The Stratfield Saye House is known to be the official residence of the Duke of Wellington and has been the same residence after the Battle of Waterloo in 1815. This Jacobean architectural structure has been modified many times to match other fashionable house designs at that time. It is also one of the most beautiful houses in England with a magnificent estate and a park that sprawls hundreds of meters in front of the mansion. Currently, the house has been considered a national monument and a regularly visited museum with guided tours around the house and the estate.

Historical Background

The original owner of the house was the renowned Sir William Pitt, the household comptroller to King James I. He had laid down in 1630 the foundations of the house and the stables nearby. Originally, it was built with red bricks which were fashionable at that time. Then, the First Baron Rivers, Sir George Pitt, had redesigned the entire house with stucco that was a common structural material during the 18th century.

The parkland, the sprawling front yard, and the backyard had also been landscaped by the baron to complement with the English garden fashion during that time. It was only in 1817 when the Duke of Wellington had purchased the estate.

This happened two years after the victory of England over Napoleon Bonaparte at the Battle of Waterloo. The estate was a good fit for the duke’s preference, as he desired to have his residence near the Windsor Castle which is the winter residence of the Crown and the royal family.

While the old Jacobean design has been replaced by the Georgian style during the ownership of the Pitts, the Duke had planned earlier to have everything torn down to make way for his plans for an opulent house somewhere in the estate and turn the ruins into a park. However, the entire cost of constructing the house and destructing the old one is something the duke found too great to spend. Therefore, he had decided to simply make all the renovations of the house and lived there.

Since the Duke’s possession of the house until the present day, he had made a lot of renovations, interior designs, and other works in the estate grounds, with many cultural treasures from different parts of the world. He had made his house a trophy over his victory in Waterloo by decorating the house with many French interior designs and decorations.

Present Time

As of this moment, the current Duke of Wellington and his descendants continue to live in the estate. However, the house has also been opened to the public for guided group tours as the house had been considered a national monument for the Kingdom, including the ornate masterpieces brought to live alongside the Duke in this historical mansion.

Currently, the manager of the estate, the Duke’s household comptroller, and the Duke’s family decided to make the estate more known through the technological innovations of the internet and the World Wide Web.

They had planned to create a website with the help of a web hosting service to feature a virtual tour of the house as well as stories of the house, the Duke, and the Battle of Waterloo.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *