Address: 149 Piccadilly, Hyde Park Corner, London W1J 7NT

Website

Time: 11.00am to 5.00pm Wed to Sun

Time Information: http://www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/apsley-house/prices-and-opening-times

Phone: +44 (0) 207 499 5676

Entry Price: £8.30 for adult

Entry Information:http://www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/apsley-house/prices-and-opening-times

1000m from Victoria

100m from Hyde Park Corner

Due to its importance and location as the first house on the north side of Piccadilly and the first encountered on the old route into the capital, Aspley House had the grand name of ‘Number One, London’. The house is best known as the former residence of Arthur Wellesley, Duke of Wellington who was a famous military general and twice British Prime Minister. It was originally built in 1771 for Lord Apsley, the Lord Chancellor.

Wellington’s finest hour was in defeating Napoleon at Waterloo in 1815 and in recognition of this, the government gave him an enormous amount of money to build a palace befitting his status. At the time, his brother was the owner of Apsley House, having bought it from Lord Apsley for £16,000. Apsley had it built by renowned architect Robert Adam between 1771-8. Wellington paid his brother £40,000 for the house, a small part of the fortune bestowed. He also purchased a country estate in Gloucester.

The house was finely furnished and had works of art from across Europe.

The nation acquired the house in 1947 from the 7th Duke of Wellington and opened it to the public in 1952. The family still live in part of the property. Apart from the wonderful period furnishings on display, there is the Waterloo Gallery that houses a wonderful art collection with works by Rubens, Velazquez, Van Dyck and Goya. The Wellington Museum displays gifts and trophies acquired by the Duke as well as a 3.5m high nude statue of Napoleon that was bought for Wellington by the government.

The house was once next to other dwellings, but following road changes in 1962, it is now isolated. Across the road of Hyde Park Corner lies a large roundabout which has, amongst other notable landmarks, Wellington Arch and a Wellington Monument. The house is now run by English Heritage.

With nearby Hyde Park, Wellington Arch, Park Lane and Buckingham Palace, it’s a further example of landmarks in central London being next to each other.

Click on the pics below for an enlarged view and use the arrow towards the right edge of each pic to go on to the next.