List of British royal residences

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Location of select British Royal Residences
Red pog.svg Red: Used by the King
Blue pog.svg Blue: Used by the Queen consort
Green pog.svg Green: Used by the Prince and Princess of Wales
Buckingham Palace, the primary residence of the King and the administrative headquarters of the Monarchy of the United Kingdom.
Windsor Castle is the weekend residence of the King.
Palace of Holyroodhouse, the King's official residence in Scotland.
Hillsborough Castle, the King's official residence in Northern Ireland.
Sandringham House, the King's private residence located in Norfolk.
Balmoral Castle, the King's private residence located in Aberdeenshire.

British royal residences are palaces, castles and houses occupied by members of the British royal family in the United Kingdom. Some, like Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle, are owned by the Crown (ownership by the British monarch is by virtue of his or her position as king or queen),[1] while others like Balmoral Castle and Sandringham House are personally owned[2] and have been passed down for generations. Some royal palaces, such as the Palace of Westminster (now used as the House of Parliament), are no longer residences. Some remain in irregular use for royal occasions, such as Hillsborough Castle in Northern Ireland.

The royal palaces enjoy certain legal privileges known as royal prerogatives: for example, there is an exemption from levying duty on alcoholic beverages sold in the bars at the Palace of Westminster and there are exemptions from health and safety legislation. According to Halsbury's Laws of England, it is not possible to arrest a person within the "verges" of a royal palace (though this assertion is contradicted by a memorandum by the Clerk of the House of Commons in respect of the Palace of Westminster)[3] and, when a royal palace is used as a residence (regardless of whether the monarch is actually living there at the time)[further explanation needed], judicial processes cannot be executed within that palace.[4]

The occupied royal residences are cared for and maintained by the Property Section of the Royal Households of the United Kingdom.[1] The unoccupied royal palaces of England, along with Hillsborough Castle, are the responsibility of Historic Royal Palaces.

Unlike the other nations of the United Kingdom, there is no official residence for a member of the royal family in Wales;[5] Llwynywermod is the private Welsh residence of the Prince of Wales.

Current royal residences[edit]

Residences in London

Residence Location Type Residents Notes
Buckingham Palace London, England Crown Official London residence

*The King uses Buckingham Palace for official business but does not reside at the Palace.[6]

Clarence House London Crown The King and Queen Consort Official London residence, grace and favour
Kensington Palace London Crown Official London residence, also a Historic Royal Palace, grace and favour
Ivy Cottage Kensington Palace, London Crown Princess Eugenie and Mr. Jack Brooksbank Current residence, leased from the Crown Estate
Wren House Kensington Palace, London Crown The Duke and Duchess of Kent Official London residence, also a Historic Royal Palace, grace and favour
St James's Palace London Crown Official London residence, grace and favour
Thatched House Lodge Richmond, London Crown Princess Alexandra, The Honourable Lady Ogilvy Official country residence, leased from the Crown Estate

Residences in or near Windsor

Residence Location Type Residents Notes
Windsor Castle Windsor, Berkshire, England Crown The King Official country residence
Adelaide Cottage Windsor Estate, Berkshire Crown The Prince and Princess of Wales Located in Windsor Home Park, close to Windsor Castle
Frogmore Cottage Windsor Estate, Berkshire Crown The Duke and Duchess of Sussex
The Royal Lodge Windsor Estate, Berkshire Crown The Duke of York Official country residence, leased from the Crown Estate
Bagshot Park Bagshot, Surrey, England Crown The Earl and Countess of Wessex and Forfar Official country residence, leased from the Crown Estate

Other residences

Residence Location Type Residents Notes
Holyrood Palace Edinburgh, Scotland Crown The King Official Scottish residence (whenever the royal family undertake official duties in Scotland: primarily Holyrood week in July)
Hillsborough Castle County Down, Northern Ireland Crown The King Official residence in Northern Ireland (whenever the royal family undertake official duties in Northern Ireland)[7]
Sandringham House Sandringham, Norfolk, England Private The King Christmas until February, inherited from the current King’s mother
Anmer Hall Sandringham Estate, Norfolk, England Private The Prince and Princess of Wales Located on the grounds of Sandringham House. Wedding gift from Elizabeth II to Prince William and Catherine[8]
Balmoral Castle Aberdeenshire, Scotland Private The King August and September, inherited from the current King's mother
Birkhall Balmoral Estate, Aberdeenshire, Scotland Private The King and Queen Consort Previously owned by Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother; located on the estate of Balmoral Castle. The King inherited the home, when his grandmother died in 2002, while he was still Prince of Wales.
Craigowan Lodge Balmoral, Aberdeenshire, Scotland Private The King Inherited from the current King's mother
Highgrove House Gloucestershire, England Duchy of Cornwall
  • The King and Queen Consort (country residence)
  • The Prince and Princess of Wales
Control of the house was transferred to William, Prince of Wales, when he inherited the Duchy of Cornwall.[9]
Llwynywermod Myddfai, Carmarthenshire, Wales Duchy of Cornwall The Prince and Princess of Wales Usual country residence of the Prince of Wales in Wales
Tamarisk House Isles of Scilly, England Duchy of Cornwall The Prince and Princess of Wales
Gatcombe Park Minchinhampton, Gloucestershire, England Private The Princess Royal Privately owned home

Former royal residences[edit]

Residence Location Royals and Dates
4 route du Champ d'Entraînement Paris, France Duke & Duchess of Windsor (1937-1986)
8 South Audley Street Mayfair, London Caroline of Brunswick (1821)
Abergeldie Castle Abergeldie, Aberdeenshire Queen Victoria to Elizabeth II (1848–1970)
Albany Piccadilly, London Prince Frederick, Duke of York (1791–1802)
Allerton Castle North Yorkshire Prince Frederick, Duke of York (1786–1789)
Apethorpe Palace Apthorp Park, in Apethorpe, Northamptonshire Henry VIII to Charles I
Audley End House Saffron Walden, Essex Charles II (1668–1701)
Banqueting House Whitehall, London Last remaining property of the Palace of Whitehall, now a Historic Royal Palace
Barnwell Manor Northamptonshire Princes Henry and Richard, Dukes of Gloucester (1938–1995; still owned)
Palace of Beaulieu Chelmsford, Essex Henry VIII; Edward VI; Mary I; Elizabeth I (1517–1622)
Beaumont Palace Oxford Henry I to Edward II; 1130–1318)
Fort Belvedere Windsor Great Park Prince William, Duke of Cumberland; Prince Arthur, Duke of Connaught; Edward VIII, Gerald and Angela Lascelles (1953–1976)
Bentley Priory London Queen Adelaide (leased 1846/8–1849)
Berkhamsted Castle Berkhamsted, Hertfordshire William the Conqueror (1066); Henry I (1123); Edward, the Black Prince (1337); a number of Queens consort (1191–1400); last occupied 1469–1496 by Cecily Neville, Duchess of York
Birch Hall Surrey Bought and sold in 1998 by the trustees representing Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie of York. Never occupied by the Princesses nor their mother, who claimed that financial difficulties prevented her from running the house (1998)
Bodorgan Hall Bodorgan, Anglesey, Wales Prince William and Catherine lived in a four-bedroom cottage on the Bodorgan Hall estate from 2010 to 2013. Their son, Prince George (b. July 2013), spent his first months on the estate.[10][11]
Brantridge Park Balcombe, West Sussex Princess Alice, Countess of Athlone; Princess Beatrice of the United Kingdom (1919–1941)
Bridewell Palace London Henry VIII; Edward VI (1515–1523, owned until 1556)
Brill Palace Brill, Buckinghamshire Edward the Confessor; Harold Godwinson; William the Conqueror; William II; Henry I; Stephen; Henry II; John; Henry III; Edward I; Edward II; Edward III (c. 1042–1337; given to Sir John de Moleyns)
Bushy House Teddington, London William IV; the FitzClarences; Mrs Jordan; Queen Adelaide (1797–1849; still owned)
Cadzow Castle South Lanarkshire, Scotland Scottish crown (David I, Alexander II, Alexander III, John, Robert I); Mary, Queen of Scots (mid-early 12th century to early 14th century, early May 1568)
Caernarfon Castle Caernarfon, Wales Edward I (until 1283; still owned)
Cambridge Cottage Kew
Cambridge House Piccadilly, London Official London residence of Prince Adolphus, Duke of Cambridge (1829–1850)
Carisbrooke Castle Newport, Isle of Wight Charles I; Princess Elizabeth; Henry Stuart, Duke of Gloucester and Princess Henrietta; Princess Beatrice of the United Kingdom (1647 – c. 1652, 1896–1944; now managed by English Heritage)
Carlton House London George IV (1783–1827; now Carlton House Terrace, still owned by the Crown Estate)
Castell y Bere Llanfihangel-y-Pennant, Wales Llywelyn the Great, Prince of Wales (until 1284) then Edward I
Castle Hill Lodge Ealing Used by Maria Anne Fitzherbert from October 1795 and George, Prince of Wales; then, bought by Prince Edward, Duke of Kent (father of Queen Victoria), who spent £100,000 enhancing the house (£8.1 million in 2021).[12] His aide-de-camp, General Sir Frederick Augustus Wetherall, bought the house to rescue the Duchess from creditors following the Duke of Kent's death. The house was demolished in 1845 by General Sir George Augustus Wetherall.
Castlewood House Egham, Surrey Leased by The Duke and Duchess of York (1987–1990)
Chelsea Manor London Princess Elizabeth; Anne of Cleves (1536–1547, c. 1547–1557)
Chesterfield House Westminster London home of Princess Mary (1923–1937) – owned by the Estate of Harewood
Chevening Kent Owned by the Crown Estate and used as the official residence of the Foreign Secretary (since 1980)
Chideock Manor Dorset Rented by The Duke and Duchess of York (1986–1987)
Chiswick House Burlington Lane, Chiswick, London Acquired by English Heritage, 1929
Christ Church Oxford Charles I (1642–1649)
Claremont Esher, Surrey Princess Charlotte Augusta of Wales and Prince Leopold of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld; Prince Leopold, Duke of Albany and Princess Helena, Duchess of Albany (1816–1831; owned until 1865, 1882–1922)[clarification needed]
Clarendon Palace Salisbury, Wiltshire Used for hunting trips during the Middle Ages. Now ruined.
Cliveden Buckinghamshire George Sutherland-Leveson-Gower, 3rd Duke of Sutherland
Coombe Abbey Warwickshire Owned 16th century–?; Elizabeth of Bohemia (early 17th century)
Coppins Buckinghamshire Princess Victoria; Princes George and Edward, Dukes of Kent (1925–1973)
Criccieth Castle Criccieth, Wales Llywelyn the Great, Prince of Wales (until 1284) then Edward I
Crocker End House Oxfordshire Prince Edward, Duke of Kent (1990–?)
Crosby Hall Chelsea, London Richard, Duke of Gloucester (mid-late 15th century)[13]
Cumberland Cottage
Cumberland House Pall Mall, London Prince Edward, Duke of York; Prince Henry, Duke of Cumberland (c. 1760–1801; as York House until 1767)
Cumberland Lodge Windsor Great Park Princes William and Henry, Dukes of Cumberland; Anne, Duchess of Cumberland; Prince Augustus, Duke of Sussex; Princess Helena, Princess Christian of Schleswig-Holstein (1746–1803; 1830–1843; 1872–1923; still owned)
Dolbadarn Castle Llanberis, Wales Llywelyn the Great, Prince of Wales (and Princes of Wales until 1284) then Edward I
Dolwyddelan Castle Dolwyddelan, Wales Llywelyn the Great, Prince of Wales (until 1284) then Edward I
Dolphin Square Embankment, London The Princess Royal, at some point or other, but never owned
Doune Castle Stirlingshire Seat of the Duke of Albany (1380–1603)
Dover House London Prince Frederick, Duke of York (1788–1792)
Dublin Castle Dublin, County Dublin, Republic of Ireland Seat of Lords and Kings of Ireland (1171–1922)
Dunfermline Palace Dunfermline, Fife Seat of the King of Scots (1500–1650)
East Sheen Lodge London Princess Louise, Princess Royal (1889–1931)
Eastwell Park Kent Prince Alfred, Duke of Edinburgh and Maria, Duchess of Edinburgh (rented 1874–1893)
Edinburgh Castle Edinburgh A residence of the Kings of Scots from the 11th to the 17th centuries, last used by Charles I in 1633 (now managed by Historic Scotland)
Eltham Palace Kent The Crown (Edward II to Henry VIII; now managed by English Heritage)
Falkland Palace Falkland, Fife Various, including Robert Stewart, Duke of Albany; David Stewart, Duke of Rothesay (The Scottish Crown 14th century –; now National Trust for Scotland)
Frogmore House Windsor Queen Charlotte and her then-unmarried daughters – Charlotte, Princess Royal, Princesses Princess Augusta, Elizabeth, Mary, Sophia, Amelia; Princess Augusta; Princess Victoria, Duchess of Kent (leased 1792–?)
Glamis Castle Glamis, Angus Residence of the Kings of Scots up to Robert II; much later, three rooms were let to George VI and Queen Elizabeth, The Queen Mother
Gloucester House Weymouth Summer residence of Prince William, Duke of Gloucester (later 18th century)
Gloucester House, London Piccadilly, London Prince William, Duke of Gloucester died here in 1805, as did his daughter-in-law Princess Mary, the last surviving child of George III, on 30 April 1857
Gloucester Lodge Brompton
Goldsborough Hall North Yorkshire Yorkshire home of Princess Mary (1923–1930) – owned by the Estate of Harewood
Gunnersbury Park London Summer retreat of Princess Amelia (1760–1786)
Hampton Court Palace London The Crown, since Henry VIII (1525), now a Historic Royal Palace)
Hanworth Manor London Henry VII; Henry VIII; Elizabeth I; also Anne Boleyn and Katherine Parr
Harewood House West Yorkshire Yorkshire home of Princess Mary (1930–1965) – owned by the Estate of Harewood
Hatfield House Hertfordshire The Crown (residents included Prince Edward and Princess Elizabeth; 16th century – 1607)
Havering Palace Havering, Essex c. 1050 – c. 1640
Ingestre House Belgrave Square, London
Kennington Palace Kennington, London Built by Edward the Black Prince around 1350. Mostly dismantled around 1531 to provide materials for the Palace of Whitehall.
Kent House Isle of Wight Princess Louise, Duchess of Argyll (from 1901)
Kew House Isle of Wight Alejandro Combarro Martín
Kew Palace London Frederick, Prince of Wales; George III; The Crown since (mid-18th century –; now a Historic Royal Palace)
King James' Palace Royston, Hertfordshire Built by James I as a hunting lodge, it was also used by his son Charles I (1607–1649)
Kingsbourne House Wentworth, Surrey Leased by Sarah, Duchess of York (1994–1997)
Kings Langley Palace Hertfordshire Used by the Plantagenet to Tudor Kings (1276–1558)
Lancaster House London
Leeds Castle Kent Edward I and Queen Eleanor of Castile (1278); Edward II and Isabella of France (1321); Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon (1519)
Leicester House Westminster Frederick, Prince of Wales (c. 1730–1751)
Les Jolies Eaux Mustique, St Vincent Gift to Princess Margaret. Sold by her son Viscount Linley in 2000.
Linlithgow Palace West Lothian
Tower of London London Now a Historic Royal Palace
Marlborough House London Princess Mary, Duchess of Gloucester and Edinburgh; Queen Adelaide (1837–1849); Albert Edward, Prince of Wales and Alexandra, Princess of Wales (1863–1901); George, Prince of Wales and Mary, Princess of Wales (1901–1910). Occupied by Queen Mary 1945–1953.
The Castle of Mey nr. John o' Groats Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother (1952–2002)
Nether Lypiatt Manor Stroud, Gloucestershire Former country home of Prince and Princess Michael of Kent
Nonsuch Palace London Built by Henry VIII, later dismantled and sold-off by Barbara Palmer, 1st Duchess of Cleveland
Norfolk House London Frederick, Prince of Wales
Nottingham Cottage Kensington Palace, London
Oak Grove House Sandhurst
Oatlands Palace Weybridge, Surrey Henry VIII; Edward VI; Mary I; Elizabeth I (and the Stuart line)
Oatlands Park Weybridge, Surrey
Osborne Cottage Isle of Wight Princess Beatrice of the United Kingdom (1901–1912)
Osborne House Isle of Wight Queen Victoria and Prince Albert (1846–1901). Queen Victoria died there on 22 January 1901. Bequeathed to her successor Edward VII, who gave it to the nation later that year.
Palace of Placentia London The Palace at Greenwich, acquired by Margaret of Anjou (consort to Henry VI), last used by Charles I
Queen Charlotte's Cottage Kew
Queen's House Greenwich Built in the Gardens of the Palace of Greenwich for Anne of Denmark, consort to James I
Ranger's House Greenwich
Ribsden Holt Windlesham, Surrey Princess Louise, Duchess of Argyll; Princess Patricia of Connaught
Richmond Palace London Also known as Palace of Sheen, Royal Residence 1327 to 1649, little remains
Romenda Lodge Wentworth Estate, Surrey Leased by the Duchess of York 1992–1994
The Royal Pavilion, Brighton Brighton, East Sussex George IV; William IV; Victoria (1786–1838)
Sagana Lodge Kenya
Savile House Leicester Square, London
Savoy Palace London
Schomberg House Pall Mall, London Princess Helena (until 1923) and daughters Princess Helena Victoria and Princess Marie Louise (1920–1939)[14]
Somerset House London Queen Elizabeth I; Queen Henrietta Maria
Stirling Castle Stirling Kings of Scots
Sunninghill Park Ascot, Windsor Prince Andrew, Duke of York and family (c. 1990–2004)
Sussex House Upper Mall, Hammersmith, London Prince Augustus, Duke of Sussex
Theobalds Palace Hertfordshire The Crown. James I exchanged it by Act of Parliament with Lord Burleigh; Charles I also lived there; granted in 1 & 2 William and Mary to William, Duke of Portland
Walmer Castle Walmer, Kent
Westfield Bonchurch, Isle of Wight Built as hunting lodge for Queen Adelaide in 1825, now converted into apartments with most of gardens sold off
Palace of Westminster London Anglo-Saxon era – 1530
Palace of Whitehall London 1530–1698
White Lodge Richmond Princess Amelia of Great Britain; George III and Queen Charlotte; Princess Mary, Duchess of Gloucester and Edinburgh; Albert Edward, Prince of Wales; Princess Mary Adelaide of Cambridge and family; Prince Albert George, Duke of York and Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon (c. 1740–1923)
The King's House Winchester Proposed royal residence for Charles II
Windlesham Moor Windsor The Princess Elizabeth, Duchess of Edinburgh, Philip, Duke of Edinburgh (1947–4 July 1949[15])
Witley Court Worcestershire
Wood Farm Sandringham Estate From his retirement in 2017, the house was home to Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.
Woodstock Palace Oxfordshire
York Cottage In the grounds of Sandringham House, Norfolk Occupied by George V and his wife Queen Mary as Duke and Duchess of York. They retained use of the small cottage after their accession in 1910. It was later given to George V's son, Prince Albert, Duke of York and Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon.
York House, St James's Palace London Various royal residents

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Maintaining the Occupied Royal Palaces". Parliamentary website. Retrieved 2 April 2019.
  2. ^ "Royal Property". Parliamentary Debates (Hansard). Vol. 252. United Kingdom: House of Commons. 16 January 1995. col. 301W.
  3. ^ Jack, Malcolm. "ARREST OF MEMBERS AND SEARCHING OF OFFICES IN THE PARLIAMENTARY PRECINCTS" (PDF). Memorandum by the Clerk of the House. Parliament of the United Kingdom. Retrieved 23 August 2011.
  4. ^ Halsbury's Laws of England, volume 12(1): "Crown and Royal Family", paragraph 53
  5. ^ "Royal palace in Wales 'could bring £36m'". BBC News. 15 April 2018.
  6. ^ "King Charles' grand rooms at Clarence House which remain out of bounds". HELLO!. 19 October 2022. Retrieved 25 October 2022.
  7. ^ "Guide to Hillsborough Castle - GOV.UK".
  8. ^ Ward, Victoria (29 July 2013). "Duke and Duchess of Cambridge 'to move into country bolt-hole'". Archived from the original on 2 August 2013 – via
  9. ^ "Prince William's most surprising residences in new £1.2bn property portfolio". HELLO!. 21 September 2022. Retrieved 24 September 2022.
  10. ^ "First look inside the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's Anglesey home". The Telegraph. 23 September 2013. Retrieved 24 December 2020.
  11. ^ "Prince William and Kate revisit former home of Anglesey". BBC. 8 May 2019. Retrieved 24 December 2020.
  12. ^ UK Retail Price Index inflation figures are based on data from Clark, Gregory (2017). "The Annual RPI and Average Earnings for Britain, 1209 to Present (New Series)". MeasuringWorth. Retrieved 11 June 2022.
  13. ^ Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea – Interesting Places – Crosby Hall Archived 13 August 2007 at the Wayback Machine
  14. ^ Princess Marie Louise (née Princess of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Augustenberg), My Memories of Six Reigns London: Evans Brothers, 1956
  15. ^ – 60 Facts, Fact 50 Archived 27 November 2007 at the Wayback Machine

External links[edit]