Parishes: Kew

Pages 482-487

A History of the County of Surrey: Volume 3. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1911.

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Kayhor (xiv cent.); Kayo (xv cent.); Keyowe, Kaiho, Kayhoo, Cewe (xvi cent.); Ceu (xvii cent.)

The parish of Kew lies on the Surrey bank of the Thames and is about 346¼ acres in extent, the greater part being occupied by Kew Gardens. Kew formerly lay in the parish of Kingston, from which it was not separated until 1769, (fn. 1) so that there are very few early references to it. At the begining of the 16th century it began to have a separate history, when the presence of the Court at Richmond caused courtiers to settle in the neighbourhood. Mary Tudor, in her father's reign, had an establishment there. In 1522 amongst her household expenses is entered the drive from Kew to Richmond. (fn. 2) Some years later Sir W. Paulet wrote to Cromwell that Mary's household was to be removed to Kew after the king had left Richmond, (fn. 3) and in 1537 a yeoman cook serving the Lady Mary was accused of robbery, and was said to be at Kew, 'where the Lady Mary lies.' (fn. 4) Sir John Dudley the son of Elizabeth, Baroness Lisle, lady of the manor of Kingston Lisle (fn. 5) in Berkshire, had an estate at Kew. (fn. 6) Henry Norris, Esquire to the Body, who was involved in the accusations against Anne Boleyn, (fn. 7) also had a house there, (fn. 8) and after his execution in 1536 an inventory was taken of 'his wardrobe stuff,' including hangings, feather beds, &c., some of which came from Kew. (fn. 9) In Cromwell's remembrances, after a note to remind him 'that all Mr. Norris's patents be searched out,' there is another entry to the effect that he should call upon Sir Edward Seymour concerning 'the evidence of the house at Kew for my Lady Seymour.' (fn. 10) This was probably Norris's house, and the same that was then confirmed to Sir Edward Seymour, (fn. 11) who was in that year created Viscount Beauchamp of Hatch, (fn. 12) and who afterwards became Duke of Somerset. (fn. 13) In 1537, however, Cromwell informed Rowland Lee, Bishop of Coventry and Lichfield, that he was to give up his house in the Strand to Lord Beauchamp in exchange for the latter's house at Kew, (fn. 14) and in spite of Lee's protests the exchange was effected. (fn. 15) Another house there belonged to Charles Somerset, first Earl of Worcester, who was granted lands at Kew in 1517. (fn. 16) At his death in 1526 he left his estates at Kew and the tapestry in several rooms there to his third wife, Eleanor, with remainder to his son George. (fn. 17) Sir George Somerset sold the house to Thomas Cromwell in 1538 for £200, (fn. 18) and Cromwell conveyed it for the same sum to Charles Brandon, Duke of Suffolk, (fn. 19) who had probably already inhabited Kew during the life of his wife Mary, the daughter of Henry VII and widow of Louis XII. According to Leland's 'Cygnea Cantio,' Kew was her dwelling-house for a time after her return to England. (fn. 20)

In Elizabeth's reign Sir John Pickering, Lord Keeper of the Great Seal, obtained certain lands in fee farm and had a house at Kew, (fn. 21) and on one occasion the queen dined with him there. The entertainment was described as 'great and exceeding costly.' The queen was met at different points 'after her first lighting' and offered rare gifts, amongst them a fan set with diamonds; while after dinner besides a pair of virginals, 'a gown and juppin' were presented to her in her bedchamber. (fn. 22) A paper entitled 'Remembrances for furniture at Kew and elsewhere for entertainment,' is identified by Lysons as written by Sir John Pickering. It consists of notes of 'things to be remembered' should the queen visit him, and deals chiefly with the accommodation for the queen and her ladies, their 'dyett,' and the rewards to be offered to her attendants. (fn. 23) Elizabeth, daughter of James I, was given an establishment at Kew in 1608, (fn. 24) and John, Lord Harrington, in whose charge she had been till then, was given the chief post in her household. (fn. 25) In the following year he wrote from there to the Lord Treasurer that he could not personally bring the book of accounts, as 'the Prince' (fn. 26) often called for Elizabeth to ride with him, and Harrington was consequently in constant attendance. (fn. 27) A number of other people of note have dwelt at Kew at various times, amongst them Sir John Hele, who was made serjeant-at-law to succeed Sir John Pickering, (fn. 28) Sir Roger Manley, cavalier, who died 1688, (fn. 29) Sir Peter Lely, (fn. 30) James Thomson, author of 'The Seasons,' (fn. 31) Thomas Gainsborough, who was buried in the church, (fn. 32) and Stephen Duck, the farm labourer who became a poet and rector of Byfleet. During the French Revolution, the English Court being then frequently at Kew, many refugees established themselves there. (fn. 33)

Three different buildings have at various times gone by the name of Kew Palace: the one that is now standing; the house that was opposite to it until the beginning of the 19th century; and a huge embattled castle which was planned by George III, and of which a large part was built after plans by Wyatt, but never completed. (fn. 34) The history of the other two palaces is difficult to trace with accuracy. The palace that was pulled down in 1802, and which was then a large house of plain exterior, was the more important of the two, and probably was on the site of the capital messuage mentioned in 16th and 17th-century documents, in which case the present palace was most likely that which was known as the Dairy House. These two buildings are often mentioned together, first in the 16th century, when there were belonging to them two gardens or orchards, a barn, and a stable that had been a chapel. (fn. 35) The capital messuage was probably the one held by Henry Courtenay, (fn. 36) Earl of Devon, afterwards Marquess of Exeter, (fn. 37) and then by his son Edward, (fn. 38) who apparently conveyed it to Sir Miles Partridge, a follower of the Duke of Somerset. (fn. 39) Partridge was involved with Somerset in the charge of conspiring against Northumberland, and was executed in February 1551–2. (fn. 40) In the same year the capital messuage and the house adjacent called the Dairy House passed into the possession of Sir Henry Gate. (fn. 41) Some six years later Elizabeth granted them to Lord Robert Dudley, afterwards Earl of Leicester, (fn. 42) who apparently sold them to Thomas Gardiner, a goldsmith of London, who inhabited the house. (fn. 43) Gardiner, who was one of four numerators of the receipt of the Exchequer, became heavily indebted to the Crown, (fn. 44) and in 1575 he released the property to the queen, (fn. 45) who then granted it to Thomas Handford and Kenard Delaber, the sureties for Thomas Gardiner. (fn. 46) At the beginning of the following century the houses were amongst the possessions of Sir Hugh Portman, (fn. 47) and passed at his death in 1604 to his brother and heir, John Portman. (fn. 48) Sir Henry Portman, son of John, died seised of them in 1621–2, (fn. 49) and was succeeded by his brother John, who, dying three years later under age, was succeeded by the third brother Hugh, then aged nineteen. (fn. 50) Hugh died in 1630; a funeral sermon on him is extant. His will was proved in 1632. (fn. 51) It was probably a few years after this that the capital messuage and the Dairy House became separate estates, the capital messuage being acquired by Richard Bennet, who was dwelling there in 1645, at which date he was presented to Parliament as a delinquent. (fn. 52) He was acquitted, however, and discharged from sequestration in November 1647. (fn. 53) In the following year he bought various lands in Kew from Robert Kerr, Earl of Ancram, who had purchased them from Sir William Portman in 1633. (fn. 54)

Portman. Or a fleur de lis azure.

Richard Bennet's daughter, Dorothy, inherited the Kew estate which she brought in marriage to Henry, Lord Capell of Tewkesbury. (fn. 55) In 1683 John Evelyn came to visit his friend Sir Henry Capell at Kew. At that time the house had been repaired; an artificial fountain played in a niche in the hall, which was roofed with a kind of cupola. Nevertheless Evelyn describes the room as melancholy, and suggests that it would be improved if painted a fresca. Capell had also contrived a cupola in the garden between two elms. This was made of poles 'which being covered by plashing the trees to them is very pretty.' (fn. 56) Lord Capell died without children in 1696 and his wife survived him twenty-five years, dying at Kew in 1721. Her husband's great-niece Lady Elizabeth Capell was her heir. She had married in 1717 Samuel Molyneux, the astronomer, Secretary to George II, then Prince of Wales, M.P. and Privy Councillor, who arranged a private observatory in the house at Kew, from which he and James Bradley made the observations that led to the discovery by the latter of the aberration of light. The sundial in the garden marks the site of the palace, and commemorates the observations made there. (fn. 57)

Capell. Gules a lion between three crosslets fitchy or.

Bennet. Gules a bezant between three demi-lions argent.

Mr. Molyneux predeceased his wife by a couple of years in 1728. Shortly after her death Kew House was leased to Frederick, Prince of Wales. He also appears to have found the observatory a source of much interest, and during the winter of 1737–8 Dr. Desagulier read lectures on astromony every day to the household. His observatory was then described as a large room at the top of the house, where he had all his mathematical and mechanical instruments at one end and a Planetarian at the other. (fn. 58) After the death of the Prince of Wales, the dowager Princess Augusta continued to spend much of her time here, bringing up her children in great seclusion. The palace, which was also called Kew House, had been flamboyantly decorated by William Kent, who was much in fashion at that period. (fn. 59) The drawing-room and ante-chamber of the common apartment on the ground floor were hung with tapestry; the cabinet was ornamented with 'panels of Japan,' designed by Kent, who was also responsible for a blue and gilt wainscot in the gallery. The state rooms were on the first floor, and here the gallery was adorned by grotesque paintings of children in theatrical costumes by John Ellis, the piers between the windows being large painted looking-glasses from China. The state drawing-room was hung with green silk, and the ceiling painted with grotesque designs by Kent. (fn. 60) The Princess of Wales at this time held both the palaces, and about 1770 she gave up Kew House to George III, who purchased the freehold of it, (fn. 61) and moved over to the present Kew Palace, or the Dutch House, where she died in 1772. (fn. 62) George III, who had spent much of his boyhood at Kew, (fn. 63) began to use it again as a country residence when his family became too large to be accommodated in Richmond Lodge. (fn. 64)

The life led by the royal family at Kew was very domestic. According to a description written in the summer of 1775, the king and queen rose at six in the morning and enjoyed uninterrupted leisure until eight, when the elder children were brought from their several houses to breakfast with them. The younger ones were brought to the palace at nine. In the afternoons the queen worked and the king read to her, and once a week the whole family would make a tour of Richmond Gardens. (fn. 65) The house, according to Fanny Burney, who came here with the Court in 1786, was inconvenient and oldfashioned. Excepting the royal apartments the rooms were small and dark and there were staircases in every passage and passages to every closet. Miss Burney declares that on her first evening there she lost her way continually 'only in passing from my room to the queen's.' (fn. 66) When the king's madness finally declared itself at Windsor in the autumn of 1788, the doctors urged his removal to Kew, and this was only achieved by keeping him in ignorance of their purpose. (fn. 67) Queen Charlotte and the Court drove to Kew House on 29 November and awaited his arrival without unpacking their baggage lest they should fail to bring him, and Miss Burney relates how late that night she heard the carriage arrive and the sound of the king's voice talking incessantly and very fast. (fn. 68) Kew House was pulled down in 1802. (fn. 69)

The descent of the Dairy House cannot be traced with much certainty. It has been suggested that the date 1631 over the door is that of a sale to Samuel Fortrey after the death of Sir Hugh Portman. (fn. 70) On the other hand the initials S and C F (Samuel and Catherine Fortrey) and the date 1631 are in the usual place to indicate the date of building, and though the windows have no doubt been replaced and the house was generally retouched in the 18th century, its main features and design are not unlike the date 1631. Samuel Fortrey, to whom the building of it may therefore with some probability be ascribed, was a London merchant, the grandson of a Fleming of Lille, and himself married to a Hainaulter, (fn. 71) whence the name the Dutch House, it being in a Flemish style. He had one son Samuel and two daughters, (fn. 72) the younger of whom, Mary, married first Sir Thomas Trevor and secondly Sir Francis Compton, son of Spencer, Earl of Northampton. (fn. 73) In the following century this palace was inhabited by the royal family, and it was no doubt here that the daughters of George II stayed in 1728, as they were said to be inhabiting a house at Kew 'over against where Mr. Molyneux lived.' (fn. 74) Some time before the Prince of Wales's death in 1751 the Princess Amelia was described as living opposite to his house, Kew Palace, in the house 'built by a Dutch Architect,' which Queen Caroline had bought or leased. (fn. 75) This was clearly the present palace or Dutch House. After the death of the Princess of Wales, this palace was used for the young princes, and was called the Princes' House or the Royal Nursery. (fn. 76) It was inhabited by George III and Queen Charlotte after the other palace had been pulled down in 1802, and it was here that the queen died a little more than a year before the death of her husband. (fn. 77) The palace was thrown open to the public in 1899. (fn. 78) It is a red brick building of three stories and attics; the front entrance is in the middle of the south front and over it are the letters mentioned above, F/SC united by a knot and the date 1631. The north front has projecting wings at either end and the south front has square bays. A distinctive decorative feature in these two fronts is formed by the pilasters which flank the middle windows, square on the first floor, round in the second and with moulded cornices. The windows generally have rusticated joints of brick. There are three shaped gable heads on the north and south fronts and two at each end, but those at the east are plain. The middle of the north front on the ground floor has been filled in flush between the projecting wings in modern times and has a balcony above. Almost all the internal fittings are of 18th-century or later insertion. Those with F upon them and the Prince of Wales's feathers were probably brought from the other palace. The main entrance opens on to a long passage through the building, at the north end of which are the main stairs of late 18th or early 19th-century date with carved ends to the heads. The first room on the left or west of the passage is the library ante-room, which is lined with some good 16th-century linen panelling which may be a relic of the old Dairy House. The library next to it is lined with 17th-century panelling. The two rooms to the east of the passage are the king's dining-room' (south) and the 'king's breakfast room' (north). The former is flagged with stone and lined with 18th-century panelling; the latter has late 17th or early 18th-century panelling with bolection mouldings and fluted pilasters with the bases ornamented in low relief and Corinthian capitals. Over the doorway between the two (in the dining-room) is a carved head, probably of the 17th century. On the first floor is a similar long passage from north to south, communicating with the stairs at the north end. East of the latter in the north-east angle is the 'queen's boudoir' which has an 18th-century dado and a ribbed panelled ceiling with allegorical figures in low relief. To the south of this is the 'queen's drawing-room' which is lined with 18th-century panelling with bolection moulds, but has an earlier frieze with raised strap ornament; the fireplace has inlaid marble work and is flanked by grey marble pillars with alabaster capitals. The 'king's bedroom' and ante-chamber east of the passage at the south end and 'queen's bedroom' and ante-chamber at the north end have nothing worthy of mention. In one of the rooms on the second floor, east side, is a Tudor fireplace of stone with moulded jambs and a four-centred flat arch; the spandrels are carved with shields and foliage; the fireplace is at least a hundred years earlier than the present building, and may be a relic of the earlier building. Some others of the top rooms preserve the panelling and a door or two of the original house.

Kew Gardens originated in the private garden of Sir Henry Capell, the friend of John Evelyn, who is said to have brought fruits and rare trees from France. (fn. 79) He built two greenhouses for oranges and myrtles, which roused Evelyn's admiration, and he contrived palisades of reeds painted with oil to shade the oranges during the summer. (fn. 80) John Evelyn adds, however, that there were too many fir trees in the garden. (fn. 81) In the 18th century the grounds at Kew were laid out by the landscape gardener Lancelot Brown, (fn. 82) and between 1757 and 1762 Sir William Chambers the architect was employed by the Princess of Wales to adorn the gardens with buildings. (fn. 83) In an account of the palace and grounds, dedicated by Chambers to the Dowager Princess, he expatiated on the lack of all natural advantages. (fn. 84) According to him the soil was barren, (fn. 85) without wood and water, it was dead flat with no prospect, and he took credit for the contrivances that had transformed it from a waste into a garden. An orangery was built under his care in 1761. The Physic or Exoteric garden was begun in 1760; the centre of it was occupied by an immense bark house, 60 ft. long, 20 ft. wide, and 20 ft. high. The flower garden, divided by walks, led to the menagerie, a collection of pens and cages of rare birds surrounding a large basin of water. The pagoda was built by Chambers, as well as various semi-Roman and oriental buildings such as the Temples of the Sun, of Bellona, of god Pan, of Aeolus, a Moresque building, the theatre of Augusta, a Corinthian colonnade, and so on. (fn. 86) A good many of these erections were still standing in 1840. (fn. 87) The Pantheon or Temple of Military Fame was erected to commemorate Nelson's victory in Aboukir Bay. (fn. 88) In 1759 William Aiton, author of the Hortus Kewensis, was the manager of Kew Botanic Gardens, and in 1783 of the royal forcing and pleasure gardens of Kew and Richmond. (fn. 89) His son William Townsend Aiton succeeded him. (fn. 90) Queen Charlotte had her own flower-garden at Kew. Mrs. Papendieck relates how the queen's gardener, Mr. Green, was rearing orange trees with great care; but as the queen could not afford to rebuild the hot-houses, and the Board of Works would not, as it was the queen's private garden, the growth of the trees was stunted. (fn. 91) In 1854 George Bentham the botanist presented his collections and books to Kew, in return for which a room there was assigned to him, where he worked daily at descriptive botany. (fn. 92) Hanover House, where Ernest Duke of Cumberland, King of Hanover, dwelt from 1830 to 1831, is now the Herbarium, (fn. 93) and Cambridge Cottage, which used to be inhabited by Augustus Duke of Cambridge, is now the museum of British forest productions. (fn. 94) The Queen's Cottage in Kew Gardens was used by Queen Charlotte and the princesses as a sort of summer-house, or afternoon tearoom. When Kew Gardens were thrown open, at the beginning of Queen Victoria's reign, she kept this cottage and some 40 acres round it for her own use, whence its name. She appears, however, to have gone there very seldom, and in 1897 it was also thrown open to the public. The grounds were opened on 1 May 1899. The cottage, which is thatched, consists of three rooms only, one upstairs and a sittingroom and kitchen on the ground floor. Part of the lands round are covered with thick wood; the rest used to be laid out, but latterly has been allowed to grow wild. (fn. 95)

Until the middle of the 18th century there was no bridge across the Thames from Kew to Brentford. A ferry was granted by Henry VIII to John Hale, (fn. 96) servant to Henry Norris, but the inhabitants of Kew brought a suit against him, in which it was pleaded that 'for time out of mind' they had had the right of free passage across the Thames, and now, they said, John Hale 'would suffer no man to pass with any manner of boat, but only in his boat, exacting and requiring a certain sum for every passage over there.' In reply John Hale declared that the kings had always been accustomed to grant the ferry by their patents, enabling the holder of the ferry to charge for every man and horse one half penny and for every man, woman, and child one farthing, (fn. 97) There appears to be no record of the judgement given, but the inhabitants evidently lost the suit. In 1631–2 Charles I granted the ferry late in the tenure of Walter Hickman to Basil Nicoll and John Sampson. (fn. 98) In 1691 William III granted protection against the pressgang to William Rose and Marmaduke Greenaway, as their services were essential for working the Kew ferry. (fn. 99) Thomas Tunstall acquired the ferry from William Churchman in 1732, (fn. 100) and in 1758–9 a wooden bridge was built by Robert Tunstall to take its place. (fn. 101) This bridge was replaced by a stone one which was begun in 1783–4 (fn. 102) by Mr. Tunstall, whose descendant sold it to Mr. G. Robinson in 1819. A toll was charged on this bridge until 1873, when it was bought by the Corporation of London and the Metropolitan Board of Works for £75,000 and made free. (fn. 103) This bridge was closed to traffic in 1899, and a temporary one erected during the construction of the present bridge, which was opened 20 May 1903. (fn. 104)

Most of the houses in Kew are built round the Green and along the eastern side of the Richmond Road looking towards the gardens. The Green itself is a big triangular space. It is mentioned in a Parliamentary Survey of Richmond taken in 1649, and is there described as 'a piece of common or uninclosed ground called Kew Green, lying within the Township of Kew, conteyning about 20 acres.' (fn. 105) An 18th-century view, taken from a meadow to the east, shows the bridge on the right, a small irregular lake with an island to the left. A road led to the western point of the Green, where the palace was visible, a windmill behind it; and trees, the trunks engirdled by seats, grew opposite the square-built church which stood isolated on the Green. (fn. 106) Some land at the end of the Green was inclosed by George IV, and a meadow east of the bridge was made common, (fn. 107) as part of a design, never carried out, of building a new palace at Kew in place of the Dutch House. (fn. 108) In the early 19th century Sir Richard Phillips described the Green as 'a triangular area of about 30 acres bounded by dwelling-houses,' (fn. 109) and another description of a slightly later date speaks of the 'well-built houses and noble trees' surrounding it. (fn. 110) In the last century the Green was the scene of village sports, such as climbing the pole, jumping in sacks, grinning through horse-collars, &c. (fn. 111)

The ecclesiastical parish of St. Luke, formed in 1890, includes a part of Kew. There are Roman Catholic (Our Lady of Loretto) and Wesleyan chapels in the parish.

St. Luke's Schools (National) were opened when the church was built. For the King's School, see Richmond, to which parish it properly belongs.


KEW formed part of the royal manor of Richmond (q.v.). The name occurs in a Richmond Court Roll in 1348, (fn. 112) and Lysons quotes another of the time of Henry VII which also mentions Kew. (fn. 113) In 1484 the issues of the manor of Kew were granted to Henry Davy, keeper of the manor and park of Sheen, towards the maintenance of the deer in winter, (fn. 114) but this appears to be the only reference to it as a separate manor.


The church of ST. ANNE is a building of brick and stone in the Italian classic style consisting of a chancel, north organ-chamber and vestry, south chancel-aisle, nave, north and south aisles, and west porches and vestry. It stands at the south-east corner of Kew Green.

The building dates from 1714, but it has been much enlarged since that time, first by George III in 1770, and again by William IV in 1837. A plan dated 1805, in the church, shows a very small chancel and a nave with aisles of three bays, and the west porches as now. The present chancel was added in 1884 and the vestry in 1902 in memory of Queen Victoria.

The chancel has a small apsidal sanctuary, each of the three walls of which is pierced by a round-headed window of two lights with a circular piercing over. Between the windows inside are Corinthian columns forming shafts to the vaulted ceiling; the entrance to the sanctuary is spanned by a round-headed archway. The chancel arch and each of the two side arches are segmental-headed and have red marble columns with quasi-Ionic capitals carved with winged cherubs' heads. Over the chancel rises an octagonal lantern lighted on its four main sides by circular windows and on the other four by half-round lights, and spanned by a domical roof covered with lead. Both chancelaisles are lighted by round-headed east and side windows. The nave has a colonnade on either side of five bays with round plaster pillars having Doric capitals, above which are carved consoles; the spaces between the columns are spanned by lintels, above which are elliptical-headed recesses forming cross groins with the elliptic barrel-vaulted ceiling of the nave. The aisles are lighted by round-headed windows and have flat ceilings. At the west end is a gallery extending right across the building and having an elliptical projecting front in the nave; it contains the former royal pews with upholstered seats. At the west end is a porch having a vestry to the south of it, and a lobby with the stairs to the gallery on the north side. Outside is a portico about half the height of the building, with four shallow pilasters against the wall, and having four circular columns supporting a stone frieze enriched with triglyphs, and a moulded cornice above which is an open balustrade. The west wall proper, like the rest of the building, is of stock and red brick, and has a pediment head above which is a small clock-turret covered with cement and crowned by a copper dome; in it hang eight tubular 'bells.' There were formerly three bells by T. Mears, 1838. The parapets of the side walls are plain. The roofs are covered with slates. The furniture generally is modern. The reredos is set with mosaics representing the Agnus Dei. Oak screens divide the chancel from its aisles, and it is fitted with oak seats. The font is of carved stone. To the east of the chancel is the burial vault, built of red brick and stone, of the Duke of Cambridge who died in 1850, and of the Duchess who died in 1889; the entrance to it is behind the altar. In the church there are many monuments to more or less celebrated people; one in the south aisle is to Dorothy, Dowager Lady Capell, Baroness Tewkesbury, and another is to Thomas Gainsborough the painter, who was buried in the churchyard in 1788; a third to Elizabeth Countess of Derby, daughter of Thomas Earl of Ossory and granddaughter of James Duke of Ormond, who died in 1717; and a fourth to Francis Bauer, F.R.S., &c., botanical painter to George III and resident draughtsman at Kew Gardens, who died in 1840.

The churchyard, which is at the south-east corner of Kew Green, surrounds the building and contains many graves.

The plate comprises a silver cup, paten, flagon, and almsdish of 1713, a cup and paten of 1892, and a cup of 1898. The only existing old register book is one containing baptisms and burials from 1714 to 1785 and marriages 1714 to 1781. The book following this to 1812 has been lost.


In 1522 Fox, Bishop of Winchester, at the request of Thomas Byrkis and Anne his wife, granted licence to the inhabitants of Kew to have divine service in a chapel there during the lives of Thomas and Anne, reserving to the vicar of Kingston, in whose parish it lay, all customary rights, profits, &c. (fn. 115) This chapel was possibly the stable described as formerly a chapel and granted with the capital messuage in the 16th century. In the 18th century Queen Anne gave a piece of land for a chapel of ease to Kingston (q.v.), and a church was built at the expense of the wealthier inhabitants and was consecrated in 1714 as St. Anne of Kew. (fn. 116) By Act of Parliament, 1769, the chapelry or curacy of Kew with Petersham was separated from Kingston, and a vicarage was constituted there. (fn. 117) The right of presentation was reserved to the impropriator and patron of Kingston, then George Hardinge, who in 1786 sold it to King's College, Cambridge. (fn. 118)

The living was separated from Petersham in 1891, and is now a vicarage in the gift of the Crown. (fn. 119)


Elizabeth, Countess of Derby, who died at Kew in 1717, left £500, now represented by £763 consols, for the use of the poor.

There is an educational charity left by a Mr. Charles Jones, producing about £7 a year. Lady Capell, who died in 1721, left one-twelfth of her estate at Luddenham, Kent, for a charity school in Kew, or, failing that being established, to apprentice poor boys. She had also left one-twelfth to the Richmond Charity School, and £10 a year to the minister of Kew chapel so long as her family should be allowed two pews in the chapel and the family vault which she had built.


  • 1. Private Act, 9 Geo. III, cap. 65.
  • 2. L. and P. Hen. VIII, iii, 3375, p. 1407.
  • 3. Ibid. xi, 1291.
  • 4. Ibid. xii (1), 661.
  • 5. G.E.C. Peerage, under Lisle.
  • 6. Add. MS. 4075, fol. 114; L. and P. Hen. VIII, xiii (1), 696; xvii, 220 (50).
  • 7. Dict. Nat. Biog.
  • 8. L. and P. Hen. VIII, x, 878.
  • 9. Ibid. 794.
  • 10. Ibid. 871.
  • 11. Ibid. 1087 (9).
  • 12. G.E.C. Peerage.
  • 13. Ibid.
  • 14. L. and P. Hen. VIII. xii (1), 806, 821.
  • 15. Dict. Nat. Biog. s.v. Roland Lee or Legh.
  • 16. L. and P. Hen. VIII, ii, 3769.
  • 17. P.C.C. 13 Porch.
  • 18. L. and P. Hen. VIII, xiv (1), 336; Harl. Chart. 49, A 46.
  • 19. Ibid.; L. and P. Hen. VIII, xiv (2), 782.
  • 20. Leland, Itin. ix, 12.
  • 21. Dict. Nat. Biog.
  • 22. Stdney State Papers (ed. Collins), i, 376.
  • 23. Harl. MS. 6850, fol. 91, 92.
  • 24. Dict. Nat. Biog.
  • 25. Ibid.
  • 26. Her brother, Prince Henry.
  • 27. Cal. S.P. Dom. 1603–10, p. 552.
  • 28. Ibid. 1601–3, p. 27; Dict. Nat. Biog.
  • 29. Dict. Nat. Biog.
  • 30. Ibid.
  • 31. Ibid.
  • 32. Ibid. See Phillips, A Morning Walk from London to Kew.
  • 33. Frederick Scheer, Kew and its Gardens, 18.
  • 34. Journ. of Kew Guild (1906), 287
  • 35. Add. MS. 4705, fol. 114; Pat. 1 Eliz. pt. iv, no. 17.
  • 36. L. and P. Hen. VIII, ix, 479; xiii (2), 802.
  • 37. G.E.C. Peerage.
  • 38. Terrier of land in Surrey. Add. MS. 4705; Pat. 1 Eliz. pt. iv, no. 17.
  • 39. Dict. Nat. Biog.; Pat. 1 Eliz. pt. iv, no. 17.
  • 40. Ibid.
  • 41. Add. MSS. 4705, fol. 114.
  • 42. Pat. 1 Eliz. pt. iv, no. 17.
  • 43. Ibid. 17 Eliz. pt. vi, no. 31.
  • 44. Ibid.
  • 45. Feet of F. Surr. Mich. 17 & 18 Eliz.
  • 46. Pat. 17 Eliz. pt. vi, no. 31.
  • 47. Of Orchard Portman in Somerset, not 'a Dutch merchant' as Bradley says.
  • 48. Chan. Inq. p.m. (Ser. 2), cclxxxiii, 86.
  • 49. Ibid. ccccvi, 67.
  • 50. Ibid.
  • 51. G.E.C. Baronetage.
  • 52. Cal. Com. for Comp. i, 1011.
  • 53. Ibid.
  • 54. Egerton Chart. 306.
  • 55. G.E.C. Peerage.
  • 56. Evelyn, Diary (ed. Bray), 451. When Evelyn visited Capell on 28 Aug. 1678, he described the house as 'an old timber house.' It is difficult not to believe that the 'repairs' must have meant considerable rebuilding. The hall, with the fountain and cupola, was not part of a timber house. The house when Frederick, Prince of Wales, lived there was apparently of brick and stone.
  • 57. Dict. Nat. Biog.
  • 58. Hist. MSS. Com. Rep. xv, App. vi, 190.
  • 59. It was probably rebuilt by him for the Prince of Wales. Sir William Chambers in Plans, Elevations, &c., at Kew, 1763, gives north and south elevations of the palace at Kew, designed and executed by the late Mr. Kent. They are ugly enough to carry conviction.
  • 60. Chambers, Plans of Gardens at Kew.
  • 61. Manning and Bray, Hist. of Surr. i, 446.
  • 62. Journ. of Mrs. Papendieck, i, 43.
  • 63. Dict. Nat. Biog.
  • 64. Journ. of Mrs. Papendieck, i, 43.
  • 65. Annual Reg. 1775.
  • 66. Madame D'Arblay, Memoirs (ed. Austin Dobson), ii, 402.
  • 67. Ibid. iv, 187, et seq.
  • 68. Ibid.
  • 69. Journ. of Kew Guild (1906), 297.
  • 70. Ibid. Lysons dates the sale in 1636, and says that it was by a Sir John Portman, but there was no Sir John alive then.
  • 71. Visit. of London, 1634–5, p. 284.
  • 72. Ibid.
  • 73. Genealogist, iii, 297; Nichols, Topog. and Gen. iii, 32.
  • 74. Hist. MSS. Com. Rep. xv, App. vi, 54.
  • 75. London and its Environs Described (Anon. 1761), v, 260; iii, 274. The author says that the queen bought from Sir Thomas Abney. Lysons says that William Fortrey, grandson of Samuel, sold his house to Sir Richard Levett. Sir Richard Levett, who died in 1710, had two houses in Kew (see his will at Somerset House). He and Abney served as Lord Mayor in consecutive years, and Abney may have bought part of his estate. In a map of 1771 the land between the Dutch House and the river is marked as belonging to Levett Blackburne, grandson of Sir Richard Levett. Probably Queen Caroline leased the property and Geo. III acquired the freehold.
  • 76. Madame D'Arblay, Memoirs (ed. Austin Dobson), iii, 195.
  • 77. Dict. Nat. Biog.
  • 78. Journ. of Kew Guild (1898), 6.
  • 79. Frederick Scheer, Kew and its Gardens, 13.
  • 80. John Evelyn, Diary (ed. Bray), 951, 514.
  • 81. Ibid. 451.
  • 82. Dict. Nat. Biog.
  • 83. Ibid.
  • 84. Sir W. Chambers, Plans of Gardens and Buildings at Kew.
  • 85. Sir Joseph Hooker has made exactly the same complaint.
  • 86. Sir W. Chambers, Plans of Gardens and Buildings at Kew.
  • 87. F. Scheer, Kew and its Gardens, 43.
  • 88. Ibid. 44.
  • 89. Dict. Nat. Biog.
  • 90. Ibid.
  • 91. Journ. of Mrs. Papendieck, 51.
  • 92. Dict. Nat. Biog.
  • 93. Journ. of Kew Guild (1907), 359. The Church House was the earlier home of the Duke of Cumberland, and was revisited by the late blind king in 1853. Hanover House belonged to a Mr. Theobald in 1771, according to a map still extant, and then to a Mr. Hunter, who died in 1812, and was called Hunter House.
  • 94. Ibid.
  • 95. Ibid. (1899), 6.
  • 96. L. and P. Hen. VIII, xi, 1417 (20).
  • 97. Star Chamber Proc. Hen. VIII, vol. 6, fol. 60–1.
  • 98. Pat. 7 Chas. I, pt. i, no. 6; Cal. S.P. Dom. 1603–10, p. 199.
  • 99. Cal. S.P. Dom. 1690–1, p. 345.
  • 100. Feet of F. Surr. Mich. 6 Jas. I.
  • 101. Journ. of Kew Guild (1903), 126.
  • 102. Ibid.; Add. Chart. 16155.
  • 103. Journ. of Kew Guild (1903), 126; Stat. 31–2 Vict. cap. 17; 32–3 Vict. cap. 19; 37–8 Vict. cap. 21.
  • 104. Stat. 61–2 Vict. cap. 100, 155; Journ. of Kew Guild (1903), 126.
  • 105. Vetusta Monum. (Soc. of Antiq.), ii.
  • 106. East view of Kew or Strand Green.
  • 107. Local Act, 4 Geo. IV, cap. 75.
  • 108. The Times, 21 Dec. 1818; see above.
  • 109. R. Phillips, A Morning Walk from London to Kew, 1817.
  • 110. Frederick Scheer, Kew and its Gardens, 29.
  • 111. Ibid.
  • 112. Ct. Roll (gen. ser.), portf. 205, no. 5.
  • 113. Lysons, Environs of London, i, 202.
  • 114. Cal. Pat. 1476–85, p. 408.
  • 115. Manning and Bray, Hist. of Surr. i, 448; Egerton MSS. 2031–2034, iv.
  • 116. Manning and Bray, Hist. of Surr. i, 448; Aubrey, Nat. Hist. and Antiq. of Surr. v, 335; Eccl. Topog. no. 26.
  • 117. Private Act, 9 Geo. III, cap. 65.
  • 118. Manning and Bray, Hist. of Surr. i, 451; Inst. Bks.
  • 119. Clergy List, 1910.