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St Paul’s Walden Bury

A notable landscape garden laid out in the early 18th-century and the childhood home of Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother.

St Paul's Walden Bury, Hitchin SG4 8BP

St Paul's Walden Bury

Experience this house

History

for the latest information.
Accessibility

House tours suitable for wheel chairs, except not very heavy electric. Single step up into the house. No disabled toilets.
Visitors can sit down on some chairs during tour.

Part of garden suitable for wheel chairs, but there are steep grass slopes. For weddings, arrangements can be made so wheel chairs can exit garden without being pushed up hill.

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The Bury was originally part of St Albans Abbey farm, with lakes for fish. About 1720 the garden was laid out by Edward Gilbert, in the “patte d’oie” design it keeps to this day. The house was built then as the focal point of the garden. His granddaughter Mary Eleanor Bowes married John Lyon, Earl of Strathmore, hence the property came to the Bowes Lyon family. Mary Eleanor had a scandalous life, her story inspiring Thackeray’s novel “Barry Lyndon”.

By 1880 Claude, the 14th Earl, inherited the property. He and his wife Cecilia pulled down the crumbling back of the house and replaced it with the extensive Victorian building you see today. They had 10 children, the 9th being Elizabeth, later to be come Queen. Her younger brother David continued to live here, and his son Simon lives here now with his family.

for the latest information.
Accessibility

House tours suitable for wheel chairs, except not very heavy electric. Single step up into the house. No disabled toilets.
Visitors can sit down on some chairs during tour.

Part of garden suitable for wheel chairs, but there are steep grass slopes. For weddings, arrangements can be made so wheel chairs can exit garden without being pushed up hill.

Does our information need updating?
Let us know here