

      Mary, Duchess of Gloucester

      Death of Lord Sidmouth

      Portrait of Princess Mary, Duchess of Gloucester and Edinburgh, the 11th and last surviving child of George III, by Joseph Epenetus Coombs, after Sir Thomas Lawrence, mezzotint and stipple engraving, published 1841. NPG D8018 © National Portrait Gallery

  • 1850s
    • 1858

      The Prince of Wales

       Exam preparation at White Lodge

      Portrait of the young Edward, Prince of Wales by George Richmond, pastel, 1858. NPG 5217 © National Portrait Gallery

    • 1858

      Seclusion at White Lodge

      The profligate son

      This delightful picture of a Victorian picnic (c1860) indicates that there were some amusing diversions to be had, even in the remote setting of a deer park. History does not relate if young Prince Edward was allowed to enjoy such occasions during his stay in Richmond Park. Coloured engraving reproduced in John Hampson, The English at Table (London: William Collins, 1944). Private Collection

    • 1858

      Queen Victoria’s paintings

      of White Lodge and Richmond Park

      Painting by Queen Victoria depicting a view of the garden at White Lodge, watercolour, May 1858. Royal Collection Trust / © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2018

  • 1860s
    • 1861

      Victoria and Albert

      Mourning the Duchess of Kent

      Watercolour painting by William Leighton Leitch, 1861, depicting the gardens of White Lodge with two female figures wearing mourning dress. The shorter woman may be an image of Queen Victoria herself. She had retreated to White Lodge with her husband, following the death of her mother, the Duchess of Kent, on 16 March 1861. Royal Collection Trust / © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2018

    • 1869

      The Teck Family

      A long occupancy

      Photograph of the Teck Family at White Lodge, 1897. L-R: Prince Francis, the Duke of Teck (standing), the Duchess of Teck (seated), Prince Alexander, Prince Adolphus and Princess Victoria May, Duchess of York. Photographer unknown. Royal Collection Trust / © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2018

  • 1870s
    • 1870

      The Duchess of Teck

      Family life at White Lodge

      Photograph of the Blue Room, which was Princess Mary Adelaide’s boudoir (or small drawing room; originally the ‘privy chamber’ of the 18th century Lodge), reproduced in The Strand Magazine, Vol VI (July–Sept 1893). Photo: Gunn and Stuart, Richmond. The Hearsum Collection DC0358   

    • 1870

      The Duke of Teck

      Interior designer and gardener

      Postcard featuring a photograph of the Duke of Teck seated in an open carriage, published by Malvern and Cheltenham, undated. Photographer unknown. Royal Collection Trust / © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2018 

    • 1872

      The Parks Regulation Act, 1872

      Page from a copy of Government legislation, headed ‘Royal Parks and Gardens’. Chapter 15: An Act for the Regulation of the Royal Parks and Gardens, 27 June 1872; known as the Parks Regulation Act (1872). The Hearsum Collection DC0326

    • 1873

      Duke of Wellington

      Attends a ball at White Lodge

      Painting entitled ‘The Duchess of Richmond’s Ball’ by Robert Hillingford, oil on canvas, c.1870. The painting depicts a ball at Goodwood House, the family seat of the Dukes of Richmond. The occasion evidently had a strong military theme, and is reminiscent of the Tecks’ ball at White Lodge in 1873, which was held to commemorate the Battle of Waterloo. The Tecks’ Guest of Honour was the 2nd Duke of Wellington, whose illustrious father had led the allies to final victory against Napoleon. Source: Wickimedia/commons

    • 1874

      Princess May

      The future Queen Mary

      Detail of a portrait of Princess Victoria ‘May’ (Mary) of Teck, photographed two weeks before her wedding, which took place on 6 July 1893. She wears a diamond rivière necklace, a gift from her future parents-in-law, King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra; it was given in memory of their elder son, the Duke of Clarence, to whom May had been betrothed before his untimely death from pneumonia in January 1892. Photo: James Lafayette. Source: Wickimedia/commons

    • 1874

      A blissful childhood

      ‘She was no end of a romp’

      Photograph of the great Cedrus libani [Cedar of Lebanon] tree in the grounds of White Lodge; the same tree that Princess ‘May’, later Queen Mary, had recalled playing beneath as a child. The image dates to c1960, and features students of The Royal Ballet School enjoying their break. Note the gardener with his wooden wheelbarrow in the background.  RBS/PHO/WL

    • 1874

      Princess May and the ballerina

      Taglioni’s Dancing Class

      Drawing from life by Margaret Rolfe, depicting a dancing lesson taught by the great Paris Opera ballerina, Marie Taglioni (1804–1884), at No 6 Connaught Square, London. Taglioni (far right) is adjusting the pose of Princess May, watched by Rolfe, who is shown in a white dress, en pointe. Taglioni’s assistant, Mme Jacobi, is seen on the far left of the image. Watercolour and ink, c1877–80. © Victoria and Albert Museum, London

    • 1874

      Elizabeth of Austria-Hungary

      ‘Sissi’ visits White Lodge

      Portrait of the Empress Elizabeth of Austria-Hungary by Franz Xaver Winterhalter, oil on canvas, 1865. Kunsthistorisches Museum in Wien [Vienna], Hofburg. Source: Wickimedia/commons

  • 1880s
    • 1881

      Henry Irving and Ellen Terry

      Victorian celebrities at White Lodge

      Colour tinted postcard featuring a photograph of Henry Irving as Dr Primrose, (The Vicar) and Ellen Terry as Olivia in Olivia, W G Wills's adaptation of The Vicar of Wakefield by Oliver Goldsmith (1730-1774). Terry first performed the role of Olivia at the Royal Court Theatre in 1878. This image shows a scene from a revival of the play at the Lyceum Theatre in 1885. Photo: Berlin. Published by Window and Grove. RBS/OBJ/WHI

    • 1885

      Financial ruin and scandal

      The Tecks in exile

      The city of Florence in Tuscany, Italy, where the Teck Family spent several months of their embarrassing ‘exile’ to the Continent in 1885, prompted by the unsustainable levels of debt they had incurred in England. Princess May, in particular, loved discovering Florence’s great art galleries, churches and museums. Photo: Peter Spring (2002)

    • 1888

      Princess May’s 21st birthday

      A gift from Richmond

      Photograph of Princess May in her phaeton; the pony and carriage were given to her as a 21st birthday gift from the people of Richmond, May 1888. The framed photograph is inscribed on the reverse: ‘This photo frame always stood in the Feather Bedroom at Ham House. It belonged to Katherine Lady Huntingtower.’ Photographer unknown. The Hearsum Collection PH0385  

    • 1888

      A simpler life at the Lodge

      Limited attempts at ‘frugality’

      Illustration from a photograph, reproduced in Supplement to The Graphic, 30 October 1897. L-R: Prince Alexander, The Duchess of Teck, The Duke of Teck, Prince Adolphus, Prince Francis, Princess Victoria ‘May’, The Duchess of York. From a photograph by Gunn and Stuart, Richmond. The Hearsum Collection DC0222  

    • 1888

      A secluded setting

      In Richmond Park

      Watercolour painting of White Lodge viewed from Pen Ponds, signed by the artist, R Richardson, and dated 14 April 1888. Royal Collection Trust / © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2018

    • 1888

      Servants at White Lodge

      A busy life ‘below stairs’

      A pencil drawing by Francis, Duke of Teck, showing a housemaid tending one of the fireplaces at White Lodge. Royal Collection Trust / © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2018

  • 1890s
    • 1890

      Assault in Richmond Park

      A servant attacked

      Copy of ‘the plan of Mr Adams’ route’: as a result of an attack made upon a White Lodge servant in Richmond Park, on 22 April 1890, the Metropolitan Police produced this diagram to prove that the incident did not take place on a public footpath and was not, therefore, their responsibility! The Hearsum Collection: MA0046 © The National Archives: HO 45/9696/A49825

    • 1890

      New Richmond Theatre

      A royal outing

      Entrance to the new Richmond Theatre on Richmond Green, designed by Frank Matcham and opened in 1899 as the Theatre Royal and Opera House (also known as Richmond Theatre). In 1890, therefore, the Tecks would have visited its predecessor, then located on the Thames riverside in the former banqueting rooms of the Castle Hotel. This building was demolished in 1984, and the site redeveloped by the architect, Quinlan Terry (source: www.richmond.gov.uk/media/6322/local-history-richmond-theatres). Photo: Verne Source: Wickimedia/commons

    • 1891

      Celebrations at White Lodge

      Silver Wedding Anniversary of the Tecks

      Illustration reproduced in The Illustrated London News, 20 June 1891, p 800, showing the reception held at White Lodge to celebrate the Silver Wedding Anniversary of the Duke and Duchess of Teck. Inset (top left) shows the presentation of speeches, or ‘addresses and testimonials’; and (top right) the gift of a fine cavalry horse, or charger, to the Duke. RBS/OBJ/WHI

    • 1892

      A tour of White Lodge, 1892

      The Teck Family apartments

      Floor plan illustrating the layout of rooms on the principal floor at White Lodge during the residency of the Teck Family. This copy of the plan was issued by the Lord Chamberlain’s Office, stamped and dated (top-left corner) 31 March 1905, although it appears to record the allocation of rooms around 1875, when Princess May was aged seven.  The plan shows that in the North Pavilion the Teck children occupied a ‘Night Nursery’ and a ‘Day Nursery’, and were tutored in the ‘School Room’. Royal Collection Trust / © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2018

    • 1892

      Death of Prince Albert, Duke of Clarence

      Tragedy for Princess May

      Photograph of Prince Albert Victor, Duke of Clarence and Avondale, 1891 – the year in which he was betrothed to Princess May. Photo: W & D Downey. Source: Wickimedia/commons

    • 1893

      Dowager Empress Frederick of Germany

      Matchmaking

      Portrait of the Princess Victoria, Princess Royal, as Crown Princess of Prussia. Painting by Franz Xaver Winterhalter, oil on canvas, 1867. The Royal Collection. Source: Wickimedia/commons

    • 1893

      Another marriage proposal

      Romance in Richmond Park

      Photograph of ‘Her Serene Highness, Princess Victoria Mary [‘May’] of Teck, reproduced in The Graphic, 30 January 1892, p 157. Photo: Reginald Walpole. The Hearsum Collection DC0358

    • 1893

      The wedding of Princess May

      Display of gifts at White Lodge

      Edward VII, seated on the right, taking tea in the Drawing Room of White Lodge, with Princess May (centre) and her parents, the Duke and Duchess of Teck. The King is shown making an informal family visit to his future daughter-in-law. Illustration by Thomas Walter Wilson, engraved and published by R Taylor and Co, c1893. Private Collection

    • 1894

      Princess May’s ‘charming retreat’

      Birthplace of Edward VIII

      Drawing of the infant Edward, Prince of Wales, later Edward VIII, better known to history as the Duke of Windsor, following his abdication in 1936. Inscribed with the initials of the artist, AFR, and the date in French:  ‘White Lodge, 20 Juillet [July] 1894’. Royal Collection Trust / © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2018

    • 1894

      The christening of Prince Edward

      Four generations of British monarchs

      Commemorative photograph of the Christening of Prince Edward at White Lodge, annotated with the date, 16 July 1894. One of a series of celebrated images of the occasion, known as ‘The Four Generations’, it shows the infant Edward, later The Duke of Windsor, on the lap of his great-grandmother, Queen Victoria; flanked by his grandfather, the Prince of Wales, later King Edward VII; and his father, the Duke of York, later King George V. The photograph was taken at the Southern end of the Long Gallery entrance vestibule. Photo: W & D Downey, London. Hearsum Collection PH0371A

    • 1897

      Two Princes in the garden

      ‘David and Bertie’

      Two future kings: White Lodge, August 1897. Prince Edward. Aged three (known to his family as David) later became Edward VIII (reigned January to December 1936), although he abdicated before his formal coronation. He is seen here playing in the gardens of White Lodge with his younger brother Prince Albert (or ‘Bertie’), aged two, who would later be crowned George VI (reigned 1937-1952). Royal Collection Trust / © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2018

    • 1897

      Death of the Duchess of Teck

      ‘Universally beloved’

      Painting showing the Duchess of Teck’s lying-in-state in the Drawing Room of White Lodge, signed by the artist, Pritchett, watercolour dated 1897. A housemaid can be seen keeping vigil. The window seat at the head of the coffin is located in the bay later converted into double-doors, which open onto the West-facing balcony built on to the main villa in 1922.  Royal Collection Trust / © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2018

  • 1900s
    • The Edwardian Period and the House of Windsor

    • 1901

      Mrs Eliza Emma Hartman

      On ‘intimate terms’ with the King

      Photograph of Emma Hartman, wearing a celebrated ‘choker’ necklace made from rare and perfectly-coloured aquamarines, which was a gift to her from Edward, when he was Prince of Wales. Date (pre-1910) and photographer unknown. Image source: Blog ‘The Court Jeweller’, written by Ella Kay, posted 27 March 2017

    • 1909

      Lord Farquhar

      Electricity reaches White Lodge

      Caricature of Horace Farquhar, Earl Farquhar by Leslie Ward, who was renowned under the pseudonym ‘Spy’. Published in Vanity Fair, 2 June 1898, the original lithograph was published by Vincent Brooks, Day & Son. This version is held in the City College of New York Collection. Source: Wickimedia/commons

    • 1909

      New map of Richmond Park, 1909

      Introducing motoring speed limits

      Map by Coryn de Vere (1909) showing features in the Richmond Park landscape surrounding White Lodge. Published by Knapp, Drewett & Sons Ltd, Kingston on Thames. The Hearsum Collection MA0044

  • 1910s
    • 1912

      The Imperial Ballet at Richmond Theatre

      Anna Pavlova dances ‘The Swan’

      Front cover of Dress and Vanity Fair magazine, featuring Anna Pavlova in Fokine’s Le Cygne, popularly called The Dying Swan, undated fragment. Pavlova’s Swan costume was designed for her by Léon Bakst. RBS/MOR/2/2

    • 1914

      Richmond Park and the First World War

      Top secret experiment on Pen Ponds

      Photograph captioned ‘The “Artists” Get Ready to Fight’: it shows the Second Battalion Artists’ Rifles, 28th Battalion the London Regiment, leaving Richmond Park for a route march, headed by their band, 1914. The regiment was one of several training in the Park, which became an armed camp during the First World War. The ‘Artists’ Battalion went on to fight in France in October 1914. Photographer unknown. The Hearsum Collection PR0220

    • 1917

      H G Wells and his ‘aerial ropeway’

      Famous author’s wartime invention

      Photograph showing measurements being taken during the construction and testing of the ‘Leeming’ Portable and Collapsible Aerial Ropeway, designed by H G Wells. Digital copy held at The Hearsum Collection © The National Archives MUN 5/198/1660/13

  • 1920s
    • 1922

      Albert Waterfield

      Civilian Medal for bravery

      Page from the Supplement to the London Gazette, 1 January 1923, p10. Half way down the left-hand column is an item recording that on 30 December 1922 the King approved the awarding of a medal for gallantry to ‘Albert Waterfield, Park-keeper, Richmond Park.’ Source: www.thegazette.co.uk/London/issue/32782/supplement/10/data.pdf

    • 1923

      The Duke and Duchess of York

      Newly-weds at White Lodge

      Portrait of the Duchess of York, neé Lady Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon (1900–2002) by the Hungarian artist, Philip de László. Painting in oils, 1925. Royal Collection Trust/All Rights Reserved

    • 1923

      No privacy for the Yorks

      ‘...hordes of sightseers’

      Page from a photograph album held in the Royal Collection, Windsor, annotated ‘White Lodge 1925’. Above: The Duke and Duchess of York on the exterior staircase leading from the Salon into the garden. Below: The family dog, seen with the Duke.  These informal snapshots were probably taken by the couple themselves. Royal Collection Trust/All Rights Reserved

    • 1924

      Prince Aleksander

      A second royal birth at White Lodge

      Photograph of Prince Paul of Yugoslavia and Princess Olga of Greece with their infant son, Prince Aleksander. Taken at White Lodge after the baby’s Christening. The Duke of York, then resident at White Lodge, had been the couple’s Best Man at their wedding. Photographer unknown. The Hearsum Collection PH0412

    • 1926

      Final chapter as a royal residence

      Two future Queens of Great Britain

      Photograph of the Duchess of York with the infant Princess Elizabeth in her lap; the young Duchess is seen sitting on the lower part of the exterior staircase of White Lodge, which leads from the Salon into the garden. Royal Collection Trust/All Rights Reserved

    • 1927

      ‘An impossible residence’

      Departure of the Duke and Duchess

      Reproduction of a poster design by Charles Sharland (1911) used by Transport for London to advertise the attractions of Richmond Park, which was in easy reach of both Richmond and Mortlake train stations. Similar posters advertised tram routes to Richmond Park. Published by Underground Electric Railways Company Limited. Printed by Waterlow & Sons Ltd. Lith. London Wall, London. RBS/OBJ/WHI

    • 1927

      Lord and Lady Lee

      New tenants of White Lodge

      Press photograph of the housewarming garden party at White Lodge, given by Lord and Lady Lee on 20 May 1929. The couple invited, as their special guests, many wounded soldiers, sailors and airmen who were veterans of WWI (1914-18), and possibly of the earlier Boer War (1899-1902). Print stamped on the reverse: The Times and Acme Newspictures. Photographer unknown. RBS/PHO/WL

    • 1927

      Sir Arthur Hamilton Lee

      Collector and patron of art

      Hand-drawn copy of an architectural drawing showing Lord Lee’s plan for a small private art gallery, which he had installed the upper floor of the main villa of White Lodge. Lee’s design included glass roofing to admit natural light; fabric wall coverings; ventilation and hanging systems. His scheme for the White Lodge gallery was published in Country Life, 8 September 1928. Drawing by Heloise Spring, 2017

    • 1929

      The Wall Street Crash

      Financial difficulties

      Reproduction of a news cutting from The Daily Mail, Continental Edition, Friday October 25 1929. The front page of the newspaper was headlined the ‘Greatest Crash in Wall Street’s History’, and reported that prices had tumbled ‘like an avalanche’. Source: www.history.com

  • 1930s
    • 1938

      Departure of the Lees

      Public sale of furniture

      Postcard of White Lodge, featuring a photograph of the great West Front. While the lawns appear to be well kept, and Italianate plant pots adorn the façade, the Crescent windows seem completely overgrown with foliage, indicating that the Wings were unoccupied. It is reasonable to speculate that economic constraints may have been the cause, and likely that the photograph dates to the latter part of Lord and Lady Lee’s residence (see images of the Lee’s housewarming party at the start of their tenancy for comparison). Photographer unknown. The Hearsum Collection PC0330

    • 1939

      Queen Mary at the ballet

      Sadler’s Wells Theatre

      Photograph of Dame Beryl Grey CH DBE. The famous dancer is pictured backstage, tying the ribbons of her pointe shoes, undated, c1940. Photo: P A Reuter © PA Images. RBS/PHO2/72

    • 1939

      Nora Reynolds Albertini

      Widow and extravagant society hostess

      Press photograph of Nora Reynolds Albertini, taken on 2 November 1936. The reverse of the print is annotated: ‘Threw swanky party; resented publication of cost Mrs. Nora Reynolds Albertini, wife of the American millionaire, Stockwell Reynolds Albertini, pictured on her way to court in London, where she brought action recently, against a British publication, which printed a story describing a party given by her. The party cost about $5,000 spent for costly foods and 600 bottles of champagne for 500 guests. The court held that the article Mrs. Albertini charged was libellous, was an honest comment of public interest.’ So Mrs. Albertini lost her case! RBS/PHO/WL

  • 1940s
    • 1940

      Marble bust of Princess Amelia

      Lord Lee’s antique at White Lodge

      Marble bust of Princess Amelia Sophia Eleanor, second daughter of George II, by Louis Francois Roubialiac, c1740. Collection of the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge. Source: www.bathartandarchitecture.blogspot.co.uk

       

    • 1940

      The Blitz

      Bomb decoys near White Lodge

      Detail of an aerial photograph of Richmond Park c1941, showing White Lodge (top left) lying perilously close to the ‘Starfish’ decoys visible to the immediate right of the Lodge, which appear as circular shapes in the landscape. These were lit up at night as decoys to prevent bomb damage to the town centres of Kingston, Sheen, Twickenham and Richmond which surrounded the Park. The Hearsum Collection PH0421. By permission of Historic England Archive (USAAF Photography)

    • 1941

      ‘Phantom’ Regiment

      Covert Operations in Richmond Park

      Photograph of the Duke of Kent inspecting the Phantom Regiment, 1941. Annotated with the names of those in the foreground, L-R: ‘Hoppy’, David Niven, (‘A’ Squ[adron], The Duke of Kent. Photographer unknown. Digital copy from an original held by Colonel D T W Gibson c2006. The Hearsum Collection PH0057

    • 1942

      Richmond Park research

      Astronomical discovery of Cygnus A

      Multi-wavelength composite photograph of Cygnus A, the most powerful radio galaxy near Earth, which was first detected by Stanley Hey during World War Two. Using Army aerials based in Richmond Park, Hey initially spotted the radiation from the exploding galaxy 600 million light-years away. This image incorporates X-ray data, seen in blue (credit: NASA/CXC/SAO); and radio emissions, seen in red (credit: NSF/NRAO/AUI/VLA); as well as optical wavelength data, seen in yellow (credit: NASA/STScI). Source: https://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap150124.html

    • 1942

      The Royal Air Force at White Lodge

      White Lodge is requisitioned

      Postcard sent from White Lodge, dated 17 January 1944, to Scotland. Philip Duncan was a member of the Royal Air Force (RAF); he writes to tell Mr Duncan that he will remain based at White Lodge until 29 January before going to Worcester for three weeks. The Hearsum Collection PC0743

  • 1950s
    • 1952

      Marshal Tito

      President of Yugoslavia

      Front cover of a biography of Marshal Tito of Yugoslavia by Michael Padev (London: Muller, 1944). The image shows Tito in the heroic style often used to depict Communist leaders. The suite of rooms in which he stayed at White Lodge in 1953 is still called ‘Tito’ and was for many years used as school dormitories. Photo: Fiona McNaught RBS/PHO(History Booklet)

    • 1953

      Search for a new tenant

      A new future for White Lodge

      Photograph of the Salon at White Lodge, c1953. The parquet floor, elaborate wall covering (silk or paper), and large crystal chandelier (which appears to hold candles, but may also be wired for electricity), were all eventually removed to create a ballet studio for The Royal Ballet School. RBS/PHO/8

    • The Royal Ballet School at White Lodge

    • 1954

      Sadler’s Wells Ballet School

      A new lease of life

      Photograph of the West façade of White Lodge with young students of the Sadler’s Wells Ballet School running into the garden c1956. At that time, most of the pupils were girls, although since the early 1990s there has been an equal number of girls and boys in the School. Photographer unknown. RBS/PHO/6/10

    • 1955

      White Lodge becomes home to the School

      Early days and a mishap!

      Photograph of the East façade of White Lodge with young students of the Sadler’s Wells Ballet School dancing in the front garden c1957. At that time, most of the pupils were girls, although for many years since there has been an equal number of girls and boys in the School. Photo: Chris Ware. RBS/PHO/4/6

    • 1956

      The Royal Ballet School

      Awarding of a Royal Charter

      The Royal Charter, awarded by HM Queen Elizabeth II to The Royal Ballet School and Companies on 31 October 1956, incorporating the Coat of Arms of The Royal Ballet © Royal Opera House. By kind permission ROH Collections.

    • 1957

      The grand opening

      Dame Margot Fonteyn

      Photograph of Margot Fonteyn in the East Portico entrance to White Lodge, with the School’s Chairman of Governors, Viscount Lord Soulbury. Dame Margot presided at the official opening of White Lodge on 31 July 1957, a festive occasion on which the building was opened to the public. Photographer unknown. RBS/PHO/4

    • 1957

      Princess Margaret at White Lodge

      The Anna Pavlova ballet studio

      Photograph of HRH The Princess Margaret being welcomed to White Lodge by Viscount Soulbury, Chairman of the School Governors. On 19 July 1957, The Princess was guest of honour at the opening of the ‘Anna Pavlova Memorial Hall’, the first purpose-built ballet studio installed by The Royal Ballet School at White Lodge. Photo: Richmond and Twickenham Times (print is stamped ‘proof’). RBS/PHO/7/3/2(1)

    • 1957

      Click here to see more about the history of The Royal Ballet School

The King’s Great New Park

Richmond, Surrey

Map of 1610 drawn by John Speed, entitled ‘Surrey described and divided into hundreds’. The map is labelled: ‘described by the travills [travels/efforts] of John Norden and augme[n]ted and performed by John Speede’. The great Tudor Palaces of Richmond and Nonsuch are illustrated; the map inset shows the area near Richmond Palace to be enclosed as a Royal Park.  The Hearsum Collection MA0057

Richmond Park was established in its current form by Charles I, who had brought his court to Richmond Palace in 1625 to escape an outbreak of plague in London. The land on the hill above Richmond was turned into a royal hunting ground for red and fallow deer.  In 1637, Charles I enclosed the Park with high brick walls, while allowing pedestrians the right-of-way.

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George I

A ‘Shooting Box’ for the King

Aquatinted print of White Lodge, showing the earliest known image of ‘His Majesty’s Villa in Richmond Park’, during the reign of George II (1727–1760). The Lodge was originally a simple box-shaped villa set directly in the hunting ground of Richmond Park, with no enclosed gardens. The King’s and Queen’s Pavilions, later placed on either side of the central villa, were not constructed until the 1760s. Royal Collection Trust / © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2018

Commissioned in 1725 as a hunting lodge for George I (1660–1727), White Lodge was constructed over the period c1727 to 1729. The designs for the King’s ‘shooting box’ are attributed to a collaboration between the architect, Roger Morris and Henry Lord Herbert, 10th Earl of Pembroke. The King died shortly after work began, making George II (1683–1760) the first royal resident.

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Portrait of George I after Sir Godfrey Kneller, oil on copper, c1714. NPG 488 © National Portrait Gallery

George Ludwig, Elector of Hanover (1660–1727) was crowned King George I of Great Britain and Ireland in 1714. The first Hanoverian King, he heralded a new age for the British Monarchy. However, George missed his native Hanover, returning there frequently throughout his reign. He spoke very little English, making him unpopular with his subjects, and had a brusque, shy character. Despite this, he worked successfully within the principles of the 1688 Glorious Revolution, which had decreed the supremacy of parliament over the monarchy. Under his leadership, the Hanoverian succession was made secure in Great Britain.

 

George I’s personal life was troubled. He left his wife imprisoned in Germany as punishment for being unfaithful, and was accompanied to England by his two mistresses: a short, dumpy one, and another known as ‘the Maypole’, because she was so tall and thin – together, they were rudely nicknamed the ‘Elephant and Castle’, after an area in London. Prince George (the future George II) resented this treatment of his mother and the relationship between father and son deteriorated throughout George I’s reign.

 

George I had a passion for hunting and Richmond Park provided a rare opportunity to pursue deer within the reach of Kensington or St James’ Palaces.

George II and Henrietta Howard

White Lodge and Marble Hill House

The elevation of Marble Hill House in Twickenham, London, commissioned by Henrietta Howard, and designed by Colen Campbell with Henry Lord Herbert, later 9th Earl of Pembroke; built by Roger Morris between 1724 and 1729. First published in Vitruvius Britannicus, Volume III, 1725. Lord Herbert and Roger Morris (possibly assisted by Colen Campbell and Lord Burlington) simultaneously collaborated on the design and construction of White Lodge in Richmond Park. Republished by Dover Publications Inc. USA (2006)

George I died suddenly in the summer of 1727, so George II and Queen Caroline became the first royal occupants of White Lodge. In Twickenham nearby, Marble Hill House, a Palladian villa built between 1724 and 1729, was occupied by George II’s former mistress, the remarkable Henrietta Howard. Marble Hill House and White Lodge were built almost simultaneously and shared the same architects.

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Portrait of George II by Charles Philips, oil on canvas, c1738.  This appears to be a charmingly informal portrait, showing a domestic interior with two small dogs playing at the King’s feet. However, it is thought to have been painted shortly after the death of his wife, Queen Caroline, whose marble bust can be seen above the door. The empty throne may also symbolise the loss of his consort. In spite of keeping a mistress, the King was genuinely fond of his wife. The setting is thought to be the anteroom to the new library in St James’ Palace, where the Queen had been taken ill. By kind permission Marble Hill House © Historic England Archive

George II (1683–1760) resentfully waited to be king for many years while his father ruled. When he was finally crowned in 1727, it was to the music of Handel’s Zadok the Priest, composed especially for the coronation.

 

In 1705, George married Caroline of Ansbach. Despite his infidelities, he was devoted to his wife and they had eight children. His relationship with his eldest son, Frederick, Prince of Wales was as difficult and sour as that with his own father. Frederick was eventually banished from court in 1737.

 

Remembered as boorish and ill-tempered, George II nevertheless breathed new life into the Hanoverian court, and Kensington Palace became the glittering centre of court life. The chief pleasure of the royal party during the day was hunting. The King’s mistress, Henrietta Howard wrote to John Gay: ‘We hunt with great noice [sic], and violence, and have every day a very tolerable chance to have a neck broke.’ (British Museum Add. MSS) George II was, therefore, a frequent visitor to White Lodge following a day’s sport.

Sir Robert Walpole

Prime Minister and keen huntsman

Artist’s impression of an early image of White Lodge, showing the East entrance. This drawing shows that a causeway originally enabled access to the back of the building, which was built on a sloping bank. The causeway had distinctive features, which were often employed by the architect, Roger Morris, namely ‘oculi below it, and free-standing ringed columns…at its end’ (Hewlings, 2009). The original pen and wash drawing by Augustin Heckel was referenced in Robert Walpole’s Aedes Walpolianae, first published in 1747 (and in several subsequent editions).  Drawing by Heloise Spring, 2017

Sir Robert Walpole (1676–1745), First Lord of the Treasury, was appointed Deputy Ranger of Richmond Park in 1727. His son, Lord Robert Walpole (1701–1751), who had been made Ranger, surrendered the privileges of his office to his father. Sir Robert’s instruction ‘to furnish the new Lodge in New Park’ in February 1728 suggests that Walpole regarded White Lodge as his own (Hewlings, 2009).

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Portrait of Robert Walpole, First Earl of Orford, by Sir Godfrey Kneller, oil on canvas, c1710–15. NPG 3220 © National Portrait Gallery

Sir Robert Walpole (1676–1745), First Lord of the Treasury, is recognised as Britain’s first Prime Minister (although the term was not officially used until 1905); he remained in office for 20 years, until 1742. This made his administration the longest in British History. From a Norfolk gentry family, Walpole was educated at Eton and Cambridge before becoming MP for Castle Rising.

 

Over his distinguished career, Walpole set a precedent for how best to establish an effective working relationship between the Crown and Parliament. Walpole was a close friend of Queen Caroline and had considerable personal influence with George II.

 

Walpole’s first marriage to Catherine Mordaunt was not a happy one. Richmond Park, therefore, also proved to be an ideal retreat where he could spend time with one of his numerous mistresses, Maria Skerrett. The political memoirist, Lord Hervey, described it as Walpole’s ‘bower of bliss’ (a mischievous reference to the Bower of Bliss episode in Spenser’s famous poem, The Faerie Queene (1590-96), see Hervey, 1848 ed).

Caroline of Ansbach

The Queen’s favourite residence

Painting of deer sheltering among veteran oak trees in Richmond Park, with White Lodge in the distance, by a local Richmond artist, James Isaiah Lewis (c1861 – 1934). The painting shows the Western approach to the Lodge, known to this day as ‘The Queen’s Ride’. The Hearsum Collection PR0166

White Lodge was particularly favoured by Queen Caroline (1683–1737), the consort of George II. The oak and sweet chestnut tree-lined approach to the West front of the Lodge, known as ‘The Queen’s Ride’, is named after her.

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Portrait of Queen Caroline of Ansbach with her third and youngest son, Prince William, later Duke of Cumberland, c1730. It was quite usual at the time to dress small boys in clothes that we would now regard as feminine. Oil on canvas, artist unknown. Ionides Collection, by kind permission Orleans House Gallery LBRUT

Caroline, Princess of Brandenburg-Ansbach and Electoral Princess of Hanover (1683–1737), married the future George II in 1705. A committed Lutheran, she became involved in political manoeuvrings to ensure a Protestant succession to the British Crown. In 1714, the Elector of Hanover became King George I of Great Britain and Caroline moved to England as Princess of Wales.

 

On her husband’s accession to the throne in 1727, Queen Caroline revealed a great enthusiasm for gardening. She employed Charles Bridgeman to create extensive gardens for her summer residence, Richmond Lodge. The gardens included a number of exotic plants and trees including orange trees, pomegranates, nut trees, myrtles and bay trees. Caroline was a strong supporter of the new fashion for gardening in a more ‘natural’ style. Two buildings designed by William Kent were added to the landscape: a hermitage, and ‘Merlin’s cave’. Both were intended to promote the English identity of the new Hanoverian dynasty and are now encompassed by Kew Gardens.

English Palladian Villa

An ‘Arcadian’ vista

Photograph of the view from White Lodge towards Pen Ponds. In the foreground, trees frame a distant view of the Ponds, where water reflects the foliage and sky. These natural features were essential attributes of the Arcadian vistas so beloved of the 18th century gentry in England. They were inspired by the ‘Classical landscape’ paintings of Claude Lorraine. Photo: Brian Slater. RBS/PHO/WL(12 May 2014)

The view of Richmond Park to the West of White Lodge shows Pen Ponds in the distance, framed by trees. Possibly created for Princess Amelia, the Ponds were formerly gravel pits, and took their name from a nearby deer pen (Collenette, 1937). Seen from the Salon windows at White Lodge, the reflective water appears as the focal point of an ideal ‘Arcadian’ vista.

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Princess Amelia

The Richmond Park affair

Aquatinted print of Richmond Park showing the breaching of the Park walls by the ‘bound-beating party’, on 16 May 1751. The image first appeared as the frontispiece for an anonymous volume, possibly written by John Lewis, Two Historical Accounts of the Making – New Forest in Hampshire…and Richmond New Park in Surry [sic] (London: M Baxter Brown, 1751). Digital copy held at The Hearsum Collection

Princess Amelia Sophia Eleanora (1711–1786), the eldest unmarried daughter of George II, succeeded as Ranger of Richmond Park on Lord Robert Walpole’s death in 1751. The post brought her notoriety when she attempted to close the Park to the public in order to seek more privacy. Amelia made frequent use of White Lodge, although her main residence in the Park (1751-1761) was the neighbouring Old Lodge (Collenette, 1937).

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Portrait of Princess Amelia Sophia Eleanora, by John Faber Junior, after Hans Hysing, mezzotint, c1750.  NPG D7958 © National Portrait Gallery

Princess Amelia Sophia Eleanor (1711–1786) was described as ‘one of the oddest princesses that was ever known…’. She was said to have ‘her ears shut to flattery and her heart open to honesty’ as well as ‘honour, justice, good nature, sense, wit and resolution’ (Van der Kiste, 1997). At the age of 19 she was described as ‘very beautiful’ and was, reportedly, something of a flirt. She developed a particular friendship with the Duke of Grafton and would frequently go hunting with him, riding away from the rest of the party. At Windsor, their attendants lost them altogether and they did not return until long after dark.

 

Amelia enjoyed fishing and loved horses. Even when she was over 40 she was still capable of shocking the ‘good women’ at Hampton Court by attending chapel on Sunday ‘in riding clothes with a dog under her arm’ (Van der Kiste, 1997).

Building work at White Lodge

Enlargement and decoration

Page from Colen Campbell’s Vitruvius Brittanicus or The British Architect, Fourth Edition (London: Woolfe and Gandon, 1767); this expanded issue included new designs by John Woolfe and James Gandon. Elevation showing the West façade of White Lodge, and the ground level passageways leading from the main villa to the Pavilions on either side. By kind permission of Peter Wilson

Princess Amelia spent nearly £2,000 (equivalent to around £180,000 today) completing and decorating the interiors of White Lodge between 1751–52. This included new plaster cornices, new doors and shutters, five marble chimneypieces and, most importantly, the principal cantilevered torsional Portland stone staircase. Two flanking wing pavilions for the house were also commissioned.

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Richmond Park, 1754

Engraving of John Eyre’s map

Map entitled ‘A Plan of His Majesty’s New Park at Richmond in Surrey’ by Edward John Eyre (1754), showing White Lodge (identified by its original name of New Lodge) with the pavilions and curved linking corridors already in place. Facsimile published by Whiteman and Bass, date unknown. The Hearsum Collection MA0041

Edward John Eyre’s map of Richmond Park was drawn up in September 1754. ‘New Lodge’ is identified in the South East corner of the map; this was the name by which White Lodge was originally known, to avoid confusion with the Park’s ‘Old Lodge’ (demolished by 1841). The two new curved (or ‘crescent’) wings of White Lodge are clearly illustrated.

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John Stuart, Earl of Bute

A misunderstood politician

Portrait of John Stuart, 3rd Earl of Bute, by Allan Ramsay, oil on canvas, 1758. The painting is annotated in the bottom right-hand corner with painted lettering, recording his public offices and his rank as a Knight of the Thistle and of the Garter. The National Gallery of Scotland

John Stuart, 3rd Earl of Bute (1713–1792) was appointed Ranger of the Park by George III in 1761 and took up residence at White Lodge following Princess Amelia’s departure. Said to have been tall, slim and very handsome, ‘Jack Boot’ was a teacher, mentor and close friend of George III, who frequented the Lodge. Bute served as Prime Minister from May 1762 to April 1763.

Portrait of John Stuart, 3rd Earl of Bute, by Sir Joshua Reynolds, oil on canvas, 1773. NPG 3939 © National Portrait Gallery

John Stuart, 3rd Earl of Bute (1713–1792) was deeply unpopular. As both a Scot and chief advisor to George III, he was the subject of considerable hatred and gossip. He was suspected of harbouring Jacobite sympathies and his influence always carried the suspicion of treachery. It was a slander that the learned and dour Bute did little to deserve. As well as being a misunderstood politician, Bute was passionate about books, botany and architecture. He made a very positive contribution to 18th century learning as a botanist, collector and student of natural history.

 

From 1747, with the support of Augusta, widow of Frederick, Prince of Wales, and later Queen Charlotte, consort of George III, he was instrumental in the establishment of the gardens at Kew. In 1784, Lord Bute presented Queen Charlotte with his privately printed Nine Volumes of Botanical Tables. Only nine copies were produced and the Queen declared herself to be ‘much flattered to be thought capable of so rational, beautiful and enticing Amusement’ (in her written acceptance of Bute’s dedication. See Lazarus & Pardoe, 2011).

Bute as Ranger of Richmond Park

The end of stag hunting for sport

 

An early 17th century painting by an unknown artist, entitled ‘Nonsuch Palace’. It depicts a stag hunt on horseback with hounds, a sport relished by the nobility. Nonsuch Palace, seen in the background, was dismantled between 1682-3 by Barbara Countess of Castlemaine, a mistress of Charles II. She sold the building materials in order to settle her gambling debts. Nonsuch Palace was originally commissioned by Henry VIII, and lay in the County of Surrey, in which Richmond Park is also situated. © The Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge

Bute’s collaboration with the royal family at Kew extended to the management of Richmond Park. In 1761, repairs (both to the Park infrastructure and White Lodge itself) were carried out under King George III’s personal supervision at a cost of £6,000 (equivalent to around £500,000 today). The King also decreed an end to stag-hunting; henceforth the deer were, apart from their ornamental role, to be regarded as a source of venison rather than of sport.

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Princess Caroline Matilda

A marriage alliance made at White Lodge

Portrait of Queen Caroline Mathilde of Denmark, with her sister, Princess Louise of Great Britain, by Frances Cotes, oil on canvas, 1767. Caroline is shown standing beside her seated sister, Louisa, who was still only 16 years old when this portrait was painted. Held in The Royal Collection, Windsor. Source: Wickimedia/commons

In 1768, Christian VII of Denmark visited George III at White Lodge. The eccentric King of England entertained the equally unstable King of Denmark as a prelude to Christian VII’s proposal of diplomatic marriage to George III’s youngest sister, Princess Caroline Matilda. Unfortunately, Christian VII of Denmark proved to be a most unpleasant husband.

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‘...they are always at White Lodge on a Sunday...’

First reference to ‘White Lodge’

Double portrait of Queen Sophia Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz and King George III, by George Noble, line engraving, published 1787. NPG D10816 © National Portrait Gallery

The first known reference to the house as ‘White Lodge’ was made in 1768. In her journal, Lady Mary Coke wrote on Sunday 24 July, ‘we return’d home by Richmond Park and went past both the Lodges, but saw nothing of their Majestys, th’o [sic] they are always at White Lodge on a Sunday, that the Gardens at Richmond may be open’ (Coke, 1889 ed.).

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The Royal Family at Kew

The Royal Botanic Gardens

Portrait of Frederick, Prince of Wales, and his sisters, by Philip Mercier, oil on canvas, 1733.  The 26 year-old Prince is depicted playing the cello accompanied by three of his younger sisters: Anne, The Princess Royal aged 24, is at the harpsichord; The Princess Caroline, aged 20, is plucking a Mandora (a form of lute); while The Princess Amelia, aged 22, reads from the work of John Milton. Kew Palace can be seen in the background. NPG 1556 © National Portrait Gallery. Source: Wickimedia/commons

White Lodge was one of a network of royal palaces in the local area of Richmond and Kew, including Kew Palace, Richmond Lodge and ‘The White House’ (not to be confused with White Lodge). Lord Bute’s residency closely connects White Lodge to the creation of Kew Gardens at The White House. This link was maintained when George III and Queen Charlotte made The White House their country home in 1772.

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White Lodge in disrepair

Neglect and dilapidation

An underground cold store-room dating to the 1750s, which was covered c1816 by earth banked against the East-facing side of both quadrant corridors of White Lodge. These store-rooms are known as ‘the beehives’ because of their distinctive domed ceilings. They are particularly difficult to maintain due to their subterranean location, and give a strong indication of the ‘dilapidation’ that would rapidly ensue if all parts of the building were not constantly maintained. Photo: Katie Davison. RBS/PHO/WL(2017)

It seems that White Lodge was left to moulder and decay during the 1780s. There are no recorded building works for this decade and it is not until 1791 that anything appears to have been done to halt the dilapidation. In his latter years Lord Bute may have been too preoccupied with his botanical studies to pay attention to the buildings.

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George III in Richmond Park

Renovation and restoration

Portrait of King George III in his coronation robes, by Allan Ramsay, oil on canvas, c1765. Art Gallery of South Australia (Accession Number 0.561). Source: Wickimedia/commons

George III (1738–1820) made himself Ranger of Richmond Park following the death of Lord Bute in March 1792. White Lodge had fallen into a degree of disrepair and the King oversaw considerable improvements to both the Lodge and the Park. It was during the 1790s that the new gates and a lodge at the Richmond Gate were constructed.

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Henry Addington

A ‘middle class’ Prime Minister

Portrait of Henry Addington, First Viscount Sidmouth, by Sir William Beechey, oil on canvas, 1803.  Painted at the time he was Prime Minister (1801–04).  NPG 5774 © National Portrait Gallery

In 1801, George III assigned White Lodge to Henry Addington, later Viscount Sidmouth, as a ‘grace and favour’ residence. Addington, who served as Prime Minister from 1801 to 1804, remained at the Lodge until his death in 1844. There, he entertained some of the most distinguished men of the age including William Pitt, Richard Brinsley Sheridan, Sir Walter Scott and Viscount Horatio Nelson.

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Portrait of Henry Addington, First Viscount Sidmouth (1757–1844), by George Richmond, watercolour, 1833. Painted when he was around 76 years of age. NPG 05 © National Portrait Gallery

Henry Addington, first Viscount Sidmouth (1757–1844), was a major figure of early 19th century politics. He was born in 1757 to Anthony Addington, a physician, and his wife, Mary. The Addingtons belonged to the minor gentry. Educated at Oxford University, Addington trained as a lawyer before becoming a member of parliament in 1784. He was acclaimed for his abilities as a rhetorician and restored the prestige of the office of Speaker in the House of Commons.

 

Addington served as Prime Minister from 1801 to 1804, during which time the King granted him possession of White Lodge. Despite notable achievements in foreign policy, finance, and national defence, Addington’s government became increasingly vulnerable after the declaration of war on Napoleon in 1802. These anxieties turned politicians against Addington, who was belittled as ‘the Doctor’ on account of his comparatively middle-class background. However, achieving high office through his talents and despite his relatively modest origins, he marked a change in the social dynamics of British political life.

Queen Charlotte and the Princesses

A royal rendezvous

Aquatinted print by J Gendall depicting White Lodge: ‘The New Lodge, Richmond Park, the Seat of Viscount Sidmouth’. Plate 18, Volume 4; No 22 of Ackermann’s Repository of Arts.  Published 1 October 1824. The Hearsum Collection PR0156

George III, accompanied by Queen Charlotte and the six Princesses (Charlotte, the Princess Royal, and the Princesses Augusta, Elizabeth, Mary, Sophia and Amelia), arranged to meet Addington and his family at White Lodge on 13 June 1801, eager to show them the splendidly renovated buildings, which were to become their new home.

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‘Social spirit’ of Addington’s White Lodge

A valued and faithful servant

Print of the ‘New Lodge at Richmond Park – Seat of Viscount Sidmouth’, undated (c1801–44). Artist unknown. The Hearsum Collection DC0144

Henry Addington, his wife, Ursula Mary and their six children eventually moved into White Lodge on 15 October 1802. The extensive repairs and alterations made to White Lodge at the King’s own expense were a mark of his extreme favour. The eminent men and women who visited White Lodge during the Addingtons’ residency described it as a ‘hospitable house’, and ‘decorously gay’ with a ‘social spirit’.  

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William Pitt ‘the Younger’

A political rival

Caricature by James Gillray entitled ‘Britannia between Death and the Doctor’s – Death may decide when Doctor’s [sic] disagree’. This satirical drawing shows a fainting Britannia with three ‘doctors’: William Pitt (the Younger) kicks the departing Prime Minister, Henry Addington, out of the door, while stepping on another rival politician, Charles James Fox.  The figure of death, wearing Napoleon’s hat, threatens Britannia. Hand-coloured etching. Published by H Humphrey, 20 May 1804. Source: Library of Congress, Prints & Photographs Division, LC-USZC4-8794. Wikimedia/commons

William Pitt ‘the Younger’ (1759–1806) served as Prime Minister immediately before and after Henry Addington. He was one of many notable statesmen to frequent White Lodge during Addington’s residency. As Chancellor of the Exchequer, Pitt visited twice in January 1803, to offer Addington help and guidance over the finances of Great Britain in the face of Napoleon’s renewed and continuing aggression.

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Humphry Repton

A garden for White Lodge

Aquatinted print of a garden design by Humphry Repton, depicting the West Front of White Lodge, before the gardens were enclosed against the deer and cattle, which then roamed freely around the Lodge. The diagonal lines which are visible in the image are caused by two flaps; these open to reveal Repton’s proposed garden transformation (see next image). Published by J Taylor, 1 February 1816. The Hearsum Collection PR0221

In 1805, Humphry Repton (1752–1818), the great English landscape designer, was called in to transform the five-acre plot of land granted by the King into a private garden for White Lodge. Up until this date the house had sat directly in the Park, as befitted its original function as a hunting lodge, and had no gardens enclosed against the deer and grazing cattle.

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Admiral Lord Nelson

Plotting the Battle of Trafalgar

Postcard featuring a painting by A D McCormick R I, c1923. A depiction of Lord Nelson visiting Henry Addington, Lord Sidmouth, at White Lodge in Richmond Park, on 10 September 1805: drawing on a tablecloth with his finger dipped in Port wine, Nelson outlined his plan to engage and break the Franco-Spanish line, a strategy he would carry out at the fateful Battle of Trafalgar, 21 October 1805. The painter has imagined the room at White Lodge rather fancifully, but the representation of the table is entirely accurate. It still exists in a private collection; a brass plaque affixed to the table c1805 records its provenance. Image by kind permission of the Sidmouth Family

Lord Horatio Nelson (1758–1805), visited White Lodge to dine as Addington’s guest on Tuesday 10 September 1805, just five days before he set sail for Cadiz, near Cape Trafalgar off the Spanish coast. In the dining room he plotted out his forthcoming naval campaign on a side-table, using the fruit and silver for ships, and writing on the cloth with his finger dipped in Port wine.

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The Battle of Trafalgar

Nelson’s crowning and final victory

Portrait of Admiral Horatio Nelson by Lemuel Francis Abbott, oil on canvas, 1797. NPG 394 © National Portrait Gallery

On 21 October 1805, the Battle of Trafalgar would destroy once and for all Napoleon’s chance of invading Britain. Tragically, in his hour of victory, Nelson was fatally wounded. At every level of society, the news of Nelson’s death was received as a personal grief, and at White Lodge the table in the dining room became a relic. The room is called the ‘Nelson Room’ to this day.

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Princess Elizabeth

Addington made her Deputy Ranger

Portrait enamel of Princess Elizabeth, Landgravine of Hesse Homburg (1770 – 1840), third daughter of King George III, after a drawing by Henry Edridge ARA; the enamel itself was painted by Henry Bone RA in December 1810. The frame was incorrectly inscribed when the creation date on the counter-enamel was misunderstood as being Princess Elizabeth’s birthdate. Image source: Philip Mould and Company, Pall Mall, London

Princess Elizabeth (1770–1840), the third daughter of George III, appointed Addington as the Deputy Ranger of Richmond Park in 1813. The Princess herself was made the Ranger by the Prince Regent (later George IV) in May 1814. Elizabeth continued to hold the honorary post after her marriage to Prince Friedrich of Hesse-Homburg in 1818.

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Duke of Wellington

Defeat of Napoleon

Portrait of Arthur Wellesley, the 1st Duke of Wellington by Thomas Lawrence, oil on canvas, c1815–16.  Apsley House, the Wellington Museum, London. Ref WM1567-1948. Source: Wickimedia/commons

On 18 June 1815, Napoleon was finally defeated at the Battle of Waterloo by a pan-European alliance led by the Duke of Wellington (1769–1852). Addington had a lengthy and continuous correspondence with the Duke who often visited White Lodge. When victory was announced, Addington declared ‘I will not rob myself one moment’s enjoyment of this glorious night’ (Pellew, 1947).

Richard Brinsley Sheridan

Playwright and politician

Aquatinted print by J Gendall depicting ‘Richmond Park Entrance, as seen from within the Park’. The image gives a vivid impression of Richmond Park as a leisure ground, at the time when Richard Sheridan and other celebrated friends of Lord Sidmouth’s were his frequent guests in the Park. Published by R Ackermann’s Repository of Arts, the Strand, London (1819). The Hearsum Collection PR0209

Richard Brinsley Sheridan (1751–1816), the famous actor, playwright, and Manager of Drury Lane Theatre from 1776 to 1809, enjoyed a close friendship with Henry Addington. Sheridan was a frequent visitor at White Lodge in the years leading up to his death in July 1816.

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Portrait of Richard Brinsley Sheridan from a crayon drawing by John Russell, c1788. Reproduced in Joseph Knight (ed), The Dramatic Works of Richard Brinsley Sheridan (Oxford: Henry Frowde, 1906).  Source: Wickimedia/commons

Richard Brinsley Sheridan (1751–1816), was born in Dublin, educated at Harrow, and, in 1770, moved with his family to Bath. There, Sheridan fell in love with Elizabeth Ann Linley, a strikingly beautiful young soprano. In order to avoid the unwanted attentions of a Welsh squire, Thomas Mathews of Llandaff, Elizabeth decided to take refuge in a French nunnery. Sheridan accompanied her to Lille and, after fighting two duels with Mathews, he married Elizabeth in 1773.

 

Sheridan turned to the theatre for a livelihood. He began to enjoy success as a playwright, known particularly for The Rivals (1775) and The School for Scandal (1777), which are considered to be among the greatest ‘comedy of manners’ plays written in English.

 

Shortly after the Drury Lane Theatre opened under Sheridan’s management in 1776, Sheridan entered Parliament as the ally of the Whig giant, Charles James Fox. Recognised as one of the most persuasive orators of his time, Sheridan was, however, considered an unreliable intriguer. Fox was livid when Sheridan offered support to Henry Addington’s Tory administration.

Sir Walter Scott

A Scottish gathering

Sir Walter Scott (1771–1832), by Henry Raeburn, oil on canvas 1822. Scottish National Gallery. Ref PG1286. Source: Wickimedia/commons

A memorable and lively gathering took place at White Lodge on 24 May 1828. Henry Addington, Lord Sidmouth, invited a party of Scottish friends to meet Sir Walter Scott (1771–1832), the eminent Romantic novelist. Scott was a lifelong friend; he and Sidmouth are known to have corresponded throughout their adult lives and Scott occasionally stayed at White Lodge.

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Queen Victoria

A new era

Portrait of the young Queen Victoria (b1819, r1837 – 1901) by W Warman, after a painting by Thomas Sully. Watercolour, 1838. NPG 1891a © National Portrait Gallery

On William IV’s death in June 1837, Victoria became Queen of Great Britain and Ireland at the tender age of 18. Victoria would fondly recall many visits to White Lodge during the course of her life: not only did she install her favourite aunt there, followed by a cousin and later her son, but she also gave a great Prima Ballerina cause to visit White Lodge.

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‘Poor Tom’

A folk song learnt at White Lodge

Words of a traditional folk song, entitled ‘Poor Tom’, transcribed by Geoffrey Arkwright. Printed in the Journal of the Folk-Song Society 1 (3), ‘Songs from the Collection of W. P. Merrick’ (1901), p 7. Illustrations: Rice Bunting bird, drawn by A Bowen (1848) and a decorative border, unattributed.  Source: reusableart.com

The words and tune of the folk song, ‘Poor Tom’, were recorded by a Mr Godfrey Arkwright in the 1901 edition of the Journal of the Folk-Song Society. His mother was the niece of Henry Addington, Lord Sidmouth. She had visited White Lodge in 1837, where Lady Sidmouth’s Scottish maid taught her the quaint old song.

Mary, Duchess of Gloucester

Death of Lord Sidmouth

Portrait of Princess Mary, Duchess of Gloucester and Edinburgh, the 11th and last surviving child of George III, by Joseph Epenetus Coombs, after Sir Thomas Lawrence, mezzotint and stipple engraving, published 1841. NPG D8018 © National Portrait Gallery

Henry Addington, Lord Sidmouth, died at White Lodge aged 86 on 15 February 1844. The Lodge next passed to Queen Victoria’s favourite aunt, the last surviving child of George III, Princess Mary, Duchess of Gloucester (1776–1857). In November 1851, Queen Victoria appointed the elderly Princess Mary as Ranger of the Park, which was evidently still a desirable sinecure.

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The Prince of Wales

 Exam preparation at White Lodge

Portrait of the young Edward, Prince of Wales by George Richmond, pastel, 1858. NPG 5217 © National Portrait Gallery

Edward, Prince of Wales (1841–1910) was installed at White Lodge with his tutors in the spring of 1858, as he prepared for a military exam. Queen Victoria somewhat bluntly described her eldest son: ‘his nose is becoming a true Coburg nose and begins to hang a little, but there remains, unfortunately, the want of a chin’ (Lee, 1927).

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Seclusion at White Lodge

The profligate son

This delightful picture of a Victorian picnic (c1860) indicates that there were some amusing diversions to be had, even in the remote setting of a deer park. History does not relate if young Prince Edward was allowed to enjoy such occasions during his stay in Richmond Park. Coloured engraving reproduced in John Hampson, The English at Table (London: William Collins, 1944). Private Collection

Prince Edward’s companions received strict instructions from the Queen not to ‘indulge in careless self-indulgent lounging ways’ such as slouching with their hands in their pockets. ‘Anything approaching a practical joke...should not be permitted’ (Anon, 1917). Lonely, and desperately bored by the reading he was made to do, young Edward made very little progress.

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Queen Victoria’s paintings

of White Lodge and Richmond Park

Painting by Queen Victoria depicting a view of the garden at White Lodge, watercolour, May 1858. Royal Collection Trust / © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2018

On a visit to her son, Edward, Prince of Wales, in May 1858, Queen Victoria painted the view from the Drawing Room window at White Lodge. The image illustrates the close personal connection between Queen Victoria and the Lodge. A talented artist, Victoria was tutored by the landscape painter, William Leighton Leitch.

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Victoria and Albert

Mourning the Duchess of Kent

Watercolour painting by William Leighton Leitch, 1861, depicting the gardens of White Lodge with two female figures wearing mourning dress. The shorter woman may be an image of Queen Victoria herself. She had retreated to White Lodge with her husband, following the death of her mother, the Duchess of Kent, on 16 March 1861. Royal Collection Trust / © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2018

Queen Victoria and Prince Albert stayed at White Lodge in 1861 following the death of the Queen’s mother, the Duchess of Kent. Victoria later recalled that she used to sit in the Long Gallery entrance hall ‘with Dearest Albert and look through dear Mama’s letters’ (Martin, 1879). In the same year, William Leighton Leitch painted a watercolour of two female figures in mourning walking in the garden at White Lodge.

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The Teck Family

A long occupancy

Photograph of the Teck Family at White Lodge, 1897. L-R: Prince Francis, the Duke of Teck (standing), the Duchess of Teck (seated), Prince Alexander, Prince Adolphus and Princess Victoria May, Duchess of York. Photographer unknown. Royal Collection Trust / © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2018

The Queen next granted White Lodge to her cousin, Princess Mary Adelaide, wife of Francis, the Duke of Teck. The Tecks were to live there from 1869 until their deaths some 30 years later. The Duchess was no stranger to the district. She had been brought up at Cambridge Cottage on Kew Green, and was married at the Kew Parish Church in 1866.

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The Duchess of Teck

Family life at White Lodge

Photograph of the Blue Room, which was Princess Mary Adelaide’s boudoir (or small drawing room; originally the ‘privy chamber’ of the 18th century Lodge), reproduced in The Strand Magazine, Vol VI (July–Sept 1893). Photo: Gunn and Stuart, Richmond. The Hearsum Collection DC0358   

In the 1870s, the Duchess of Teck’s diary is redolent of a quiet life at White Lodge. Such passages often recur as: ‘We had our tea on the lawn with all the children’ and ‘we hid the Easter eggs for [Princess] May in the corridor till nearly four, then into the garden with [her young brother] Francis and May. Sat out writing, playing with the chicks’ (Woodward, 1927).

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Illustration from a portrait HRH The Princess Mary of Cambridge, Duchess of Teck, from a watercolour by Samuel Cousins, painted c1850–70. Reproduced in The Graphic, 30 January 1892. The image depicts the Duchess in her youth. The Hearsum Collection DC0358  

Princess Mary Adelaide, Duchess of Teck (1833–1897), was the granddaughter of George III. When she was four, her parents, Adolphus Frederick, Duke of Cambridge, and Princess Augusta settled their family at Kew. A formidable figure, Mary Adelaide married Prince Francis of Teck in 1866. Their marriage was a volatile one.

 

The Duchess of Teck was particularly noted for her remarkable benevolence and countless philanthropic activities. She was a devout Anglican and was, in her prime, arguably the hardest working member of the royal family. Appeals and begging letters bombarded her daily at White Lodge. Her many charities included Dr Barnardo's, the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children, the Royal Cambridge Asylum, the St John Ambulance Association, the Young Women's Christian Association, and a dozen or so London hospitals.

 

This association with good works and welfare was an official royal policy. It raised the prestige and reaffirmed the importance of the monarchy in a time when it was retiring from national politics.

The Duke of Teck

Interior designer and gardener

Postcard featuring a photograph of the Duke of Teck seated in an open carriage, published by Malvern and Cheltenham, undated. Photographer unknown. Royal Collection Trust / © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2018 

The Duke of Teck (1837–1900) was reputedly an excellent interior designer and a passionate gardener; he also enjoyed sketching family and friends. Pretty winding walks ending in rustic arbours or romantic dells were laid out, and under his daughter’s window, he planted an Italian rose garden. Trees were removed to afford an unimpeded view of Richmond Park.

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The Parks Regulation Act, 1872

Page from a copy of Government legislation, headed ‘Royal Parks and Gardens’. Chapter 15: An Act for the Regulation of the Royal Parks and Gardens, 27 June 1872; known as the Parks Regulation Act (1872). The Hearsum Collection DC0326

The Parks Regulation Act of 27 June 1872 set out ‘to protect from injury Royal parks’ and ‘to secure the public from molestation and annoyance while enjoying such parks’. Public access to Richmond Park was thus enshrined in law.

Duke of Wellington

Attends a ball at White Lodge

Painting entitled ‘The Duchess of Richmond’s Ball’ by Robert Hillingford, oil on canvas, c.1870. The painting depicts a ball at Goodwood House, the family seat of the Dukes of Richmond. The occasion evidently had a strong military theme, and is reminiscent of the Tecks’ ball at White Lodge in 1873, which was held to commemorate the Battle of Waterloo. The Tecks’ Guest of Honour was the 2nd Duke of Wellington, whose illustrious father had led the allies to final victory against Napoleon. Source: Wickimedia/commons

Arthur Wellesley, 2nd Duke of Wellington (1807–1884) was one of many distinguished guests to visit the Tecks at White Lodge. On 19 May 1873, Wellington addressed a letter to White Lodge, Richmond Park saying, ‘We accept with great pleasure your and the Duchess's kind invitation to a ball on the 18th June’ (Dupré Collection). The ball was held on the 58th anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo.

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Princess May

The future Queen Mary

Detail of a portrait of Princess Victoria ‘May’ (Mary) of Teck, photographed two weeks before her wedding, which took place on 6 July 1893. She wears a diamond rivière necklace, a gift from her future parents-in-law, King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra; it was given in memory of their elder son, the Duke of Clarence, to whom May had been betrothed before his untimely death from pneumonia in January 1892. Photo: James Lafayette. Source: Wickimedia/commons

Princess May is known to history as Queen Mary (1867–1953); the consort of George V had very fond memories of her childhood at White Lodge. The Tecks were kind and indulgent parents. The Duke called his only daughter, ‘dearest Pussy-cat’. In 1874, Queen Victoria described her as ‘very plain’. Her mother, however, observed that ‘her Mayflower’ was ‘quick and clever and musical’ (Pope-Hennessy, 2000).

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A blissful childhood

‘She was no end of a romp’

Photograph of the great Cedrus libani [Cedar of Lebanon] tree in the grounds of White Lodge; the same tree that Princess ‘May’, later Queen Mary, had recalled playing beneath as a child. The image dates to c1960, and features students of The Royal Ballet School enjoying their break. Note the gardener with his wooden wheelbarrow in the background.  RBS/PHO/WL

As Thomas Frost recalled in The Chronicle, 11 May 1910, Princess May was a keen cricketer: ‘she’d fence with a bit of stick broken off from a tree, and whistle a tune as well as her brothers. I’ll tell you another secret. She used to play cricket. She’d first of all watch our boys play, and laugh and shout over the game; and when they’d gone she’d bring her brothers and get them to bowl to her.’

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Princess May and the ballerina

Taglioni’s Dancing Class

Drawing from life by Margaret Rolfe, depicting a dancing lesson taught by the great Paris Opera ballerina, Marie Taglioni (1804–1884), at No 6 Connaught Square, London. Taglioni (far right) is adjusting the pose of Princess May, watched by Rolfe, who is shown in a white dress, en pointe. Taglioni’s assistant, Mme Jacobi, is seen on the far left of the image. Watercolour and ink, c1877–80. © Victoria and Albert Museum, London

The celebrated ballerina, Marie Taglioni, fled Paris during the Franco-Prussian war of 1870/1. She moved to Connaught Square in London, where she supported herself by teaching private dancing lessons. Among Taglioni’s pupils was Princess May, whom she also taught at White Lodge. For the rest of her life, May (later Queen Mary), remained proud that she had been taught to curtsey by the great ‘Madame Taglioni’.

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Elizabeth of Austria-Hungary

‘Sissi’ visits White Lodge

Portrait of the Empress Elizabeth of Austria-Hungary by Franz Xaver Winterhalter, oil on canvas, 1865. Kunsthistorisches Museum in Wien [Vienna], Hofburg. Source: Wickimedia/commons

The Empress Elizabeth of Austria-Hungary (1837–1898) stayed at White Lodge for the hunting season in the summer of 1874. As a young man, Francis Teck had served in the Austrian Army and had been a favourite both with the Emperor and Empress – now he and his wife were welcomed to White Lodge as old friends.

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Henry Irving and Ellen Terry

Victorian celebrities at White Lodge

Colour tinted postcard featuring a photograph of Henry Irving as Dr Primrose, (The Vicar) and Ellen Terry as Olivia in Olivia, W G Wills's adaptation of The Vicar of Wakefield by Oliver Goldsmith (1730-1774). Terry first performed the role of Olivia at the Royal Court Theatre in 1878. This image shows a scene from a revival of the play at the Lyceum Theatre in 1885. Photo: Berlin. Published by Window and Grove. RBS/OBJ/WHI

The Duchess of Teck’s diaries are illuminated by her encounters with various celebrities she gathered together at White Lodge. In 1881, she invited Sir Henry Irving and Ellen Terry, the famous Victorian actors, who had recently starred at the Lyceum Theatre as Hamlet and Ophelia in Shakespeare’s tragic play of Hamlet.

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Financial ruin and scandal

The Tecks in exile

The city of Florence in Tuscany, Italy, where the Teck Family spent several months of their embarrassing ‘exile’ to the Continent in 1885, prompted by the unsustainable levels of debt they had incurred in England. Princess May, in particular, loved discovering Florence’s great art galleries, churches and museums. Photo: Peter Spring (2002)

The extravagant lifestyle of The Duke and Duchess of Teck left them in financial crisis. It was well known among their friends that the family was relatively ‘poor’. Their debts were so considerable that in September 1885 they left England for a short exile in Italy and Austria. They returned once the ensuing scandal had died down.

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Princess May’s 21st birthday

A gift from Richmond

Photograph of Princess May in her phaeton; the pony and carriage were given to her as a 21st birthday gift from the people of Richmond, May 1888. The framed photograph is inscribed on the reverse: ‘This photo frame always stood in the Feather Bedroom at Ham House. It belonged to Katherine Lady Huntingtower.’ Photographer unknown. The Hearsum Collection PH0385  

Princess May celebrated her 21st birthday on 26 May 1888. She received jewellery from the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, the Princess of Wales, the Duke of Edinburgh and many other relations. She was also the recipient of a special gift from the people of Richmond, ‘a most lovely Carriage’ in which she was photographed at White Lodge.

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A simpler life at the Lodge

Limited attempts at ‘frugality’

Illustration from a photograph, reproduced in Supplement to The Graphic, 30 October 1897. L-R: Prince Alexander, The Duchess of Teck, The Duke of Teck, Prince Adolphus, Prince Francis, Princess Victoria ‘May’, The Duchess of York. From a photograph by Gunn and Stuart, Richmond. The Hearsum Collection DC0222  

Following the return of the Tecks to England in 1885, their lifestyle was necessarily simpler and less lavish than before, although attempts at frugality appear to have been limited. The Duchess herself had an insatiable passion for food and was popularly but fondly known as ‘Fat Mary’. She is reported to have needed two chairs when sitting out a dance.

A secluded setting

In Richmond Park

Watercolour painting of White Lodge viewed from Pen Ponds, signed by the artist, R Richardson, and dated 14 April 1888. Royal Collection Trust / © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2018

A watercolour of White Lodge painted in 1888 by R Richardson, portrays the peaceful, secluded setting of the Tecks’ family home. Magnificent magnolias were trained over the outer walls of the curved quadrant corridors.

Servants at White Lodge

A busy life ‘below stairs’

A pencil drawing by Francis, Duke of Teck, showing a housemaid tending one of the fireplaces at White Lodge. Royal Collection Trust / © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2018

The Duke of Teck drew a sketch of one of the housemaids at White Lodge. It was inscribed: ‘An apparition! Good God what’s that? Anne the Housemade [sic] lighting the fire’. Despite the embarrassment of their recent exile due to debt, the Tecks continued to keep several coaches and horses, as well as a multitude of servants who worked hard to keep the estate running smoothly.

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Assault in Richmond Park

A servant attacked

Copy of ‘the plan of Mr Adams’ route’: as a result of an attack made upon a White Lodge servant in Richmond Park, on 22 April 1890, the Metropolitan Police produced this diagram to prove that the incident did not take place on a public footpath and was not, therefore, their responsibility! The Hearsum Collection: MA0046 © The National Archives: HO 45/9696/A49825

On 22 April 1890, Mr A E Adams, a servant at White Lodge, was attacked in Richmond Park by two ‘footpads’ [robbers or thieves who targeted pedestrian victims]. The Metropolitan Police insisted that because the incident took place on the private road leading to the Lodge, and not on the public footpath, they could not be held accountable for the safety of Mr Adams.

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New Richmond Theatre

A royal outing

Entrance to the new Richmond Theatre on Richmond Green, designed by Frank Matcham and opened in 1899 as the Theatre Royal and Opera House (also known as Richmond Theatre). In 1890, therefore, the Tecks would have visited its predecessor, then located on the Thames riverside in the former banqueting rooms of the Castle Hotel. This building was demolished in 1984, and the site redeveloped by the architect, Quinlan Terry (source: www.richmond.gov.uk/media/6322/local-history-richmond-theatres). Photo: Verne Source: Wickimedia/commons

On 12 April 1890 the Morning Post reported: ‘The Duke of Cambridge, the Duke and Duchess of Teck, Prince Alexander and Princess Victoria [May] of Teck, and the Grand Duke and Grand Duchess of Mecklenburg-Strelitz were present at the new Richmond Theatre last evening, and witnessed the performance of “A Scrap of Paper”, in which Lady Monckton and Mr. Arthur Dacre took part.’

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Celebrations at White Lodge

Silver Wedding Anniversary of the Tecks

Illustration reproduced in The Illustrated London News, 20 June 1891, p 800, showing the reception held at White Lodge to celebrate the Silver Wedding Anniversary of the Duke and Duchess of Teck. Inset (top left) shows the presentation of speeches, or ‘addresses and testimonials’; and (top right) the gift of a fine cavalry horse, or charger, to the Duke. RBS/OBJ/WHI

The Silver Wedding celebrations for the Duke and Duchess of Teck took place in 1891. White Lodge had been renovated in honour of the anniversary. Two garden parties were given on the 12 and 16 June, at which a Children’s Orchestra played, sponsored by the Duchess. Among the many presents the Tecks received was the ‘loveliest of watch bracelets’ sent by Queen Victoria.

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A tour of White Lodge, 1892

The Teck Family apartments

Floor plan illustrating the layout of rooms on the principal floor at White Lodge during the residency of the Teck Family. This copy of the plan was issued by the Lord Chamberlain’s Office, stamped and dated (top-left corner) 31 March 1905, although it appears to record the allocation of rooms around 1875, when Princess May was aged seven.  The plan shows that in the North Pavilion the Teck children occupied a ‘Night Nursery’ and a ‘Day Nursery’, and were tutored in the ‘School Room’. Royal Collection Trust / © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2018

The Strand Magazine was a popular Illustrated Monthly, published in London. Volume VI (July-December 1893) included a lengthy and admiring article describing the splendid interiors of White Lodge, home of the royal Teck family. Written by Mary Spencer-Warren, the article was similar in tone to a celebrity magazine today. It was illustrated with many of the fine photographs taken in 1892 by Gunn & Stuart of Richmond. 

Death of Prince Albert, Duke of Clarence

Tragedy for Princess May

Photograph of Prince Albert Victor, Duke of Clarence and Avondale, 1891 – the year in which he was betrothed to Princess May. Photo: W & D Downey. Source: Wickimedia/commons

Princess May had become engaged to Prince Albert, the heir presumptive to the throne in December 1891. Known as ‘Eddy’, the Prince died of pneumonia only a month later, on 14 January 1892, at the age of just 28.

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Dowager Empress Frederick of Germany

Matchmaking

Portrait of the Princess Victoria, Princess Royal, as Crown Princess of Prussia. Painting by Franz Xaver Winterhalter, oil on canvas, 1867. The Royal Collection. Source: Wickimedia/commons

The Dowager Empress Frederick of Germany (1840–1901), who was Queen Victoria’s eldest daughter known as ‘Vicky’, was invited to luncheon at White Lodge in March 1893. After the death of Prince Albert, Duke of Clarence, the previous year, matrimonial negotiations were again afoot for Princess May. She was to become engaged to the new heir presumptive, the future George V.

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Another marriage proposal

Romance in Richmond Park

Photograph of ‘Her Serene Highness, Princess Victoria Mary [‘May’] of Teck, reproduced in The Graphic, 30 January 1892, p 157. Photo: Reginald Walpole. The Hearsum Collection DC0358

Prince George came to dinner at White Lodge on 2 May 1893. The following day the Duke and Duchess vacated the Lodge, leaving Princess May to wait upon the return of her suitor to seek her hand in marriage. However, all did not go as planned.

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The wedding of Princess May

Display of gifts at White Lodge

Edward VII, seated on the right, taking tea in the Drawing Room of White Lodge, with Princess May (centre) and her parents, the Duke and Duchess of Teck. The King is shown making an informal family visit to his future daughter-in-law. Illustration by Thomas Walter Wilson, engraved and published by R Taylor and Co, c1893. Private Collection

Princess May married Prince George, Duke of York on 6 July 1893 at the Chapel Royal in St James’ Palace. A photograph taken in one of the crescent corridors at White Lodge shows the multitude of wedding presents sent to the couple. They were on private view to invited guests at White Lodge, and then put on display for the paying public at the Imperial Institute, until 2 September.

Princess May’s ‘charming retreat’

Birthplace of Edward VIII

Drawing of the infant Edward, Prince of Wales, later Edward VIII, better known to history as the Duke of Windsor, following his abdication in 1936. Inscribed with the initials of the artist, AFR, and the date in French:  ‘White Lodge, 20 Juillet [July] 1894’. Royal Collection Trust / © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2018

The boudoir of Princess May was the room where she spent many days of her girlhood, and where, as a mother, she cradled her infant son. White was the prominent colour - white ceiling, white walls relieved with terra-cotta and a white centre in the oriental carpet. An article in The Graphic, 30 October 1897, declared it to be ‘the most interesting portion of White Lodge’.

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The christening of Prince Edward

Four generations of British monarchs

Commemorative photograph of the Christening of Prince Edward at White Lodge, annotated with the date, 16 July 1894. One of a series of celebrated images of the occasion, known as ‘The Four Generations’, it shows the infant Edward, later The Duke of Windsor, on the lap of his great-grandmother, Queen Victoria; flanked by his grandfather, the Prince of Wales, later King Edward VII; and his father, the Duke of York, later King George V. The photograph was taken at the Southern end of the Long Gallery entrance vestibule. Photo: W & D Downey, London. Hearsum Collection PH0371A

For the birth of her first child in 1894, May went home to White Lodge to be with her mother. The baby, born on Midsummer’s Eve, was to become King Edward VIII (who reigned for only 11 months in 1936 before abdicating). His christening at White Lodge was a prestigious affair; the event was marked by remarkable photographs depicting four generations of British monarchs.

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Two Princes in the garden

‘David and Bertie’

Two future kings: White Lodge, August 1897. Prince Edward. Aged three (known to his family as David) later became Edward VIII (reigned January to December 1936), although he abdicated before his formal coronation. He is seen here playing in the gardens of White Lodge with his younger brother Prince Albert (or ‘Bertie’), aged two, who would later be crowned George VI (reigned 1937-1952). Royal Collection Trust / © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2018

In August 1897, Princess May’s sons, the two Princes, were photographed in the garden at White Lodge. Prince Edward, known as ‘David’, wheeled a barrow holding Prince Albert, or ‘Bertie’, later King George VI. Both the Princes wore smocks and wide-brimmed hats.

Death of the Duchess of Teck

‘Universally beloved’

Painting showing the Duchess of Teck’s lying-in-state in the Drawing Room of White Lodge, signed by the artist, Pritchett, watercolour dated 1897. A housemaid can be seen keeping vigil. The window seat at the head of the coffin is located in the bay later converted into double-doors, which open onto the West-facing balcony built on to the main villa in 1922.  Royal Collection Trust / © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2018

In April 1897, the Duchess of Teck underwent an emergency operation at White Lodge. Although she recovered, her overall state of health rapidly deteriorated and she was subject to prolonged fainting fits. She died five months later. Her husband, the Duke, survived until January 1900.

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Mrs Eliza Emma Hartman

On ‘intimate terms’ with the King

Photograph of Emma Hartman, wearing a celebrated ‘choker’ necklace made from rare and perfectly-coloured aquamarines, which was a gift to her from Edward, when he was Prince of Wales. Date (pre-1910) and photographer unknown. Image source: Blog ‘The Court Jeweller’, written by Ella Kay, posted 27 March 2017

In 1901, the new King Edward VII gave the use of the Lodge to a Mrs Eliza Emma Hartman, the widow of German-born James Hartmann. She was described variously in the press as an ‘American widow’ on ‘intimate terms’ with the King; ‘not an American who will occupy the Royal Residence’; an ‘Alsatian reputed to be very rich’ and as the ‘Chatelaine of White Lodge’. She had the Lodge lavishly redecorated.

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Lord Farquhar

Electricity reaches White Lodge

Caricature of Horace Farquhar, Earl Farquhar by Leslie Ward, who was renowned under the pseudonym ‘Spy’. Published in Vanity Fair, 2 June 1898, the original lithograph was published by Vincent Brooks, Day & Son. This version is held in the City College of New York Collection. Source: Wickimedia/commons

Horace Farquhar, Earl Farquhar (1844–1923), a financier, politician and courtier, occupied White Lodge as a ‘grace and favour’ resident from 1909–1923. The Farquhars set about installing all the modern conveniences. By spring 1910, 2500 yards of electric cable had been laid at the cost of £1,147 5s 6d (equivalent of around £65,460 today), bringing electricity to White Lodge.

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New map of Richmond Park, 1909

Introducing motoring speed limits

Map by Coryn de Vere (1909) showing features in the Richmond Park landscape surrounding White Lodge. Published by Knapp, Drewett & Sons Ltd, Kingston on Thames. The Hearsum Collection MA0044

The 1909 map drawn by Coryn de Vere marks out ‘carriage roads’ in yellow; these were increasingly used by ‘horseless carriages’ – the new-fangled motor car! The map also shows the new speed restriction and warns that: ‘No Motor Car or any other vehicle is allowed to proceed at a greater speed than 10 MILES AN HOUR.’

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The Imperial Ballet at Richmond Theatre

Anna Pavlova dances ‘The Swan’

Front cover of Dress and Vanity Fair magazine, featuring Anna Pavlova in Fokine’s Le Cygne, popularly called The Dying Swan, undated fragment. Pavlova’s Swan costume was designed for her by Léon Bakst. RBS/MOR/2/2

In January 1912, the famous ballerina, Anna Pavlova, and her partner, Laurent Novikoff, performed at Richmond Theatre with the members of the Company of the Imperial Ballet, St Petersburg. Many decades later, students of The Royal Ballet School would follow in Pavlova’s footsteps, dancing each summer at Richmond Theatre during the 1970s and 1980s.

To find out more about Anna Pavlova's visit: timeline.royalballetschool.org.uk/1900/item/29/

Richmond Park and the First World War

Top secret experiment on Pen Ponds

Photograph captioned ‘The “Artists” Get Ready to Fight’: it shows the Second Battalion Artists’ Rifles, 28th Battalion the London Regiment, leaving Richmond Park for a route march, headed by their band, 1914. The regiment was one of several training in the Park, which became an armed camp during the First World War. The ‘Artists’ Battalion went on to fight in France in October 1914. Photographer unknown. The Hearsum Collection PR0220

In the years before the First World War broke out in 1914, the Park had become a site of wildlife conservation, genteel residence and public recreation. The conflict brought cavalry training, a South African military hospital, women working on the Home Front and a top-secret military experiment on Pen Ponds. In 1917 areas were ploughed up for crops and garden allotments.

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H G Wells and his ‘aerial ropeway’

Famous author’s wartime invention

Photograph showing measurements being taken during the construction and testing of the ‘Leeming’ Portable and Collapsible Aerial Ropeway, designed by H G Wells. Digital copy held at The Hearsum Collection © The National Archives MUN 5/198/1660/13

In 1917, the prolific English writer and visionary, H G Wells, used Richmond Park to try out his latest invention, an ‘aerial ropeway’, for the war effort. This consisted of a series of ten-foot high wooden poles and half-mile lengths of ropeway which could, under cover of darkness, transport loads of up to ten tons an hour (carrying anything from rations to the wounded on stretchers).

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Albert Waterfield

Civilian Medal for bravery

Page from the Supplement to the London Gazette, 1 January 1923, p10. Half way down the left-hand column is an item recording that on 30 December 1922 the King approved the awarding of a medal for gallantry to ‘Albert Waterfield, Park-keeper, Richmond Park.’ Source: www.thegazette.co.uk/London/issue/32782/supplement/10/data.pdf

In December 1922, Albert Waterfield, a Park Keeper in Richmond Park, was awarded the Empire Gallantry Medal by King George V. On 10 May 1921, he had been on duty in the early hours of the morning when he pursued and caught two armed men, both members of the Irish Republican Army (IRA) trying to break into White Lodge.

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The Duke and Duchess of York

Newly-weds at White Lodge

Portrait of the Duchess of York, neé Lady Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon (1900–2002) by the Hungarian artist, Philip de László. Painting in oils, 1925. Royal Collection Trust/All Rights Reserved

The Duke of York, the future George VI and his bride, Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon made their first home at White Lodge. The couple were married in Westminster Abbey on 26 April 1923. They first met at a ball given by the Farquhars in 1920. The Duke reputedly asked his equerry ‘who was that lovely girl you were talking to? Introduce me to her.’

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No privacy for the Yorks

‘...hordes of sightseers’

Page from a photograph album held in the Royal Collection, Windsor, annotated ‘White Lodge 1925’. Above: The Duke and Duchess of York on the exterior staircase leading from the Salon into the garden. Below: The family dog, seen with the Duke.  These informal snapshots were probably taken by the couple themselves. Royal Collection Trust/All Rights Reserved

White Lodge appeared to afford an idyllic retreat and the Duke and Duchess of York duly invested in extensive renovations to the house and grounds of their new home.  The tennis court was installed for the Duke, c1923; an enthusiastic tennis player, he entered the Men’s Doubles at Wimbledon with Louis Greig in 1926, but they lost in the first round.

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Prince Aleksander

A second royal birth at White Lodge

Photograph of Prince Paul of Yugoslavia and Princess Olga of Greece with their infant son, Prince Aleksander. Taken at White Lodge after the baby’s Christening. The Duke of York, then resident at White Lodge, had been the couple’s Best Man at their wedding. Photographer unknown. The Hearsum Collection PH0412

On 13 August 1924, there was another royal birth at White Lodge. Prince Aleksander Pavlov Karadorevic was born to Princess Olga of Greece and Denmark and Prince Paul of Yugoslavia, in the same room as that in which Prince Edward of Wales had been born, 30 years earlier. A special photograph was taken after the christening, which also took place at White Lodge. 

Final chapter as a royal residence

Two future Queens of Great Britain

Photograph of the Duchess of York with the infant Princess Elizabeth in her lap; the young Duchess is seen sitting on the lower part of the exterior staircase of White Lodge, which leads from the Salon into the garden. Royal Collection Trust/All Rights Reserved

HM Queen Elizabeth II was born on 21 April 1926 at 17 Bruton Street, London. She was photographed in the arms of her mother, the Duchess of York, on the steps of White Lodge. Her Majesty’s birth certificate gives the Lodge as her parents’ home address. Little did they know that their daughter would one day become the country’s longest-reigning monarch.

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‘An impossible residence’

Departure of the Duke and Duchess

Reproduction of a poster design by Charles Sharland (1911) used by Transport for London to advertise the attractions of Richmond Park, which was in easy reach of both Richmond and Mortlake train stations. Similar posters advertised tram routes to Richmond Park. Published by Underground Electric Railways Company Limited. Printed by Waterlow & Sons Ltd. Lith. London Wall, London. RBS/OBJ/WHI

White Lodge proved to be too expensive and too public for the Duke and Duchess of York. A letter from their private secretary stated: ‘they find the White Lodge an impossible residence at the moment.’ It was ‘altogether too far from London’ and due to numerous sightseers they hardly dared ‘put their noses outside’ as all privacy had ‘ceased to exist’.

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Lord and Lady Lee

New tenants of White Lodge

Press photograph of the housewarming garden party at White Lodge, given by Lord and Lady Lee on 20 May 1929. The couple invited, as their special guests, many wounded soldiers, sailors and airmen who were veterans of WWI (1914-18), and possibly of the earlier Boer War (1899-1902). Print stamped on the reverse: The Times and Acme Newspictures. Photographer unknown. RBS/PHO/WL

The King granted a life lease of White Lodge to Lord and Lady Lee of Fareham, which officially started on 7 November 1927. The Duke and Duchess of York moved to 145 Piccadilly early that year, taking with them a chandelier and several tapestries. Queen Mary had four stained glass panels from two of the windows moved to Buckingham Palace.

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Sir Arthur Hamilton Lee

Collector and patron of art

Hand-drawn copy of an architectural drawing showing Lord Lee’s plan for a small private art gallery, which he had installed the upper floor of the main villa of White Lodge. Lee’s design included glass roofing to admit natural light; fabric wall coverings; ventilation and hanging systems. His scheme for the White Lodge gallery was published in Country Life, 8 September 1928. Drawing by Heloise Spring, 2017

Arthur Hamilton Lee, 1st Viscount Lee of Fareham (1868–1947) and his wife moved into White Lodge in April 1927. A great patron of the arts, Lee had accumulated a considerable personal collection of paintings. One of his conditions of moving to White Lodge was being free to accommodate his collection there. In 1932, he co-founded the Courtauld Institute of Art.

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Photograph of Arthur Hamilton Lee, 1st Viscount Lee of Fareham, photographer unknown. Portrait published in Volume XLIII of a collection of essays entitled The World’s Work (Doubleday, Page and Co. 1921), p 116. Source: digitized by the Internet Archive in 2011 (archive.org/details/worldswork43gard), funded by the University of Toronto

As well as being a patron of the arts, Viscount Lee was a great soldier statesman. Educated at Cheltenham College, he joined the Royal Artillery in 1888. In June 1889 he undertook a lengthy secret mission to gather information on the Russian fortifications at Vladivostok on the eve of the Russo-Japanese war. After several military postings and an assignment to the British Embassy in Washington, he entered politics and served as Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries, and as First Lord of the Admiralty following the First World War.

 

Before moving to White Lodge, Lee and his wife lived at Chequers, a country house in Buckinghamshire. In 1917, they gave the estate and the entire contents of the house – including a library, historical papers and manuscripts, and a collection of Cromwellian portraits and artefacts - in trust to the nation to be used as an official residence and retreat of British Prime Ministers. Active in the art sales of the 1920s, he bequeathed his entire collection to the Courtauld Institute of Art, which he co-founded in 1932.

The Wall Street Crash

Financial difficulties

Reproduction of a news cutting from The Daily Mail, Continental Edition, Friday October 25 1929. The front page of the newspaper was headlined the ‘Greatest Crash in Wall Street’s History’, and reported that prices had tumbled ‘like an avalanche’. Source: www.history.com

The Lees suffered financial difficulties following the great market crash of 1929. Their lease in perpetuity was passed back to the Crown and they negotiated a tenancy which would be renewed every twelve months. King George V and Queen Mary personally sent word that they were happy that Lord and Lady Lee were able to continue the tenancy of White Lodge.

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Departure of the Lees

Public sale of furniture

Postcard of White Lodge, featuring a photograph of the great West Front. While the lawns appear to be well kept, and Italianate plant pots adorn the façade, the Crescent windows seem completely overgrown with foliage, indicating that the Wings were unoccupied. It is reasonable to speculate that economic constraints may have been the cause, and likely that the photograph dates to the latter part of Lord and Lady Lee’s residence (see images of the Lee’s housewarming party at the start of their tenancy for comparison). Photographer unknown. The Hearsum Collection PC0330

When Lord and Lady Lee left White Lodge in 1938, the public sale of their furniture was recorded in the press: ‘One well remembers at the sale of Lord Lee’s furniture at the White Lodge after his departure, the butler standing at the door with a slightly sardonic air at the stream of visitors, most of whom had come to look rather than to buy.’ Even so, the Lees retained their remarkable collection of antiques.

Queen Mary at the ballet

Sadler’s Wells Theatre

Photograph of Dame Beryl Grey CH DBE. The famous dancer is pictured backstage, tying the ribbons of her pointe shoes, undated, c1940. Photo: P A Reuter © PA Images. RBS/PHO2/72

In 1939, Queen Mary attended a charity gala performance of the Petipa-Tchaikovsky Imperial Russian ballet, The Sleeping Beauty, at London’s Sadler’s Wells Theatre. The Queen was presented with a bouquet by the youngest pupil from the Sadler’s Wells Ballet School. Eleven-year-old Beryl Groom, later known as Beryl Grey, went on to become a celebrated ballerina of The Royal Ballet.

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Nora Reynolds Albertini

Widow and extravagant society hostess

Press photograph of Nora Reynolds Albertini, taken on 2 November 1936. The reverse of the print is annotated: ‘Threw swanky party; resented publication of cost Mrs. Nora Reynolds Albertini, wife of the American millionaire, Stockwell Reynolds Albertini, pictured on her way to court in London, where she brought action recently, against a British publication, which printed a story describing a party given by her. The party cost about $5,000 spent for costly foods and 600 bottles of champagne for 500 guests. The court held that the article Mrs. Albertini charged was libellous, was an honest comment of public interest.’ So Mrs. Albertini lost her case! RBS/PHO/WL

At the beginning of World War II, White Lodge was rented by Mrs Nora Reynolds Albertini, the wife of an American railway millionaire, Stockwell Reynolds (who died in 1942), and sister of the film star, Reginald Denny. A well-known London hostess, she was a devout Catholic and created a chapel within the Lodge, as well as a billiards room and a small indoor swimming pool.

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Marble bust of Princess Amelia

Lord Lee’s antique at White Lodge

Marble bust of Princess Amelia Sophia Eleanor, second daughter of George II, by Louis Francois Roubialiac, c1740. Collection of the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge. Source: www.bathartandarchitecture.blogspot.co.uk

 

A purchase receipt survives in Lord Lee’s archives for the ‘Bust of Princess Amelia...Delivered to Mrs Albertini 19 February 1940’, indicating that both she and Lord Lee shared an interest in the historical association of White Lodge with Princess Amelia. Due to the imminent threat from Nazi invasion, in June 1940 most of Lord Lee’s superb collection of antiques, Renaissance jewellery and medieval manuscripts were evacuated by sea to Canada.

The Blitz

Bomb decoys near White Lodge

Detail of an aerial photograph of Richmond Park c1941, showing White Lodge (top left) lying perilously close to the ‘Starfish’ decoys visible to the immediate right of the Lodge, which appear as circular shapes in the landscape. These were lit up at night as decoys to prevent bomb damage to the town centres of Kingston, Sheen, Twickenham and Richmond which surrounded the Park. The Hearsum Collection PH0421. By permission of Historic England Archive (USAAF Photography)

While there are no records of damage to White Lodge, bombs did fall nearby. The Queen’s Ride was recorded as having been hit by four high explosive bombs on 10 October 1940, and Winston Churchill recorded in his diary on 10 April 1945: ‘a brisk canter in Richmond Park where I examined a large V2 [German missile] crater near White Lodge.’

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‘Phantom’ Regiment

Covert Operations in Richmond Park

Photograph of the Duke of Kent inspecting the Phantom Regiment, 1941. Annotated with the names of those in the foreground, L-R: ‘Hoppy’, David Niven, (‘A’ Squ[adron], The Duke of Kent. Photographer unknown. Digital copy from an original held by Colonel D T W Gibson c2006. The Hearsum Collection PH0057

‘The Duke of York inspects the ‘Phantom’ in Richmond Park 22 May 1941’. During the war, Pembroke Lodge was taken over by the ‘Phantom’ Regiment, officially the GHQ Liaison Regiment. This special reconnaissance unit was trained to provide specialist military information about the enemy for Higher Command, bypassing usual means of communication. Officers included the film star, Major David Niven.

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Richmond Park research

Astronomical discovery of Cygnus A

Multi-wavelength composite photograph of Cygnus A, the most powerful radio galaxy near Earth, which was first detected by Stanley Hey during World War Two. Using Army aerials based in Richmond Park, Hey initially spotted the radiation from the exploding galaxy 600 million light-years away. This image incorporates X-ray data, seen in blue (credit: NASA/CXC/SAO); and radio emissions, seen in red (credit: NSF/NRAO/AUI/VLA); as well as optical wavelength data, seen in yellow (credit: NASA/STScI). Source: https://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap150124.html

The scientist James Stanley Hey, MBE (1909 – 2000) was engaged in wartime research on anti-aircraft radar. In February 1942 he deduced that solar flares were causing the signal interferences affecting radar stations along the South coast of England. ‘Using the aerials at his Army establishment at Richmond Park…Hey and his team surveyed the heavens. “A new and exciting discovery emerged”, Hey recalled:

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The Royal Air Force at White Lodge

White Lodge is requisitioned

Postcard sent from White Lodge, dated 17 January 1944, to Scotland. Philip Duncan was a member of the Royal Air Force (RAF); he writes to tell Mr Duncan that he will remain based at White Lodge until 29 January before going to Worcester for three weeks. The Hearsum Collection PC0743

By August 1942 White Lodge had been requisitioned by the Air Ministry, probably to accommodate the crew who were needed to maintain the nearby ‘Starfish’ aerial bombardment decoy. The Royal Air Force made use of the basement floor, including the kitchen, scullery and pantry. Following victory in Europe in May 1945, Mrs Reynolds Albertini returned to White Lodge.

Marshal Tito

President of Yugoslavia

Front cover of a biography of Marshal Tito of Yugoslavia by Michael Padev (London: Muller, 1944). The image shows Tito in the heroic style often used to depict Communist leaders. The suite of rooms in which he stayed at White Lodge in 1953 is still called ‘Tito’ and was for many years used as school dormitories. Photo: Fiona McNaught RBS/PHO(History Booklet)

The marriage of Mrs Reynolds Albertini and Colonel James Veitch of the Coldstream Guards was reported in the Evening News on 12 April 1950. They continued to occupy White Lodge after the war, and hosted Marshal Tito there when he came to England on a state visit, March 1953. The Foreign Office agreed to Tito’s entourage being 29 strong, but let only 12 reside with him at White Lodge. For security reasons, Tito was not accommodated in a London hotel (Spehnjak, 2005).

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Search for a new tenant

A new future for White Lodge

Photograph of the Salon at White Lodge, c1953. The parquet floor, elaborate wall covering (silk or paper), and large crystal chandelier (which appears to hold candles, but may also be wired for electricity), were all eventually removed to create a ballet studio for The Royal Ballet School. RBS/PHO/8

On 15 August 1953, Mrs Reynolds Veitch wrote once again to Winston Churchill, this time in order to ask him to use his influence to relieve her of the lease on White Lodge. There was a subsequent flurry of activity to find a new tenant – and the long-established Marler and Marler Estate Agency, in Knightsbridge, discreetly put the Crown property on the market.

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Sadler’s Wells Ballet School

A new lease of life

Photograph of the West façade of White Lodge with young students of the Sadler’s Wells Ballet School running into the garden c1956. At that time, most of the pupils were girls, although since the early 1990s there has been an equal number of girls and boys in the School. Photographer unknown. RBS/PHO/6/10

On 15 July 1954, Mr Hillman of the Crown Lands Commission received a letter from Edmund H Trollope, a surveyor appointed by Mrs Reynolds Veitch. He sought permission to assign the lease of White Lodge to the Royal Opera House Ltd, who wished to use the property as a school for the Sadler’s Wells Ballet. He wrote: ‘I can think of no better use to which this magnificent house can be put …’

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White Lodge becomes home to the School

Early days and a mishap!

Photograph of the East façade of White Lodge with young students of the Sadler’s Wells Ballet School dancing in the front garden c1957. At that time, most of the pupils were girls, although for many years since there has been an equal number of girls and boys in the School. Photo: Chris Ware. RBS/PHO/4/6

During the Autumn Term of the new academic year 1955/6, the first cohort of students boarding at White Lodge had to travel to their daily lessons at the School's Colet Gardens site in Barons Court, as the Stable Block classrooms were not yet ready. Builders were also at work on some Attic bedrooms in the main villa of the Lodge, where an accidental fire broke out just after Christmas.

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The Royal Ballet School

Awarding of a Royal Charter

The Royal Charter, awarded by HM Queen Elizabeth II to The Royal Ballet School and Companies on 31 October 1956, incorporating the Coat of Arms of The Royal Ballet © Royal Opera House. By kind permission ROH Collections.

On 9 October 1956, the School and its affiliated Companies were awarded a Royal Charter by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. In December, HRH The Princess Margaret became President of the newly named three-fold institution: The Royal Ballet Company, the Royal Ballet Touring Company (later Birmingham Royal Ballet) and The Royal Ballet School.

The grand opening

Dame Margot Fonteyn

Photograph of Margot Fonteyn in the East Portico entrance to White Lodge, with the School’s Chairman of Governors, Viscount Lord Soulbury. Dame Margot presided at the official opening of White Lodge on 31 July 1957, a festive occasion on which the building was opened to the public. Photographer unknown. RBS/PHO/4

White Lodge, now the home of The Royal Ballet School, was opened to the public on 31 July 1957 for the formal opening ceremony presided over by the prima ballerina, Dame Margot Fonteyn. White Lodge then remained open for two months with a celebratory public exhibition designed by the School’s Director, Arnold Haskell. It included ballet designs by Picasso, Bakst and Benois.

Princess Margaret at White Lodge

The Anna Pavlova ballet studio

Photograph of HRH The Princess Margaret being welcomed to White Lodge by Viscount Soulbury, Chairman of the School Governors. On 19 July 1957, The Princess was guest of honour at the opening of the ‘Anna Pavlova Memorial Hall’, the first purpose-built ballet studio installed by The Royal Ballet School at White Lodge. Photo: Richmond and Twickenham Times (print is stamped ‘proof’). RBS/PHO/7/3/2(1)

Princess Margaret was a passionate supporter of the ballet, serving as President of The Royal Ballet School and Companies from 1956 until her death in 2002. Her first official visit to White Lodge was on 19 July 1957, when she opened the School’s first purpose-built ballet studio – named after the famous Russian ballerina, Anna Pavlova.

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Click here to see more about the history of The Royal Ballet School

If you have enjoyed our White Lodge History Timeline and would like to find out more about the history of The Royal Ballet School and Companies, please visit:

www.timeline.royalballetschool.org.uk

 

The Royal Ballet School: White Lodge History Timeline

Our White Lodge History Timeline tells the story of this fine Grade I listed English Palladian villa, which lies at the heart of London’s magnificent Richmond Park. (White Lodge was first listed by Historic England, 10 March 1981: list entry 1250045.)

Commissioned in 1725 as a hunting lodge for George I, White Lodge remains part of the Crown Estate to this day. By moving through the Timeline, viewers will be able to trace how White Lodge was built; its architects, royal connections and occupants; how the interiors and grounds have changed over time, and finally how it came to be the home of one of the world’s leading ballet schools. 

An ongoing project:  The Timeline has been created by The Royal Ballet School to record the first three centuries of White Lodge’s remarkable history. The School has been privileged to occupy this unique place since 1955; as a working boarding school, however, it is unable to offer regular public access to the site.  Through creating this illustrated on-line resource, the School aims to provide virtual access to the buildings and grounds – as well as fascinating archival material relating to the Lodge’s history. We hope you enjoy our White Lodge History Timeline, and that you will return to discover more as we develop it in future.  

Contact us

The Royal Ballet School’s White Lodge History Timeline is an ongoing project managed by The Royal Ballet School Special Collections.  You can email us at:  [email protected]

We would welcome any information that might enable us to develop the White Lodge History Timeline.  Please be aware, however, that we are not usually able to enter into individual discussions concerning the ‘Timeline’ project.

Project editor and text for image captions: Anna Meadmore

Main text: Alice Higgins

Archival and image research and text: Allen Gilham

Additional research: Alice Higgins and Dr Robert Wood

Images preparation: Camilla Forti and Anna Meadmore

Data input and proofing: Camilla Forti

Project coordinator: Annalise Cunild

Design: Lee Rennie at tonicbox

Locations photography: Jacob Schulelewis, Brian Slater, Katie Davison

Thanks

Daniel Hearsum, who has generously allowed us the use of material held in the Hearsum Collection to illustrate extensive sections of the Timeline, enabling these wonderful items to be enjoyed online, where they can be appreciated within their proper historical context.

The late Siân Busby, who researched and wrote the text for a White Lodge History Timeline, which was displayed in White Lodge Museum, The Royal Ballet School, from 2009–15. Her work has provided us with a valuable inspiration and starting point for this online resource.

The Royal Ballet School is extremely grateful that this vital work was made possible by generous donations from: Julia Farron, the Foyle Foundation, the Idlewild Trust and an anonymous donor.

Images have been drawn from a number of national collections. The Royal Ballet School is particularly grateful to the following organisations and individuals:

National Portrait Gallery

Orleans House Gallery

Royal Collection Trust

Victoria and Albert Museum, London

The Estates of Lord Sidmouth and The Duke of Wellington

©The Royal Ballet School 2018

All rights reserved

No part of this online resource may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means without full acknowledgement of the copyright holders, except for permitted fair dealing under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988.

The Royal Ballet School has made all reasonable efforts to reach artists, photographers and/or copyright owners of images used in this online resource.  It is prepared to pay fair and reasonable fees for any usage made without compensation agreement.

 

 

Bibliography and references

 

The Royal Ballet School extends grateful thanks to the many archivists, historians and collectors who have given their invaluable assistance with this project:

 

Primary Sources: (archival research by Allen Gilham):

The Royal Library and Royal Archives, Windsor

The Royal Photograph Collection, Windsor

The National Archives (United Kingdom), Kew

British Museum, Additional Manuscripts Collection (Henrietta Howard)

London Metropolitan Archives, City of London

Courtauld Institute of Art (Viscount Lee of Fareham Collection), Somerset House

 

Secondary Sources: (published material consulted by all contributors):

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Anon. (1917). The Private Life of King Edward VII (Prince of Wales 1841 – 1901) by a Member of the Royal Household. City unknown: Read Books, 2009.

Bennett, S. (2000). Five Centuries of Women and Gardens. London: National Portrait Gallery.

Bevan, I. (1954). Royal Performance: the Story of Royal Theatregoing. London: Hutchinson.

Bland, A. (1981). The Royal Ballet, the First 50 Years. London: Threshold/Doubleday.

Borman, T. (2010). King’s Mistress, Queen’s Servant, the Life and Times of Henrietta Howard.  London: Vintage Books.

Broadwood, L.E. (1904). Journal of the Folk-Song Society, 5, pp. 275–276.

Bryan, J. (2011). Marble Hill. Revised ed. London: English Heritage.

Campbell, C. (2006). Vitruvius Britannicus: the Classic of Eighteenth-Century British Architecture. Unabridged republication of Vitruvius Britannicus or The British Architect. London, 3 Volumes: 1715, 1717, and 1725. New York: Dover Publications.

Cloake, J. (1996). Palaces and Parks of Richmond and Kew. Vol. 2. Chichester: Phillimore.

Coke, M. (1889). The Letters and Journals of Lady Mary Coke. Vols. 1-4, 1756 – 1774. Edinburgh: David Douglas.

Collenette, C.L. (1937). A History of Richmond Park. London: Sidgwick and Jackson.

Colvin, H.M. (1976). The History of the King’s Works. Vol. 5. Great Britain: Ministry of Public Building and Works HMSO.

Couper, H., Henbest, N. (2012). The Story of Astronomy: How the Universe Revealed its Secrets. 2nd ed. London: Cassell Illustrated.

Dobinson, C. (2000). Fields of Deception: Britain’s Bombing Decoys of World War II. London: English Heritage.

Ellis, J., ed. (1962). Thatched With Gold: the Memoirs of Mabell Countess of Airlie. London: Hutchinson.

Fowler, S. (2015). Richmond at War 1939–45. London: Richmond Local History Society.

Harman, A., Linton, P. (1997). The Royal Ballet School; events of the past 50 years. Illustrated booklet. London: The Royal Ballet School.

Hartman, R. (1964). The Remainder Biscuit. London: Andre Deutsch.

Haslip, J. (2000). The Lonely Empress: Life of Elizabeth, Empress of Austria. London: Phoenix Press.

Hervery, J. and Croker, J. (1848). Memoirs of the reign of George the Second, from his accession to the death of Queen Caroline. Bu John, Lord Hervey. Edited, from the original manuscript at Ickworth, the the Right Hon. John Wilson Crocker, LL.D. F.R.S. In Two Volumes. London John Murray, Albermarle Street.

Hewlings, R. (2009). ‘White Lodge, Richmond New Park’, The Georgian Group Journal, Volume XVII, pp. 41–60.

Honour, H., Fleming, J. (1991). A World History of Art. 3rd revised ed. London: Laurence King.

Lazarus, M. and Pardoe, H. (2009). Bute’s Botanical tables: dictated by Nature. Archives of Natural History, Volume 36(2). Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, pp. 277-298.

Lee, S. (1925). King Edward VII: A Biography – Vol. 1. London: Macmillan.

Lee, S. (1927). King Edward VII: A Biography – Vol. 2. London: Macmillan.

Loudon, J.C. (ed.) (2013). The Landscape Gardening and Landscape Architecture of the late Humphry Repton, Esq.  Cambridge: Cambridge Library Collection.

Martin, T. (1879). The Life of HRH The Prince Consort. 5 Vols. New York: Publisher unknown.

McKendry, M., Boxer, A. (ed.) (1983). Seven Hundred Years of English Cooking. Revised ed.  London: Treasure Press.

Panton, K.J. (2011). Historical Dictionary of the British Monarchy. Lanham MD: Scarecrow Press.

Pellew, G. (1847). The Life and Correspondence of the Right Honourable Henry Addington, First Viscount Sidmouth, Volume II. London: John Murray.

Ponsonby, F. (ed.) (1928). The Letters of the Empress Frederick. London: MacMillan.

Pope-Hennessey, J. (2000). Queen Mary 1867 – 1953. New ed. London: Phoenix Press.

Rabbitts, P.A. (2014). Richmond Park: From Medieval Pasture to Royal Park. Stroud: Amberley.

Sedgwick, R. (ed.) (1939). Letters from George III to Lord Bute, 1756-1766. London: Macmillan and Co.

Spencer-Warren, M. (1893). ‘White Lodge’. The Strand Magazine, An Illustrated Monthly, VI(July–September). pp. 229-239.

Thackeray, W.M. (1904). The English Humourists of the Eighteenth Century. London: MacMillan and Co.

Thomson, A.T. (ed.) (1848). Memoirs of Viscountess Sundon, Mistress of the Robes to Queen Caroline, Consort of George II, 2 Vols. London: Henry Colburn.

Van der Kiste, J. (1997). George II and Queen Caroline. Stroud, Gloucestershire: Sutton.

Walpole, H. (2015). Complete Works of Horace Walpole (Illustrated). Vol. 6, Series SixUSA: Delphi Classics, eBook (Public Domain).

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Warner, M. (1979). Queen Victoria’s Sketchbook. London: Macmillan.

White, C. (ed.) (2005). Nelson: The New Letters. London: The Boydell Press in association with The National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, and The Royal Naval Museum, Portsmouth.

Williams, R.F. (1860). Domestic Memoirs of the Royal Family and the Court of England: chiefly at Shene and Richmond. 3 Vols. London: Hurst and Blackett.

Wood, R. (2016). Unpublished research for the Hearsum Trust, the Friends of Richmond Park, and The Royal Ballet School, White Lodge in Richmond Park, London.

Woodcock, S. (1989). ‘Margaret Rolfe’s Memoirs of Marie Taglioni: Part 1’. Dance Research: The Journal of the Society for Dance Research, 7(1), pp. 3-19.

Woodward, K. (1927). Queen Mary: A Life and Intimate Study. London: Hutchinson.

Wundran, M., Pape, T. (2008) Andrea Palladio, Architect Between the Renaissance and the Baroque. Cologne: Taschen.

 

Online Resources:

Antiquarian bookseller: www.sophiedupreautographs.com. (Sophie Dupré Collection: 2 sides 8vo, White Lodge, Richmond Park, 29 May, 1873). Correspondence Arthur Wellesley, 2nd Duke of Wellington.

Hearsum Collection website (2015): What’s in a Name? Features of Richmond Park. Max Lankester

http://hearsumcollection.org.uk/deer-in-the-city/whats-on/test/richmond-park-and-the-first-world-war/

 

The London Gazette online: www.thegazette.co.uk

Rachel Knowles online: regencyhistory.net/2014/02/queen-charlottes-cottage-regency

The Royal Parks Guild online: www.trpg.org.uk

Spehnjak, K. (2005). ‘Josip Broz Tito’s visit to Great Britain in 1953’. Review of Croatian History, 1(1), pp. 295-320.

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, online version (2004–2015):

            Chamberlain, Muriel E, ‘Addington, Henry Unwin (1790–1870)’.

            Purdue, A W, ‘George III, daughters of (act. 1766–1857)’.

            Rodger, N A M, ‘Nelson, Horatio, Viscount Nelson (1758–1805)’.

            Taylor, Stephen, ‘Caroline (1683–1737)’.

            Taylor, Stephen, ‘Walpole, Robert, first earl of Orford (1676–1745)’.

Wickimedia/commons; Flickr; Creative Commons; Microcosm of London (images in the public domain)

 

Other Sources:

The Wellington Archive, Stratfield Saye Estate, Archivist to the Duke of Wellington:

[email protected]

 

 

 

 

 

Contact

The Royal Ballet School’s White Lodge History Timeline is an ongoing project.

We would greatly welcome your comments on our White Lodge History Timeline. We would also like to hear about any other information or material that you know of, which relates to the story of this wonderful building. Please fill out the contact form below or you can email us. Please be aware, however, that we are normally unable to enter into individual discussions concerning the 'Timeline' project.