With the death of Diana, Princess of Wales, in 1997, Kensington Palace, her London home, became known throughout the world. But as an architectural gem, a repository of great works of art, a favoured home of kings and queens, the scene of many major events in English history, for many it remains to be discovered.
In 1689 King William III and his wife, Mary, bought the modest early 17th century house from the Earl of Nottingham. Under them and their successors the greatest architects and craftsmen in Britain, including Christopher Wren, Nicholas Hawksmoor and William Kent, transformed it into a royal palace complete with magnificent gardens. But for all its splendour and importance, the architecture and history of Kensington Palace reflect its use for the more private side of royal life: here the monarch retreated from government and the court and instead the royal family enjoyed their house and gardens in an atmosphere of relative informality.
Beautifully illustrated with antiquarian material, paintings, historic plans, new photography and specially prepared reconstructions, The official illustrated history tells the fascinating story of Kensington Palace from its origins to the present day.
Paperback with flaps, 128 pages, 28.5 x 23cm.