DiCamillo Companion

Londonderry House (Holdernesse House)

  • House & Family History: Holdernesse House (the name was changed to Londonderry House in 1872) was built, or possibly altered, by the 6th Earl of Holdernesse in the 1760s. The 3rd Marquess of Londonderry purchased the House in 1822 and promptly began a transformation and enlargement, using the Wyatt brothers, Benjamin Dean and Philip, as his architects. The Londonderrys were unusual in keeping all of their ancestral portraits at their townhouse (in fact, Londonderry House may have been the only London house to do so), rather than at their country houses. In the 19th century Sir George Vane-Tempest, who became Earl Vane in 1854 and the 5th Marquess of Londonderry in 1872, owned vast estates: 27,000 acres in Ireland and 23,000 acres in England and Wales; he also sat in the House of Commons as an MP for 26 years. Upon the death of the 5th Marquess in 1884, his eldest son, Charles, became the 6th Marquess; it was the 6th Marquess's wife, Theresa, Lady Londonderry, who was the model for the famous Lady Roehampton in Vita Sackville-West's "The Edwardians." The State Rooms at Londonderry House were converted into a military garrison during World War II. In 1962, as the Hilton Hotel (today the London Hilton Park Lane) went up next door, Londonderry House was demolished. James Athenian Stuart's design for the Londonderry Drawing Room was later copied by him almost exactly at the Saloon at Lichfield House.

    Collections: A large portrait, painted in 1904 by John Singer Sargent, entitled "Charles Stewart, Sixth Marquess of Londonderry, Carrying the Great Sword of State at the Coronation of King Edward VII, August, 1902, and Mr. W.C. Beaumont, His Page on That Occasion" and formerly in the Ballroom at Londonderry House is today in the collection of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (see photo in "Images" section); it was acquired by the Museum in 2003. The great collection of silver plate originally at Londonderry House is today primarily in the Royal Pavilion at Brighton.

  • Architect: James Stuart

    Date: 1760s
    Designed: House, or possibly alterations, for 6th Earl of Holdernesse.

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    Architect: Benjamin Dean Wyatt

    Date: 1825-28
    Designed: Alterations and enlargements, together with borther Philip, for 3rd Marquess of Londonderry.

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    Architect: Philip William Wyatt

    Date: 1825-28
    Designed: Alterations and enlargements, together with borther Benjamin, for 3rd Marquess of Londonderry.

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  • Title: Debrett's Peerage and Baronetage, 1990
    Author: Kidd, Charles; Williamson, David (Editors)
    Year Published: 1990
    Reference: pg. P 762
    Publisher: London: Debrett's Peerage Limited (New York: St. Martin's Press, Inc.)
    ISBN: 0312046405
    Book Type: Hardback

    Title: London Interiors from the Archives of Country Life
    Author: Cornforth, John
    Year Published: 2000
    Reference: pgs. 117-123
    Publisher: London: Aurum Press
    ISBN: 1854106686
    Book Type: Hardback

    Title: Spencer House: Chronicle of a Great London Mansion
    Author: Friedman, Joseph
    Year Published: 1993
    Publisher: London: Zwemmer
    ISBN: 0302006176
    Book Type: Hardback

  • House Listed: Demolished

    Park Listed: Destroyed

  • Past Seat / Home of: Robert Darcy, 4th Earl of Holderness, 18th century. George Henry Robert Charles William Vane-Tempest, Earl Vane and 5th Marquess of Londonderry, 19th century.

    Current Ownership Type: Demolished

    Primary Current Ownership Use: Demolished

  • House Open to Public: No

    Historic Houses Member: No