Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Project 365 ENGLAND Thu 3 Sep 09

Now things are starting to pick up ... with the three of us going to visit Hampton Court Palace.

The sign at the train station.

I have wanted to visit this place for years, and I wasn't in the slightest disappointed.

Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn.
One of the most interesting things about the palace was how they organised so many Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn activities to explain historical information in a really easy to understand way.

The four characters they used were:
* Henry VIII
* Anne Boleyn
* Anne Boleyn's aunt
* The head of Henry VIII's household.

The head of the household was the very first character we met ... and he gave us our first glimpse of how the palace had come to be (built by Cardinal Wolsey), and how Henry VIII came to own it (basically he asked for it).

The 'head' of Henry VIII's household.

And Horace engrossed in his spiel.

They guy then went on to outline the day's events ... which all revolved around the intended wedding between Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn and how we could get involved.

So during the day we got to 'meet' Henry VIII, and later to help select Anne Boleyn's outfit for her marriage to Henry VIII.

Meeting the main characters.

Anne Boleyn's aunt ... she turned out to be great fun, and really good at handling the crowd.

Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn together.

This is Anne Boleyn dressed in her 'traditional' plainer English clothing ... complete with her linen coif and hat.

That pose is imposing ... and straight from portraits of the real thing.

I really liked the girl playing Anne Boleyn ... she really understood her history and period.

Dressing for the wedding.
We missed the start of the dressing but it didn't really matter as all that had happened was that Anne's black outer dress had been removed.

The starting point for her elaborate outfit was the red underdress she was wearing earlier.

Anne's aunt added an embossed red velvet panel to the front and tied it around the waist with tapes, and then added the elaborate gold dress over the top.

Then the linen coif and hat were replaced by a fashionable French head piece which showed her hair at the front.

Lastly, the final pieces such as jewellery and other pieces were added.

Inside Hampton Court Palace.
There was so much to see inside the Palace, as it was beautifully furnished.

Information about Queen Anne's throne chair ... the woman responsible for the magnificient addition to Hampton Court Palace.

What I think is Queen Anne's throne chair, or maybe it's from her presence chamber!

Some more information about Queen Anne ... this time her presence chamber.

The view inside towards the main fountain, where we had lunch, and the lake beyond.

One of the decorative cherubs ... I think this was on a fireplace.

Part of the roof support from the 'dining' room for the Palace built by Cardinal Wolsey.

The tables in the dining room were covered in tablecloths with interesting snippets on information printed on them.

A view of the Tudor 'dining' room.

A family tree of Henry VIII, from an exhibit chronicling his life and the implications of his attempts to father a male child.

Henry VIII's lack of a male heir was a dynastic disaster, but it was also a personal disaster for he and his wife to suffer through so many pregnancies and only one live child.

The staircase to the Queen's apartments ... I've decided I love ironwork..

This is the room used by the Palace guards, and look at how they used their armaments as part of the decoration of the room. This was really impressive.

Clarissa was so goofy most of the day ... I was trying to get a shot through the rooms and she kept running up to the camera, waving and shoving her face into the camera!

A small dining room in the Georgian part of the Palace.

The stairs into a bathtub ... this room had running water.

Looking up into a dome ... the decoration was so pretty.

I finally got a view down a corridor ... although a different one this time.

The Gardens and Maze.
The exterior of the palace--the buildings and gardens--are so beautiful.

There were flowers everywhere, and rolling open spaces ... and the Thames river to use as easy access to London and other parts of the country. The people who lived in this place were lucky in so many more ways than one.

Tbe main entrance to the palace, showing the Tudor facade.

Part of the Tudor palace, showing the elaborate coloured bricks and pattern.

One of the newer facades facing onto the fountain and the lake behind me.

The pond around the fountain is quite large ... with Clarissa and Horace enjoying the sunshine and having lunch.

The view behind where I was standing ... it looks out onto a huge park which was originally set aside for the king to hunt in.

One of the small formal gardens ... on the Georgian side.

A small view of another of the formal gardens.

A larger view of the formal gardens ... this part was spectacular.

One of the borders in the largest garden.

A view across the lawn to the house.

Another fountain in a small courtyard.

Clarissa at the centre of the maze ... she beat me by a few minutes!

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