Prince Regent's collection makes temporary return to Royal Pavilion

Art and furniture which belonged to the Prince Regent will be displayed at its original home next year '“ at the Royal Pavilion in Brighton.

Original items from the Royal Pavilion, Brighton, will return home on loan
Original items from the Royal Pavilion, Brighton, will return home on loan

The Brighton palace was built for Prince Regent – who later became King George IV – in the 19th century, but many of its contents were removed when Queen Victoria took ownership of the building.

Now, a major collection of original Royal Pavilion decorative art and furniture will be returned to the building on loan by the Royal Collection Trust.

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The loan will be for three years while essential maintenance of Buckingham Palace takes place.

The Royal Pavilion was this week visited by the Duke and Duchess of Sussex on their first official trip to the county together.

Related stories: Harry and Meghan greeted by Brighton schoolchildren on Royal Pavilion visitOpulent saloon room at the Royal Pavilion revealed after restorationDavid Beevers, keeper of the Royal Pavilion, said: “We are thrilled to have so many pieces which were commissioned by George IV for the Royal Pavilion to be on display here.

“They are beautiful items with a wonderful history linking them to the Pavilion. We are so grateful to the Royal Collection Trust for giving us this opportunity to display them in their original setting as they were nearly two hundred years ago.”

Visitors to the Royal Pavilion will be able to see: porcelain pagodas originally placed in the Music Room; a Kylin Clock, partly made in France and partly in England from Chinese and Japanese elements for the Saloon; and the French-designed Rock Clock from the Music Room.

The porcelain pagoda originally situated in the Music Room of the Royal Pavilion, Brighton & Hove. (Credit: Royal Collection Trust /© Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2018)

All the items were originally acquired by the Prince Regent, who later became King George IV, for his exotic Brighton residence.

George IV lavishly decorated his seaside home, and chose Chinese ceramics mounted in France and England with gilt-bronze mounts, Chinese export porcelain and furniture, and English and European furniture in exotic styles.

The contents of the Pavilion were moved to London by Queen Victoria in 1847, on the sale of the residence to the Town of Brighton.

On the instruction of Prince Albert, many of the furnishings and fittings from the Royal Pavilion were incorporated into the new spaces at the Palace, particularly the Chinese-themed interiors of the Centre Room, the Yellow Drawing Room and the Chinese Dining Room. These rooms are used by the Royal family to host charitable events.

Harry and Meghan at the Royal Pavilion, Brighton

More than 3,000 works of art and items of functional furniture, all part of the Royal Collection will be removed this autumn from Buckingham Palace in preparation for maintenance work to begin next year.

Cllr Alan Robins, chair of the tourism, development and culture committee of Brighton and Hove Council, said; “We are delighted to receive this generous loan from the Royal Collection Trust. I’m sure many of our residents and visitors to the city will be keen to see these splendid pieces in the ideal setting of the Royal Pavilion.”

Tim Knox, director of the Royal Collection, said: “Decanting an entire wing of an historic building on the scale of Buckingham Palace is a huge undertaking and requires meticulous planning. We are delighted that up to 150 items will return on loan to Brighton’s Royal Pavilion next summer, so that visitors can enjoy these extraordinary works in their original home.”

The French-designed Rock Clock from the Music Room (Credit: Royal Collection Trust /© Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2018)