This beautiful place in the Surrey countryside was a party house for Margaret Greville, a powerful English socialite in the early 1900s. The name ‘Polesden’ is thought to be Old English.
This house was designed to impress. From the extensive art collection to the lavish salon, no expense was spared when the house was renovated, just before Margaret hosted her first party here. In 1923, Margaret invited the Duke and Duchess of York to spend their honeymoon at Polesden Lacey and the royal couple subsequently spent two weeks there. Shortly before their arrival a London newspaper took photographs of the house and published a large feature article about the proposed honeymoon venue.
When I visited, the spring flowers had burst into life with snowdrops, bluebells and daffodils. It has a beautiful rose garden, which hadn’t bloomed at the time of my spring visit, but will be full of colour and fragrance throughout the summer, I imagine.
The house had many royalty visitors, and even Princess Eugenie who just married last year, wore some of Maggie’s beautiful jewellery, a tiara in the Russian style.
The gardens are beautifully manicured. A perfect day for a Sunday trip. It is very close to London, on the North Downs, near Dorking.