The Napoleonic Wars, although fought on the continent, had a significant impact on country estates such as Weston and throughout the week we will be exploring the conflict through remarkable items in the collection plus a special exhibition in the Granary Art Gallery with a special admission price of 200p to the Park & Gardens.
Weston’s links begin with the younger son of the 1st Earl of Bradford, the Hon. Orlando Bridgeman, who was ADC to 1st Viscount Hill, one of the Duke of Wellington’s key generals and continue through to the funeral of the Iron Duke himself.
During the week, visitors to the estate can follow a Waterloo House Trail which, from room to room, tells the story of the wars through the items in Weston’s internationally important collection including the Wellington Banners, bearing the Duke’s coat of arms. The banners were part of the regalia for the horses that drew the great hearse of the Duke and were a gift from Queen Victoria to the 3rd Earl of Bradford as a thank you for assisting in the funeral arrangements. From pictures to furniture, connections to the story of Waterloo are reflected throughout the House.
Over in the Granary Art Gallery there is a small exhibition, with two special works on loan from a private collection. George Richmond’s 1835 portrait of Lord Hill, which has not been seen in public for many years, is a sensitive painting in watercolour whilst hanging next to it is the less than reverent satirical view of Hill and his abilities by the cartoonist Paul Pry.
Waterloo 200 Week runs from Monday 1st to Friday 5th June with admission to the Park & Gardens at the special price of £2. Admission to the House + Waterloo trail is £2.
The Granary Art Gallery is open daily and is free to enter.