Historic Royal Palaces

Hampton Court Palace

Historic Royal Palaces an Inspiration

There can be no better way to get to know Hampton Court Palace than being taken around by staff members of the Historic Royal Palaces who also provided an insight into their role.

Historic Royal Palaces is an independent charity that looks after the Tower of London, Hampton Court Palace, the Banqueting House, Kensington Palace, Kew Palace and Hillsborough Castle. The Queen ‘in right of Crown’ owns all them. This means that Her Majesty holds the palaces in Trust for the next monarch and cannot sell, lease or otherwise dispose of any interest in the palaces.  It’s good to know that they will always be there for the public to enjoy.

The staff’s aim is to help everyone explore the story of how monarchs and their people have shaped society, in some of the greatest palaces ever built.

The funds for the palaces’ and their grounds’ upkeep are raised from the support of their visitors, members, donors, sponsors and volunteers, so you know that your money is going towards a great cause for generations to come.

All of the palaces ceased being used regularly for royal court purposes in the 18th century and the Government became responsible for their management, under the Crown Lands Act 1851. Currently responsibility rests with the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport.

The palaces were first opened to the public in the 19th century, although the Tower of London was open to selected visitors much earlier.

Having loved absorbing the regal surroundings of Hampton Court, I could clearly understand how many of the gifts on sale at the palace and its interior design developed and inspired fashion. Palaces create a magical environment.

Over the next few weeks I will be highlighting some of the beautiful products on sale through the Historical Royal Palaces, inspired by the palaces’ galleries, gargoyles, carvings, ceilings, ceremonial suits, clocks, ceramics, colours, and surroundings and I’ll look at the meaning behind their design.

It will be a royal treat!

Poppy Watt