Chatsworth sparkles following biggest restoration for 200 year.
The 10-year long programme, costing more than £32m, has seen Chatsworth restored to its full glory, inside and out.
With its gold leaf and pale yellow stonework glinting in the spring sunshine, Chatsworth reopened to visitors in 2018, completing the biggest restoration and conservation of the house, garden and park since the 1820s.
The seven ages of Chatsworth
1. Bess of Hardwick - the Tudor powerbroker built the original house and added the hunting lodge in the 1570s.
2. 1st Duke (1640-1707) - various facades were rebuilt to form the core square (south and State Apartments 1686, then east and Painted Hall, then west then north) and the very French looking patterned formal parterre gardens – in 1702 he moved a hill to put in the Canal Pond.
3. 4th Duke (1720 – 1764) - demolishes and rebuilds stables and moves Edensor village to create the park. In 1762 he alters the river Derwent and subsequent work by Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown changes the landscape. He also built new stables in 1763 which are still used today.
4. 6th Duke (1790 – 1858) - added the North Wing which includes the Sculpture Gallery, Belvedere and what was the Ballroom, now the Theatre. He enlisted Joseph Paxton as Head Gardener who created the Great Conservatory, Emperor Fountain, the lake to feed it and the Rockery.
5. 9th Duke (1868 – 1938) - moved into the house in 1908, installed a new drainage system and upgraded bedrooms and bathrooms. The 9th Duke and Duchess Evelyn had a lot of children and Chatsworth became a home to young children for the first time since the 1790s. After the First World War Chatsworth’s decline included blowing up the Great Conservatory.
6. 11th Duke – and Duchess Deborah moved to Chatsworth in 1959 and introduced many changes to make Chatsworth a visitor attraction. Changes include alterations to the visitor route through the house; creation of the farming and forestry exhibition, now the farmyard and adventure playground; planting of the kitchen garden from what had been maintenance areas.
7. 12th Duke – undertakes a major estate survey and launches the biggest restoration of the house, garden and parkland since the 1820s.
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