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Historic Royal Palaces blog

Insights and behind the scenes from our palaces

Insights and behind the scenes from our palaces

HRP Handover: Zeinab Badawi on Sarah Forbes Bonetta and "contested history"

22 October 2020

This week, we’ve invited journalist and Historic Royal Palaces Trustee Zeinab Badawi to share her thoughts on the importance of welcoming diverse perspectives on our past, and the problem with the term ‘contested history’.

HRP Handover: Michael Ohajuru on the Black Presence at the Tudor Court

16 October 2020

We’re handing over to historian Michael Ohajuru to discuss the presence of Black people at the Tudor court, including a figure you may have already heard of: John Blanke.

500 years of the Chapel Royal of St Peter ad Vincula

19 September 2020

Assistant Curator of Historic Buildings Alfred Hawkins introduces some of the extraordinary stories surrounding the Chapel Royal of St Peter ad Vincula, the little Tudor church at the heart of the Tower of London.

Creating your own wildflower garden

27 April 2020

You don't need large expanses of land to make your own wildflower meadow providing cover and food for wildlife. Following the success of our wildflowers at Kensington Palace, this year we planted a new wildflower meadow at Hampton Court. You too can do the same with any old patch of lawn in an open, sunny position.

Long Live the King: St George's Day and the Accession of Henry VIII

22 April 2020

On 23 April 1509, 17 year old Henry VIII was told that his father Henry VII had died, and that he was to be crowned the new King of England. In fact, his father had died over 48 hours before, on April 21! Chief Curator Tracy Borman recounts this dramatic episode in British royal history...

Conservation of an 18th century headboard: Secrets of a State Bed

13 March 2020

As part of our Secrets of a State Bed series, Conservator Viola Nicastro explains the process of conserving the headboard of Queen Caroline's State Bed, and reveals more of its secrets.

Celebrating Hillsborough Castle's Moss Walk

09 March 2020

Although moss gardens are a relatively common sight in Japan there are very few in the UK and Ireland. So it's special for us that one of the best examples in Northern Ireland is at Hillsborough Castle and Gardens! Gardens Manager Claire Woods introduces Hillsborough's Moss Walk.

Mary Frith, The Cross-Dressing Cavalier

28 February 2020

Frith was a 17th-century public figure who caused much controversy and was arrested many times for wearing clothes made for men. In her lifetime it was this masculine attire that saw her labelled as deviant, rather than her alleged prostitution of women and a business that sold stolen goods. Frith was also an ardent royalist. Here, Holly shares a few of the contradictions of Frith’s fascinating personality.

Lady Mary Wortley Montagu: Georgian Feminism, sexual-fluidity and disease

21 February 2020

To celebrate LGBT History Month, we are exploring some of the lives and loves of LGBT+ people at the palaces throughout history. This week we learn from Holly Marsden, Queer History placement student, about the life of one of Georgian society's most fascinating women: Lady Mary Wortley Montagu.