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Historic Royal Palaces blog

Insights and behind the scenes from our palaces

Insights and behind the scenes from our palaces

Queen Caroline’s State bed is Back!... on Display

09 April 2024

We are now able to return our focus to the permanent collection on open display across our palaces, including the conservation of the much-loved Queen Caroline State bed, which we care for on behalf of the Royal Collection Trust.

'Washing the Lions': A Famous April Fools Hoax at the Tower of London

01 April 2024

The Tower of London is home to Britain’s earliest recorded April Fool’s prank – the so-called 'Annual Ceremony of Washing the Lions'.

Responding to Climate Change in the Hampton Court Gardens

29 March 2024

As our climate changes, so do our gardens. Graham Dillamore, Head Gardener at Hampton Court Palace, shares how his team are adapting to these challenges.

The King's 'Malady': George III's Mental Illness Explored

22 March 2024

George III had four prolonged periods of illness during his reign. Despite his achievements, he is perhaps most commonly referred to as ‘The Mad King’ – an unhelpful phrase that undermines the extent of his deeply traumatic ailments, and ignores his physical symptoms.

'The new Terrors of Death': Dr John Arbuthnot, Queen Anne’s favourite physician

11 March 2024

Dr John Arbuthnot was among the army of medical specialists who were summonsed to serve the Royal family in the 18th century. Arbuthnot is little remembered today, but he was 'the Queen’s favourite physician' — a gentle-mannered confidante to courtiers, politicians, poets, writers and ladies-in-waiting alike.

The Boy on the Staircase: Peter 'the Wild Boy' from Hanover

11 March 2024

In 1726 the arrival of a 'wild youth' in the Great Drawing Room of St James's Palace caused a London sensation. A boy in his early teens had been found in German woods 'wild, naked… and knowing nobody'. Brought to England, he was nicknamed Peter 'the wild boy'.

A Glimpse into the World of Two Royal Cooks

11 March 2024

When it came to conjuring up the smell and heat of long-abandoned royal kitchens for Untold Lives, we turned to two cooks’ books which won’t be found on today's kitchen shelves.

'Below Stairs' in Sickness, Death and Old Age

29 February 2024

What happened to those who worked in the royal palaces when they fell ill, grew old, or when they died, leaving loved ones behind?

The Extravagant Funeral of Henry VIII

16 February 2024

Curator of Historic Buildings Alden Gregory explores the elaborate hearse created to mark Henry VIII’s death, and how it links to the King’s use of temporary architecture during his life.