Hampton Court Palace

Hampton Court Palace

Aeriel Image of Hampton Court Palace

A building history

It is perhaps easiest to think of Hampton Court as the ‘story of two palaces’: a Tudor palace, established by Cardinal Wolsey and made even more magnificent by Henry VIII, alongside a baroque palace built by William III and Mary II.



A history of Hampton Court's development...

  1. Origins
    From a large barn to a courtier's country house
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  2. Cardinal’s works
    Wolsey transforms, then loses Hampton Court Palace
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  3. Magnificent Henry
    Henry VIII was famously prolific in marriage, but he was also in palace building. In just ten years he spent more than £62,000 rebuilding and extending Hampton Court. This vast sum would be worth approximately £18 million today.
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  4. Henry
    Henry VIII’s three children all stayed at Hampton Court. Indeed, Edward had been christened in the Chapel Royal at the palace in 1537, and Mary spent her honeymoon here in 1554.
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  5. The Stuarts
    Hampton Court remains a pleasure during some turbulent times When King James VI of Scotland came south to become James I of England (r 1603-1625), Hampton Court's continuing importance in royal life was assured.
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  6. William and Mary
    Soon after their accession to the English throne, King William III (r 1689-1702) and Queen Mary II (r 1689-94) commissioned Sir Christopher Wren to rebuild Hampton Court.
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  7. The 18th century
    For Queen Anne (r 1702-14) and her predecessors the major attraction of Hampton Court was the hunting.
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  8. To the present
    From grace and favour to restoration to visitor attraction.
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