Kensington Palace

    Kensington Palace, which was bought by William and Mary in 1689. The Jacobean mansion, which stood in the 'village' of Kensington was later improved and added to using designs by Sir Christopher Wren. The South Front in the picture dates from 1695. The magnificent 'Golden' gates highlight the entrance and all round them on the days following Princess Di's death was a sea of flowers left by the grieving public.

    Kensington Palace will always be linked to Princess Diana, who lived here for 16 years until her death in 1997. Her sons, William and Harry, grew up here and the gates of the Palace became famous as the focus of floral tributes to the Princess.

    The renovated state rooms are open to the public providing a fascinating glimpse into the secret and public lives of this grand mansion’s Royal inhabitants.

    The Palace has been seen as a cosy, convenient home for members of the Royal family since William and Mary bought the 17th-century mansion on the edge of Kensington village from the Earl of Nottingham and asked Sir Christopher Wren to extend it. William had wanted somewhere to live to escape the “grime of Whitehall”. Wren built four three-storey pavilions in each corner of the original Jacobean house.

    Visitors can now tour the renovated state rooms to discover stories from Queen Victoria’s life told in her own words in the ‘Victoria Revealed’ exhibition; tackle the games of the royal court in the magnificent King’s Apartments; get a glimpse of a modern Princess in a small but special exhibition of some of Diana’s dresses and explore the beautiful Queen’s State Apartments.


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