From My Blog
I’ve been cold, tired and hungry for most of December, but I’ve also been having a glorious time. For the ‘If Walls Could Talk’ series, I’ve been down a Victorian sewer, spent the night in a Tudor bed, worn eighteenth-century underwear in public, cooked eight Tudor chickens on a spit and done a load of Tudor laundry using urine
Today we filmed a scene about the public dressing of Queen Caroline by her Mistress of the Robes, Lady of the Bedchamber, Woman of the Bedchamber, Dresser and Page. I was poor old Caroline, shivering in my linen shift in the Queen’s Bedchamber at Hampton Court, and the Mistress, Women, Lady, etc., were played by my
Our friends from the Association of the Royal Residences of Europe are in town. We had our huge annual AGM at Hampton Court this year, with members attending from the Swedish Royal Collection, Godollo Palace (Hungary), the Prussian palace organisation (Berlin-Brandenberg), Chambord, Mafra (Portugal), Patrimonio Nacionale (Madrid), Wilanow Palace (Warsaw), Versailles, the Danish Royal Palaces and Collection, Peterhof
To my old school, St Bartholomew’s, in Newbury, to present 93 prizes at awards night. The present pupils are so darn clever and hard-working that it took what seemed like hours. It was shocking to find that Mr Sharpe and Mr King have first names. Simply could not bring myself to use them.
My new TV series was announced today in Broadcast magazine. Of even greater interest is the fact that the Lord Chamberlain told me this evening that he’s having his white stick or ‘wand’ of office re-designed, by (who else?) wand expert J.K. Rowling. Isn’t that fabulous?
Been sent some photos from the ‘England’s Past For Everyone’ conference in Bristol a couple of weeks ago. It was a great event, lots of interesting people, and some very freaky archaeological dancing at the Friday night disco.
General Sir Richard Dannatt was ‘installed’ last night as the 159th Constable of the Tower. It was Quite A Do involving ceremony, soldiers, an audience of 600 and pouring rain. For some strange reason Brucie and Tess turned down the chance to host the live webcast, so Tom Sharp, the last Chief Yeoman Warder, and
Last night the ‘Great Henry VIII Debate’ at Hampton Court. I had to argue the proposition that ‘Henry VIII Was A Good King But A Bad Man’. (‘The most dangerous and cruel man in the world’, as the French ambassador said.) Rather brilliantly there was a retired psychiatrist in the audience. During the discussion she
Today the gang (Historic Royal Palaces curators) and I went to the Museum of London to visit the costume collection stores (fourth picture down). (Our old colleague Beatrice Behlen, formerly of Kensington Palace, is now their curator.) We saw the shirt that Charles I wore to his execution, with stains of (possibly) his blood. But