Massive Boost for Chiswick House

House and Grounds to benefit from charitable trust status which will open the door to significant new funding

Proposals to combine the management of Grade I listed Chiswick House and Grounds in a new charitable trust have been unveiled by English Heritage (EH) and LB Hounslow (LBH). The proposals, which aim to bring long term improvements to the House and Grounds, also open up public consultation for local residents and park users to put forward their views and opinions.

Subject to funding, the new plans will also mean that income from activities in the House and Grounds can be ring-fenced, providing the opportunity for sustainable funding to the House and Grounds.

In a presentation to the Chiswick Area Committee, representatives from EH and LBH explained that a non-for-profit charitable trust would be able to operate purely in the interests of the House and Grounds. The trust would also allow Chiswick House and Grounds to flourish as a sustainable destination for tourists and would improve access and involvement for local residents in their local park.

The planned new trust will pave the way for potential additional funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund, English Heritage and a private donor.

Martin Clayton, Project Director for English Heritage, said: "This new scheme presents a wonderful opportunity to improve the important Grade I listed Chiswick house and grounds which act as a focal point for many local activities. We look forward to working closely with members of the local community to get their input and feedback on this exciting project. This is the start of our fundraising initiative and we hope to have some good news to report back later in the year."

Ann Keen who addressed the Friends of Chiswick House in a meeting on 18th June 2003 and offered her full support to the Chairman, George Nissen (pictured right), and the Friends in their efforts to improve and maintain the house and surrounding area.

She said: “We are lucky to have such a beautiful historical house in our area, which I know many local residents use on a daily basis. Chiswick House face many challenges I will be working with Friends of Chiswick House and the local authority to ensure it develops suitably and is properly maintained”

John Chatt, Leader of Hounslow Council, said, “A charitable trust for Chiswick House and Grounds will bring long term sustainability, in terms of funding and management, and give park users a greater say in how their local amenity develops and improves. The trust will also be able to increase access to all so that everyone can take advantage of this wonderful space in the heart of Chiswick.”

Councillor Paul Lynch, Chair of the Chiswick Area Committee and local ward councillor, said, “Chiswick House and the Grounds are treasured by Chiswick residents, who are the envy of the world. I'm delighted to see that there are plans to restore the park to a state suitable to its great historic and artistic importance. Local people will influence these plans. It is vital that they know how important their contributions will be.”

English Heritage and Hounslow Council are already identifying objectives for the House and Grounds, including;

  • to encourage strong community participation
  • to encourage the use of the House and Grounds as an educational resource
  • to repair the physical infrastructure of the park and ensure a sustainable future for the House and Grounds
  • to restore the internationally significant historic estate (park and buildings), preserving it for future generations
  • to improve visitor facilities and reduce vandalism

Since the late 1940s English Heritage and its predecessors have had responsibility for the villa and the twenty two 18th century garden buildings and ornaments. While London Borough of Hounslow own and are responsible for the park and gardens.

Consultation is currently underway with local groups and interested parties to help shape the priorities for the trust. Consultation methods will be announced in future weeks. It is anticipated that the trust will be set up by the end of 2003.

September 11, 2007

Sign up for our free weekly newsletter

Comment on this story on the

Green Fingered Volunteers Sought For Chiswick House Grounds

Butterfly House could move to Chiswick

Plans for Heritage Plant Centre

Dawn of a New Era at Chiswick House Grounds?

Friends express anger at "disgraceful" state of the grounds

Plans for "Garden Centre" in Chiswick House Grounds

Friends of Chiswick House