06 May 2013

Historic buildings at Kew Gardens

Queen Charlotte's cottage is open at weekends -
It was built for her in "the German style" because she was homesick - she had come to England at the age of 17 to marry King George II. The cottage was used for picnics in the 18th century.

Downstairs is a room lined with prints mounted on board and framed with printed paper frames -
Upstairs is "the bamboo room", from which the river would have been visible (trees have grown up since). The furniture is bamboo-style -
and the bamboo theme extends to the painting, and even the door frames -
A temporary exhibition is a collection of embroideries showing the history of the royal connection with Kew Gardens, stitched by Fine Cell Work -
The Pagoda - built in 1762, and nearly 50m high - is now closed to the public, but here's a man who has climbed it, back when he was a lad -
Not quite a historic building, this disused gate shows the old turnstiles where you put in a penny to enter the gardens, way back when -
The entrance fee is now £16 - about the same as some blockbuster museum exhibitions. It now includes entry to Kew Palace, which was beautifully restored and reopened in 2006.

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