Hampton Court Palace long-listed for Art Fund Prize 2010

Hampton Court Palace long-listed for Art Fund Prize 2010

Henry VIII: heads and hearts


To vote for Hampton Court Palace, click here

Press Release

In 2009, independent charity Historic Royal Palaces celebrated the 500th anniversary of King Henry VIII’s accession to the throne with Henry VIII: heads and hearts at Hampton Court Palace – the most ambitious programme of exhibitions, events, displays and preparatory conservation work ever staged at the King’s former royal residence.

Henry VIII: heads and hearts has involved 38 separate and original projects, all combining to create a holistic visitor experience of Henry VIII’s Tudor palace in the landmark anniversary year and beyond. Highlights included:

  • The complete re-presentation of Henry VIII’s State Apartments, featuring magnificent new furnishings, important historic exhibits, and new interpretation bringing the story of the King and his court vividly to life
  • The creation of a Tudor garden, Chapel Court, based on new and extensive  historical research into Henry VIII’s 16th century privy gardens
  • The archaeology and restoration of Base Court, the palace’s great inner courtyard, where King Henry’s guests were ceremoniously received
  • The opening of the Council Chamber to the public for the first time, richly re-dressed and featuring an innovative interactive exhibition encouraging visitors to join the King’s privy council in debating the issues of the day
  • Henry VIII’s Tapestries Revealed - a groundbreaking scientific conservation project involving the ‘virtual restoration’ of one of the king’s 500-year-old tapestries
  • A daily programme of costumed live interpretation restoring the atmosphere of court life to the great Tudor palace and enabling visitors to meet and interact with King Henry VIII, his Queen and his courtiers
  • A series of special events and activities including a Tudor river pageant, the first jousting tournament at the palace in modern history, lectures, music concerts, theatre performances, and Tudor cookery in Henry VIII’s kitchens

Of the £100,000 Art Fund Prize nomination, Michael Day, Chief Executive of Historic Royal Palaces said: “2009 marked the 500th anniversary of Henry VIII’s accession to the throne, and was a milestone year for Hampton Court Palace, his former royal residence. To commemorate the occasion, the charity embarked upon the most ambitious programme of exhibitions, events, displays, and conservation work that we have ever undertaken, resulting in record numbers of visitors to the palace. I am delighted that years of research, preparation and hard work by staff across the organisation have captured the attention of the Art Fund Prize judges.”

Following the success of Henry VIII: heads and hearts, the mighty Tudor monarch will continue to welcome visitors to his magnificent palace in 2010! Costumed live interpreters portraying the King, his six wives and his courtiers, will be in attendance throughout the year, presiding over a programme of spectacular events and inspired activities.

To find out more about The Art Fund Prize for Museums and Galleries, visit: http://www.artfundprize.org.uk/


Further information

For media enquiries regarding Henry VIII: heads and hearts and Hampton Court Palace, contact Ruth Howlett at the Historic Royal Palaces press office on +44 (0)20 3166 6338/6166 or email ruth.howlett@hrp.org.uk

Images of Henry VIII: heads and hearts and Hampton Court Palace are available to download, free of charge for editorial purposes, from our online picture library: http://hrp.newsteam.co.uk/

For media enquiries relating to The Art Fund Prize for Museums and Galleries 2010, contact Charley Sutton at Calum Sutton PR on T: +44 (0) 20 7183 3577 or email charley@suttonpr.com

Historic Royal Palaces is the independent charity that looks after the Tower of London, Hampton Court Palace, the Banqueting House, Kensington Palace and Kew Palace.  We help everyone explore the story of how monarchs and people have shaped society, in some of the greatest palaces ever built.

We receive no funding from the Government or the Crown, so we depend on the support of our visitors, members, donors, volunteers and sponsors.

These palaces are owned by The Queen on behalf of the nation, and we manage them for the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport.

We believe in four principles.  Guardianship: giving these palaces a future as long and valuable as their past. Discovery: encouraging people to make links with their own lives and today’s world.  Showmanship: doing everything with panache. Independence: having our own point of view and finding new ways to do our work.

Registered charity number 1068852

The Art Fund is the UK’s leading independent art charity. It offers grants to help UK museums and galleries enrich their collections; campaigns on behalf of museums and their visitors; and promotes the enjoyment of art. It is funded from public donations and has 80,000 members.

Since 1903 the charity has helped museums and galleries all over the UK secure 860,000 works of art for their collections. Other recent achievements include: helping secure Titian’s Diana and Actaeon for the nation in 2009 with a grant of £1million; helping secure Anthony d’Offay’s collection, ARTIST ROOMS, for Tate and National Galleries of Scotland in February 2008 with a grant of £1million and funding its nationwide tour with an additional £500,000 over two years; leading the successful £550,000 appeal to keep Turner’s Blue Rigi watercolour in the UK; and spearheading the campaign to ensure Dumfries House in Ayrshire and its contents were secured intact for the nation in July 2007. For more information contact the Press Office on 020 7225 4888 or visit http://www.artfund.org/.

The Art Fund is a Registered Charity No. 209174

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