Marble Hill House is the last of the great Thames-side Palladian mansions. It tells the tale of its remarkable creator, Henrietta Howard, who built Marble Hill House in the 1720s as a retreat from court life and as a place to entertain her dazzling circle of friends.
Until about 150 years ago, Marble Hill’s unique gardens were just as impressive as the house itself. Now English Heritage is working with the Heritage Lottery Fund to restore elements of the lost gardens of Henrietta’s lifetime, and to improve facilities throughout the park and house.
Discover more about our plans for Marble Hill, and how you can have a say, below.
As a charity, English Heritage provides free access to Marble Hill Park, at a cost in 2016/17 of £285,000. We are now aiming to make Marble Hill one of the best parks in London, and hope that local people will want to use the park and its facilities even more than they do now. The income generated by a new café will make the running of the park more financially sustainable, and ensure that we can spend significantly more money on its annual maintenance.
As part of this process, we’ve recently submitted a Round 2 application to the Heritage Lottery Fund. If successful, this will result in over £4 million of HLF funding being invested in Marble Hill.
Key elements of our plans include:
- conserving the exterior of Marble Hill House and retelling its fascinating stories inside
- removing the admission charge to the house, and opening it to the public five days a week for seven months of the year
- restoring elements of the gardens - particularly the former pleasure grounds between the house and river, and the Sweet Walk on the boundary with Richmond Road
- creating an amazing new café with a wide-ranging and regularly changing menu, and a visitor hub in the Coach House (including a modern extension in the courtyard behind it)
- installing a new themed children’s play area
- improving habitats across the park
- creating an additional 17.5 full-time equivalent jobs
- making significant improvements to the sports pitches and creating refurbished, single-sex changing facilities for the first time at Marble Hill
- expanding our programme of public events to tell Marble Hill’s story to as many people as possible.
HAVE YOUR SAY
Following consultation between November 2016 and January 2017, when we invited local residents to express their views about the project, we have submitted a planning application to the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames requesting approval for the physical changes we want to make. You can access this application in two ways:
- Via our website - www.english-heritage.org.uk/marblehillrevived and
- Via the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames’ website - www.richmond.gov.uk/planning and entering the reference number 17/1094/FUL You can submit your views on our proposals until 18 April, either online or by post to: London Borough of Richmond upon Thames, Development Management, 2nd Floor Civic Centre, York Street, Twickenham, TW1 3BZ
HOW WE’VE LISTENED
During the consultation period for this project, two elements of the scheme were discussed which are no longer included in the project proposals or the planning application:
- a fenced, dog-free area between the house and river
- a wedding marquee area with permanent fixing points
Our consultation showed us that while local residents were broadly supportive of the proposals overall, a significant number were not convinced that these two elements were justified. As a result, English Heritage has decided not to include them in the scheme proposed in the planning application.
We plan to consult further on these two proposals before deciding whether or not to progress them any further.