On sold-out days there will be a limited number of general admission tickets available for purchase on-site

When

  • Open daily

Ticketing info

Included in palace admission

A striking residence for art

The largest and longest of the state apartments at Kensington Palace, the King's Gallery, looks almost exactly as it did when it was transformed for King George I in 1725.

Red damask, fine oak joinery, a new marble chimneypiece, carved overmantel and new door cases were inserted by William Kent. Kent and his assistants also painted the seven large ceiling canvases which show scenes from the life of Ulysses.

The King's Gallery was used for exercise as well as displaying pictures. At the east end, it is dominated by a copy of van Dyck’s noble portrait of Charles I on horseback.

Secrets of the King's Gallery at Kensington Palace

The gallery was built for William III as an addition to Sir Christopher Wren's original design. It was hung with green velvet and William would meet with his spies and plan military campaigns here.

This room saw many intimate moments. It was here that William played soldiers with his little nephew and intended heir, the Duke of Gloucester. It was also here that the King died from pneumonia after falling from his horse at Hampton Court Palace.

Staying one step ahead

The dial positioned over the gallery's fireplace was connected to a wind vane on the roof. This enabled King William to see which way the wind was blowing, where his navy was likely to be heading and when the posts were likely to arrive. Incredibly, it is still in working order today.

I particularly like the way the map on the wind dial rather arrogantly shows Great Britain the same size of France. That was wishful thinking – of course it’s much smaller!

Lucy Worsley, Chief Curator

Explore what's on

Wilson's Passage, looking south. The walls on either side of the passage are decorated with back vitrified bricks laid in diagonal patterns.

Come along and enjoy a fascinating talk by Nicola Tallis on her newest book, Elizabeth's Rival: The Tumultuous Tale of Lettice Knollys, Countess of Leicester

06 November 2017

Hampton Court Palace

Doors open at 13:45 for a 14:00 start

View of the White Tower exterior

Marvel at the imposing White Tower, a magnificent example of Norman architecture situated right at the heart of the Tower.

Open daily

Tower of London

Join an expert warden on one of our White Tower tours. Explore the beautiful Chapel of St John the Evangelist and hear tales of famous old residents at the Tower.

Open daily

Tower of London

from 10.45, 12.45 and 14.15

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History with the horrible bits left in. Learn all about the 'Gorgeous Georgians' with Terry Deary's Horrible Histories.

Horrible Histories: Gorgeous Georgians

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