Victorian London - Publications - History - The Queen's London : a Pictorial and Descriptive Record of the Streets, Buildings, Parks and Scenery of the Great Metropolis, 1896 - Strawberry Hill, Twickenham

Strawberry Hill, Twickenham - photograph


Burke characterised Horace Walpole as "an elegant trifler," and Strawberry Hill as "a Gothic toy." Castle-building was Walpole's hobby, and he gave it free rein when he took possession of this site, on the upper road leading from Twickenham to Teddington, and proceeded to build Strawberry Hill, or "The Castle,'' as its author called it. In the days when Walpole occupied it and here entertained his brilliant circle of friends, the house was filled with treasures, which were sold by auction in 1842 for upwards of 33,000, the sale extending over the best part of a month. By inheritance Strawberry Hill passed into the Walgrave family, and the late Countess did something to revive its ancient glory. In 1883 it was acquired by the late Baron H. de Stern.