After 18 months and £5.95m of funding, from this weekend Londoners and visitors alike will have another reason to visit glorious Hampstead: the opening of Kenwood House.
This beautiful 18th century mansion, managed by English Heritage is the former home of William Murray, Lord Chief Justice and first Earl of Mansfield (whose portrait hangs in the hall) and has been sensitively restored to its former glory.
The great Scottish neoclassical architect and interior designer Robert Adam was commissioned by Lord Mansfield to remodel Kenwood from 1764-1779 adding the portico and library. Particular attention has been paid to restoring the exquisite plasterworkand original paint colours. Together with the addition of copied furniture and and a working fire in the big hall, the result is a successful throwback to the ambience of Georgian living.
Kenwood also contains a small but important collection of Old Masters Paintings including works by Turner, Vermeer, Rembrandt and Gainsborough most of which were bequeathed by Edward Cecil Guinness, 1st Earl of Iveagh who died in 1927 and opened to the public in 1928.
Neighborhoods in London – Hampstead
Hampstead is one of my personal favourite neighbourhood’s in London. Rain or shine, I enjoy nothing more than strolling around some of the 790 acres of Hampstead Heath, marvelling at the panoramic views of the city from Parliament Hill and having a delicious pub lunch at one of the many charming and rustic pubs such as “The Wells” pub and restaurant on Well Walk.
No doubt the reopening of such an important visitor attraction will be a boost to local businesses in the Hampstead area as well as securing the future of this important house for locals and visitors to enjoy for generations to come.
Author Kenneth Walsh – London Relocation