You might think that because we’re closed for the winter, the house team would use the opportunity to relax and have a well-earned cup of tea. Instead, the last few weeks we’ve been very busy setting up for our ‘We Three Kings’ Christmas event that has now been open two weekends.
The event is not only inspired by the Three Wise Men but by the three kings that Polesden Lacey’s owner, Mrs Greville, was acquainted with in the early twentieth century: Edward VII, George V and George VI. Their story reflects changes in the way Christmas was celebrated; from the popularisation of the Christmas tree, to the first ever Christmas speech on the wireless.
In a change of routine from conservation work, we’ve been busy rearranging furniture and decorating the eight Christmas trees inside the house. It’s not been without its challenges – it took four hours to decorate the sixteen-foot Christmas tree in the Central Hall, including hanging off ladders to string the fairy lights.
We’re lucky enough to have a large collection of Christmas cards and gifts that were given to Mrs Greville by the cream of Edwardian society. These include a brooch decorated with rubies and diamonds from Edward VII and an eighteenth-century Indian chess set from Queen Mary. You can see both of these, and more, on display in the house and online.
To reflect the Edwardian and 1930s theme, our Room Guides are dressed in costumes of the era. You might also spot a royal visitor or two wandering the corridors!
‘We Three Kings’ is open on weekends until 22 December from 11am to 4pm in the house.