Who owns Hampton Court Palace and does the Royal Family live there? – The Sun

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  • Post published:February 24, 2023
  • Post category:News

HAMPTON COURT PALACE is a popular tourist attraction in London that is steeped in hundreds of years of history.

The palace was once home to King Henry VIII and has served as a filming location for well-known productions such as Netflix’s Bridgerton and movies The Young Victoria and Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again!.


Credit: Kevin Dunnett – News Group Newspapers Ltd

Where is Hampton Court Palace?

Hampton Court is a royal palace in the borough of Richmond upon Thames, London.

It lies around 11.7 miles south-west and upstream of central London on the River Thames.

Hampton Court is one of 11 royal palaces in London.


When was Hampton Court Palace built?

Construction of the palace began in 1515 for Cardinal Thomas Wolsey, a close ally of King Henry VIII.

In 1529, Wolsey fell out of favour and awarded the palace back to the King who made it even bigger and brought all of his six wives there.

Along with St James’ Palace, Hampton Court is one of two surviving palaces owned by Henry VIII.

Protestant monarchs William III and Mary II took over Hampton Court in 1689 and asked renowned architect Sir Christopher Wren to add to its already-impressive structure.

How do you get to Hampton Court Palace?

There are several different ways of getting to Hampton Court Palace via public transport.

National Rail

Services to Hampton Court run from London Waterloo every 30 minutes.

Hampton Court station is just a 5 minute walk from the palace.


There is no underground station at Hampton Court.

Wimbledon and Richmond are the nearest stations but further travel is required from both to reach the palace.


The palace can be reached by bus from Kingston, with the 111*, 216*, 411*, 461, and 513 services taking customers to the tourist attraction.

Meanwhile, from Richmond, visitors can take the R68* bus.


Hampton Court Palace is situated on the A308 and is well signposted from all major local roads.

Drivers should follow the brown tourist attraction road signs:

  • From the M25: take either exit 10 (on to the A307) or exit 12 (on to the A308).
  • From the A3: take the A309

Parking spaces are limited but there are nearby public car parks, including at Hampton Court Green, Hampton Court Train Station and Bushy Park.

Who owns Hampton Court Palace?

Ever since Tudor times, Hampton Court Palace has been owned by the reigning monarch.

This means that, as of February 2024, King Charles III owns the palace.

The structure and grounds, however, are cared for by an independent charity called Historic Royal Palaces.

It receives no funding from the government or the Crown.

Historic Royal Palaces looks after six of the UK’s most well-known palaces and sites, including Kew Palace and the Tower of London.

Does the Royal Family still live in Hampton Court Palace?

Hampton Court Palace has been home to several notable royals but the family no longer use it as one of their residences.

King George II – who reigned from 1727 until 1760 – was the last monarch to reside there.

The building was then opened to the public by Queen Victoria in 1838.

How do you get Hampton Court Palace tickets?

Tickets to visit Hampton Court Palace can be purchased in advance online or at the ticket office on the day.

Ticket prices vary for peak and off peak visits and concessions are available for students and seniors.

Included in a ticket is entry to the public areas of the palace.

The gardens, courtyards, the Maze and the Magic Garden can all be accessed but customers are advised to check opening times throughout the year.

What can I see at Hampton Court Palace?

Golf club

The Hampton Court Palace Golf Club has been described as a “must play” by sports publication Golf Monthly.

The 18-hole course features breathtaking views and also has a clubhouse where visitors can enjoy food and drinks.

The venue, which is dog friendly, can be used for weddings and other celebrations.

Ice rink

Over the festive season, Hampton Court Palace visitors can enjoy a spot of ice-skating in front of the palace.

A ticket does not include entrance to the palace but does give customers 45 minutes of skating time.

After working up an appetite, skaters can enjoy food and drink at the Ice Rink Café & Bar which serves up Christmas-themed treats.

Food festival

In 2024 the Hampton Court Palace Food Festival will take place from August 24 – 26.

Artisan food and drink producers will be at the festival, as will sellers of hand-crafted and luxury gifts.

There will also be live entertainment and music at the annual event.

Flower show

The Hampton Court Garden Festival is taking place on July 5, 2024.

The event was formerly known as the Hampton Court Palace Flower Show.

According to its official website, the festival will feature “gardens, floral marquees and pavilions, talks, and demonstrations”.

It will also have more of a focus on environmental issues in 2024 and will include sessions on growing your own fruit and vegetables.


The gardens at Hampton Court Palace are world famous and spread across 60 acres of formal gardens and 750 acres of parkland.

Gardens are open at different times throughout the year and visitors are urged to check the opening times of the various areas before visiting.


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