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Apsley House Royal London Walk - self-guided sightseeing walking tour

7th attraction visitAPSLEY HOUSE

Apsley House was built in 1778 by Robert Adam for Lord Apsley, the then Lord Chancellor. Its location, next to the main turnpike (toll) entrance into London at Hyde Park Corner, gave rise to it being known as No 1 London, where central London originally started. Open to the public as a museum, it houses the Wellington Collection.

Apsley House - No 1 London, Hyde Park Cornernumber one london

DUKE OF WELLINGTON

In 1817 Apsley House was granted to the Duke of Wellington by a grateful Nation, providing him with a London residence after his victory over Napoleon at Waterloo. Although it is now run by English Heritage, it is still used today by his direct descendent, the 8th Duke, as his London Townhouse. The Grade I listed building contains the Wellington Museum and gallery which includes over 3000 works of art; paintings, porcelain, silver and the colossal heroic nude statue of Napoleon as Mars the Peacemaker.

Entrance to Apsley House, also known as the Wellington MuseumNo 1 London, Georgian Townhouse

The 3.4m high statue of Napoleon I of France was created by the Italian artist Antonio Canova and took over 4 years to build. Originally owed by Louis XVIII and displayed in the Louvre, Paris it was purchased by the British government in 1816, who presented it to the Duke of Wellington.

There is a bronze copy of the statue in the courtyard of the Palazzo Brera, Milan.

Wellington Arch Hyde Park Corner, next to Apsley Housewellington museum
With some of Adam’s original interiors surviving, Apsley House is the best preserved example of an 18th century English aristocratic town house. Highlights of the rooms which, are maintained in their original style and décor are; the semi-circular Staircase, the Drawing Room with its apsidal end, and the Portico Room, behind the giant Corinthian portico added by Wellington.

Sign posts at Hyde Park Cornerwalklondon signposts
In 1889 Apsley House become one of the first locations in the world to be featured in a moving film. The short film showed horse drawn cabs, open top buses and people walking past Hyde Park Corner.

Visitor Infomation

Apsley House, also known as the Wellington Museum, is run by English Heritage and is open to the public.

Further information:

Apsley House