One ticket, four Royal experiences at Kew Gardens
Visitors to Kew Gardens will now be able to experience the royal residence at no extra cost. Kew Palace, the Royal Kitchens and Queen Charlotte’s Cottage are the only buildings from the original historic royal complex within Kew Park (later to become known as Kew Gardens).
Over this Easter weekend (29 March – 1 April) there will be a variety of exciting chocolate themed activities on offer for all the family across the Gardens. Families can also explore the Royal Kitchens, with live Georgian cookery of a variety of items based on the February 1789 menu of George III including the preparation of early Georgian Chocolate. On Easter Sunday (31 March) there will be a traditional Easter Egg Hunt starting at the Palm House and finishing at Kew Palace with delicious chocolate rewards on offer from the Easter Bunny. During the entire Easter holidays (29 March – 14 April) children can take part in an interactive ‘history of chocolate’ quest across the Gardens.
Inside the palace the temporary exhibits focus on dining with George III. Highlights include a stunning silver gilt breakfast service given to George III by his family in 1804 for his 66th birthday and new acquisitions include George III’s fine velvet suit complete with waistcoat, on display for the first time, as well as a precious gold bracelet containing lockets of hair from George III, Queen Charlotte and their 14 children.
Following the paths through the 300-acre UNESCO World Heritage Site visitors to Kew will come across Queen Charlotte’s Cottage, once a haven for royal picnicking. Inside there will be a display of six embroidered samplers (a piece of embroidery produced as a demonstration or test of skill in needlework) that have been made by Fine Cell Work, a social enterprise that trains prisoners in paid, skilled and creative needlework. Outside look for the colourful Chinese pheasants, a reminder that George III and Queen Charlotte once kept exotic pets such as kangaroo and oriental cattle in the Gardens.
Tina Houlton, Head of Marketing at Kew, said:
'We are delighted to be able to offer visitors to the Gardens the additional bonus of entry to the magnificent Kew Palace and Royal Kitchens exhibit at no extra cost from April. A ticket to Kew Gardens will not only allow you to enjoy the beauty of spring flowering, but will also give you the chance to step back in time and experience Kew’s royal past.'
Paul Gray, Palaces Group Director at HRP, said:
'We are delighted and excited to partner with Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew over entry to the Royal Gardens and Royal buildings. Visitors will now be able to enjoy the gardens, palace, royal kitchens and Queen Charlotte’s Cottage as one royal experience, just as Princess Augusta and her son George III would have done.'
So this spring come and experience four Royal venues with just one ticket - Kew Gardens, Kew Palace, the Royal Kitchens and Queen Charlotte’s Cottage all await!
Notes to Editors
For information and images on Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew please contact Rajveer Sihota on 020 8332 5607 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Kew Gardens visitor information:
28 March to 27 Aug 2013, 09.30 to 18.30 Monday to Friday, 19.30 on weekends and bank holidays (last entry to the Gardens, the glasshouses, galleries and the Xstrata Treetop Walkway is 30 minutes before closing.)
Adults £16.00, Concessions £14.00 (prices include £1.50 voluntary Gift Aid donation), free for children under 17 (with an adult).
Kew Palace and Royal Kitchens opening times:
Open from 28 March to 29 September 2013, Monday to Sundays 0930 to 1730 (last admission 1700)
Queen Charlotte’s Cottage opening times:
Open from 28 March to 29 September 2013, weekends only 1000 to 1600 (last admission 1530)
A short history of Kew Palace:
Built in 1631 for Samuel Fortrey, a Flemish merchant, Kew Palace was originally known as the Dutch House. George II acquired the palace in 1729 as a suitable lodging for his three daughters. A year later his son, Frederick, Prince of Wales arrived in England from Germany beginning his and his wife Augusta’s, long connection with Kew.
The prince employed the architect William Kent to remodel the White House, since demolished, a large residence opposite Kew Palace, before laying the foundations for the botanic gardens. After Frederick’s sudden death, Augusta continued to develop the ambitious nine-acre royal gardens around the palace. With William Chamber, her architect, and William Aiton, her gardener, she established the great gardens of Kew.
Historic Royal Palaces:
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 (registered charity number 1068852).
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.
The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew:
The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew is a world famous scientific organisation, internationally respected for its outstanding living collection of plants and world-class Herbarium as well as its scientific expertise in plant diversity, conservation and sustainable development in the UK and around the world.
Kew Gardens is a major international visitor attraction. Its landscaped 132 hectares and RBG Kew’s country estate, Wakehurst Place, attract over 1.5 visits every year. Kew was made a UNESCO World Heritage Site in July 2003 and celebrated its 250th anniversary in 2009. Wakehurst Place is home to Kew's Millennium Seed Bank, the largest wild plant seed bank in the world.
Kew receives approximately half its funding from Government through the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra). Further funding needed to support Kew’s vital work comes from donors, membership and commercial activity including ticket sales.