It was an early morning start on April 26th. for those members who travelled by coach to visit Hampton Court. It was a fascinating and informative day,well planned and well led by our two very knowledgeable and enthusiastic guides. The early start ensured that we had plenty of time to view the Palace. We entered through the main door and ascended the very imposing stairway
We were then taken into William III.’s apartments.
The Guardroom had a remarkable collection of weapons displayed around the room in fascinating patterns.
In the official throne room, the Chair of Estate was under its formal canopy. It was here that the courtiers would have audience with the King.
Through the windows we were able to see the privy garden – restored to how it would have been for William 3rd. in 1702, although he died before it was finished.
On the stairs our attention was drawn to the fascinating graffiti dating from the Tudor times.
We were taken into the Chapel Royal which has been in continuous use for 450 years. The ceiling is outstandingly rich and colourful and is the grand culmination of Tudor interiors. Kings and Queens used the private pew which looks down on the main body of the chapel.
On display was a replica of Henry’s crown
In the Wolsey Room we saw the magnificent painting ‘Field of the Cloth of Gold’ which shows the meeting between Henry VIII and Frances Ist which took place near Calais in June 1520. The painting was so named because of the sumptuous materials used for the tents. It was not the work of just one artist but of several, and is considered a fairly accurate representation.
The most enjoyable and informative day ended with a very welcome cup of tea and a gentle journey home.