Kensington Palace in Kensington Gardens, London W8.
In the summer of 1689, William and Mary purchased Nottingham House, a Jacobean mansion built about 1605.
Nottingham House was owned by William's trusted Secretary of State, Daniel Finch, Earl of Nottingham, and the purchase price was £20,000. William instructed Sir Christopher Wren to improve the house immediately.
Nicholas Hawksmoor was appointed Clerk of the Works (1689-1715) and the project was hurried forward, as the Queen was anxious to move in.
In order to save time and money, the Jacobean house was left intact and Wren added blocks, or pavilions, to its four corners, to provide additional accommodation for the King and Queen and their court. Each pavilion was of three storeys, with attics above.
Wren also re-orientated the building by designing a new entrance and service courtyard (the Great Court) on its west side. On the south side of the Great Court, Wren built a range narrow block containing a corridor (the Stone Gallery) which led from the main entrance to the south-west pavilion, with rooms for courtiers behind.
On the north side of the courtyard were the kitchens and on the west, an archway surmounted by a clock tower, which still survives.
The royal court took up residence at Kensington House, as it was known, shortly before Christmas 1689.
2012 - Landscape design by Todd Longstaffe Gowan. Winner of the Georgian Group’s Architectural Award for the Restoration of a Georgian Landscape 2012.
Site & Location
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