Holland House library after an air raid BB83_04456
HOLLAND HOUSE, Kensington, London. An interior view of the bombed library at Holland House with readers apparently choosing books regardless of the damage. Photographed in 1940. The House was heavily bombed during World War II and remained derelict until 1952 when parts of the remains were preserved.
Holland House, originally known as Cope Castle, was a great house in Kensington in London, situated in what is now Holland Park. Created in 1605 in the Elizabethan or Jacobean style for the diplomat Sir Walter Cope, the building later passed to the powerful Rich family, then the Fox family, under whose ownership it became a noted gathering-place for Whigs in the 19th century. The house was largely destroyed by German firebombing during the Blitz in 1940; today only the east wing and some ruins of the ground floor still remain.
In 1940, King George VI and Queen Elizabeth attended the last great ball held at the house. A few weeks later, on 7 September, the German bombing raids on London that would come to be known as the Blitz began. During the night of 27 September, Holland House was hit by twenty-two incendiary bombs during a ten-hour raid. The house was largely destroyed, with only the east wing, and, miraculously, almost all of the library remaining undamaged. Surviving volumes included the sixteenth-century Boxer Codex.
Holland House was granted Grade I listed building status in 1949, under the auspices of the Town and Country Planning Act 1947; the Act sought to identify and preserve buildings of special historic importance, prompted by the damage caused by wartime bombing. The building remained a burned-out ruin until 1952, when its owner, Giles Fox-Strangways, 6th Earl of Ilchester, sold it to the London County Council (LCC). The remains of the building passed from the LCC to its successor, the Greater London Council (GLC) in 1965, and upon the dissolution of the GLC in 1986 to the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea.
Today, the remains of Holland House form a backdrop for the open air Holland Park Theatre, home of Opera Holland Park. The YHA (England and Wales) "London Holland Park" youth hostel is now located in the house. The Orangery is now an exhibition and function space, with the adjoining former Summer Ballroom now a restaurant, The Belvedere. The former ice house is now a gallery space.
© Historic England Archive
Wootton Bassett United Dairies, 1930. EPW032627
WOOTTON BASSETT UNITED DAIRIES, Wiltshire. The Dairy Supply Company opened its factory in 1908 and merged with United Dairies in 1915. The premises finally closed in February 2003 and have since been demolished to make way for housing (Cloatley Crescent, Dior Drive..). The Beaufort Brewery buildings are visible in the top right of the picture. Photographed in June 1930. Aerofilms Collection (see Links). Royal Wootton Bassett.
© Historic England
100 years of the RAF
No 26 Squadron Bristol Belvedere HC.1, based at Khormaksar, Aden, delivers supplies and mail to a remote location in the mountainous Radfan area of the country.
The RAF Belvederes were involved in combat in Aden Emergency and Borneo (during the Indonesia–Malaysia confrontation).
Twenty-six Belvederes were built, entering service as the Belvedere HC Mark 1.
The Belvederes were originally designed for use with the Royal Navy but were later adapted to carry 18 fully equipped troops with a total load capacity of 6, 000 lb. The aircraft could operate through only one engine in the event of an emergency. In that case, the remaining engine would automatically run up to double power to compensate.
*Some of these images have had some dodging and burning done and have been retouched to remove detritus and dust and scratch marks only*
© Crown copyright