all gothicism and gold, crimson and looking glass.
Thomas Gray 1763

The Gallery

The Gallery was Horace Walpole’s main room for entertaining and has now been restored to the room which Walpole and his friends knew. The window heights have been returned to their original dimensions and the tall gothic dado which surrounds the room restored and, in some areas, re-created. The papier mâché ceiling has been repaired, cleaned and re-gilded. The walls are hung with a rich crimson Norwich damask (specially woven by Context Weavers) based on the discovery of original fragments at ceiling level in the Great North Bedchamber.

The display of paintings set in the mirrored gothic tracery recesses opposite the windows now consist of a mixture of reproductions of known paintings in the correct positions and reproductions of similar scenes where the original painting has not been traced. One historic painting – A Sea Piece by Samuel Scott - has been returned by loan from private owner.

Interesting discoveries were made when the 20th century wall hangings were removed: on the end wall the names of the craftsmen hanging new wall covering in 1857 are written in large lettering in chalk with a comment on the weather conditions: ‘weather very cold, no fires allowed’. There was also a lot number from the Great Sale of 1842 and marks showing the positions of Walpole’s original picture hang.