Palace House, once the gatehouse of the medieval Beaulieu Abbey, has been the Montagu family home since 1538.
In an idyllic New Forest setting, overlooking the picturesque Beaulieu River millpond, Palace House was remodeled and extended during the 1800s and is now a fine example of a Victorian country house. Inside, its ecclesiastical heritage sets the grand gothic tone for a home bristling with character and adorned with family treasures, portraits, and memorabilia.
From Saturday 4th July, the doors to Palace House will reopen. Entry to this space will be managed on a capacity basis. To help you plan your visit, we've compiled a list of frequently asked questions for your assistance.
The Art of Belinda, Lady Montagu
An exhibition celebrating the painting, drawing and needlework of Lord Montagu’s mother, Belinda, Lady Montagu.
From colourfully painted house fittings to ornate handbags and bold fancy dress costumes, The Art of Belinda, Lady Montagu - her story in stitches showcases Belinda's work in the former private wing of Palace House.
Restored Victorian Kitchen
How did the Victorians cook and what did they eat? Visit the restored Victorian Kitchen to find out! If you visit during the school holidays you may be able to see Lord Montagu's cook preparing dishes for the family. Find out more
Inspired to create your own dishes? Visit the gift shop to pick up a copy of To The Manor Born featuring recipes from the Montagu family archives.
THE LADY AND THE REBEL
Discover the remarkable story of two women in the Montagu family, Pearl Pleydell-Bouverie and Elizabeth Montagu, whose lives give a unique perspective on many significant events of the 20th century.
Find out more about these extraordinary women with a series of books and films available from the Beaulieu Gift Shop.
Edward, Lord Montagu's Library
With entrance through a false bookshelf door, the library formed part of the late Lord Montagu's private apartments and is where Lord Montagu would play his records. If the windows were open, visitors could sometimes hear his favourite music playing across the lawn!
Costumed guides assume the guise of Victorian household staff to illustrate and share the fascinating history of the building, its treasures, its secrets, its staff, and inhabitants - The Montagu family.
An English Gem
Today, Palace House is one of the Treasure Houses of England, a collection of ten of the most impressive stately homes, palaces and castles open to the public.
Itineraries: Plan Your Day Out
To help you make the most of your visit, we've put together some suggested itineraries with hints and tips to help you plan your day out at Beaulieu.
PALACE HOUSE ON FILM
Palace House was used as one of the primary locations in The Honourable Rebel, a feature film based on Elizabeth Montagu's life. The Dining Hall and Drawing Room are just two of the rooms you may recognise in this fascinating true story of Edward 3rd Baron Montagu's older sister - now available on DVD. Find out more...
Behind the scenes
How do you protect historic furniture from sun damage? What is it like to dust, wax and record over 3000 books?
Find out what it's like to work in a historic house and learn how the Palace House team care for the items in their collection in the Palace House blog.
Did you know...
...Palace House was one of the first historic houses to open to the public?
Find out more about this pioneering historic house.
Palace House is also beautifully preserved and creates a fascinating insight into how life in the palace was exercised. The staff dressed up in costume were extremely friendly and informative.