ROYALS, ARISTOCRATS AND NOTABLES
IN HASTINGS & ST LEONARDS 1800~1900
by Helena Wojtczak
Frederick Stockdale ~ visited for health then wrote a pamphlet extolling the virtues of Hastings and its sea air.
1826, 27 and 28
Whilst staying at Tunbridge Wells, the Duchess of Kent took a day trip to Hastings with her little daughter.
The first royal to stay at Hastings was HRH Princess Sophia of Gloucester (1777-1848), who stayed at Bohemia House in Hastings from May to July 1830 and at Castellated Villa, now called Gloucester Lodge, in St Leonards, from August 1831. Sophia was the granddaughter of George II, and the twelfth child of George III, who had died in 1820. Her brother was the reigning monarch, George IV, who commissioned the Royal Pavilion in Brighton. She had an accident at Pelham Crescent on 10th June 1830.
Sophia's brother, sister-in-law and their son visited. The Duke of Cumberland (1771-1851), soon to be Ernest Augustus I, King of Hanover, was the eighth child of George III and brother of the reigning monarch. He had been heir to the British throne from 1817 until 1819 (when Princess Victoria was born). His wife was Frederica. Their son was Prince George of Cumberland (1819-1878), grandson of George III. He had lost the sight of one eye in 1828 and the other in 1833 and was totally blind. He was to become King George V of Hanover in 1851.
The family arrived in 1832 and were still here in March when they celebrated the Duchess's 54th birthday.
Princess Sophia and the Duke of Cumberland had a brother who was Prince Edward, the Duke of Kent. He had died in 1820, leaving a widow, the Duchess of Kent, and a baby daughter, Princess Victoria.
Staying at St Leonards: Lord Carlisle, the Lord Privy Seal, joined his daughters, the Ladies Howard. Lord Somerville, Miss Somerville, and Sir John Eustace. Mr Spring Rice and Lady Theodosia.
Having previously visited just for day trips, the Duchess of Kent and the fifteen-year-old Princess Victoria came to St Leonards for three months. They were booked to stay at the west villa, just vacated by Lady Dover, and two adjoining houses. They stayed at Crown House (57 Marina). The Duchess was the sister of Leopold I, King of the Belgians, who was married to Charlotte, the daughter of George IV, the reigning monarch until 1830. Charlotte's uncle, who was also the Duchess of Kent's brother-in-law, William IV, was the current monarch.
On the death of William IV in June 1837 he left a widow, Queen Adelaide (1792-1849, but no legitimate children. Therefore, his niece Princess Victoria ascended the throne.
Sir Francis and Lady Burdett.
Sir Charles and Lady des Veux took a house on the Marina for the winter.
At Edlin's Royal Victoria Hotel: Duke and Duchess of St Alban's, Earl and Countess Egerton, Lady Davy, Baron de Sternberg, Lord and Lady Barham, Admiral White, Lord and Lady Barham.
Lady Lubbock living here.
Visitors: Lord and Lady James Stuart, Sir Charles Lamb, Lady Montgomery, Sir Howard and Lady Elphinstone, Lady Frances Riddell, the hon Captain Waldegrave, Lady Hotham, Admiral Carpenter, the Marchioness of Lansdowne and Lady Louisa Fitzmaurice.
Madame Grisi and Monsieur de Meli, for a month. Lady Boyce and family.
The newly-widowed Queen Adelaide, Princess Augusta (1768-1840) and suite visited St Leonards from 13th October 1837 until 1st March 1838.
She stayed in the Marine Mansion, what is now called Adelaide House, and no.s 1 and 2 Seymour Place were also hers. The name Seymour House was used.
At times her suite consisted of sixty persons.
She was visited by the Duke of Cambridge, Marchioness Cornwallis, Early and Countess Brownlow, the Marquis and Marchioness of Lothian. The Queen Dowager and Princess Augusta left on 1st March. Augusta was a daughter of George III.
Lord J. Russell at the Royal Victoria Hotel.
The Rt. Hon. William Dundas MP, Privy Counsellor, Secretary at War, Lord Commissioner of the Admiralty, visited, and later bought Quarry House, where he died in 1845.
Lady Theodosia Spring Rice, daughter of Earl Limerick and wife of the Chancellor of the Exchequer.
Another of the offspring of George III visited. HRH Prince Adolphus, the 1st Duke of Cambridge (1774-1850). Adolphus was Queen Victoria's uncle. His wife was Princess Augusta of Hesse-Kassel, granddaughter of George II. Their son was Prince George of Cambridge (1819-1904).
Prince Napoleon, later to be Emperor Napoleon, stayed at Pelham Cottage for two weeks.
Lord and Lady Stoneleigh took Adelaide House.
The Dowager Duchess of Cleveland.
His Highness the Hereditary Grand Duke of Baden, with Count Ebersten, Major Baron de Porbeck, are at the Marine Hotel, Hastings. He was Leopold I, the fourth Grand Duke, and had succeeded in 1845. He stayed one night in St Leonards in 1862.
Following the overthrow of the French monarchy, King Louis-Philippe of France, his spouse Queen Amelie and ? arrived in March and spent five months here, partly at the Royal Victoria Hotel in St Leonards and partly at Fairlight Place. Whilst here, one of their party died. She was the Marchioness of Dolonieur, and her death is recorded in Hastings as Zoe Montjoy.
Whilst here they were visited by their daughter, Louisa, Queen of the Belgians.
On 2nd June the exiled former King of Portugal, Prince Don Miguel, Duke of Braganza (1802-1866) took 'a small cottage and some shooting' in Bexhill. He was reported to have just two male servants (valet and cook) and one female domestic. He was noted there in October.
Victor de Broglie, His Excellency the 3rd Duke of Broglie visited. He was appointed French ambassador to London in 1847.
Banquet for the Lord Mayor of London.
Viscountess Jocelyn, Lady-in-Waiting to Queen Victoria, began visiting St Leonards. By 1860 she is living here permanently, in White Rock Villa, where she had many titled friends to stay. Lady Elizabeth Waldegrave and the Dowager Lady St John and the Hon Mrs A.E. Somerset (St Mary's Villa) are also living here.
His Grace the Duke of Rutland wintered here for his health.
Lord and Lady Lyndhurst
Her Majesty The Dowager Queen of the French, Amelie, stayed at Starkey's Royal Hotel, St Leonards. She was Princess Maria Amalia, daughter of King Ferdinand of Naples, who became Queen Consort by her marriage to Louis Philippe I of France, who was overthrown in 1848 and died in 1850. She died in 1866. Princess Clementine was also in the party.
Prince Adalbert of Prussia visited.
The Rt Hon. Henrietta Louisa, Countess-Dowager of Clonmel, died here.
The ex-Queen of France, Amelie, stayed at the Royal Victoria Hotel for a few weeks.
The Grand Duke and the Grand Duchess Michael of Russia, Princess Galitzin, Prince Troubetzkoy (1828-1900), Privy Counsellor and Chamberlain of the Russian Imperial Court, and Mr de Grote arrived at St Leonards in September for a few days. The Grand Duke was the son of Tsar Nicholas I and brother of Tsar Alexander II; his wife the Grand Duchess Olga was the daughter of Grand Duke Leopold of Baden.
Princess Mary visited.
The Marchioness of Londonderry
The ex-Queen of France, Amelie, stayed at the Royal Victoria Hotel for a few weeks. She was visited by the Duke and Duchess of Chartres and other royals.
In February the Prince and Princess of Wales (the future King Edward VII) and their infant Prince Albert Victor (then one month old) spent twelve days at the RVH. He was the heir apparent and they came for reasons of health.
The ex-Queen of France, Amelie, spent her 83rd birthday in St Leonards.
Lady Caroline Towneley and family here six months for health.
The Crown Princess of Prussia and her children stayed at the RVH for two weeks. She was QV's eldest daughter, Victoria. She travelled incognito under the name the Countess Lingen. The Crown Prince joined her later and they travelled to Windsor Castle together.
Several members of the Saxe-Cobourg family visited, and some of the ex-royal family of France stayed at the RVH.
Her Imperial Highness the Empress Eugenie, exiled from France, stayed at the Marine Hotel, Pelham Place with her young prince. She was Eugenie de Montijo, married 1853 Napoleon III Emperor of the French, Second Empire. Overthrown 1870. A letter in the HSLO of 1935 claimed that her descendant, also Eugenie di Montijo lived in St Leonards for 50 yrs, lately at 39 Alma Terrace, and died here aged 79, in 1929. I found no record of this.
Young Princes Albert and George of Wales, sons of the heir to the throne, spent eleven days here with their tutor, staying at the RVH from 11th to 22nd July. They partook of sea bathing for health, using a bathing machine, and attended St Mary Magdalen church. They were 9 and 8. Albert died in 1892, but young George, then 3rd in line to the throne, went on to become George V in 1910.
Frederick, the 6th Grand Duke and Duchess of Baden, and their children the prince and princesses, took 1 Southsea Villa, West Hill.
Princess Louise of Prussia, daughter of Wilhelm I, Emperor of Germany 1871-1888.
'The Prussian children' stayed.
Sixteen-year-old Princess Charlotte, for ten weeks, March till May, for health. She was Queen Victoria's granddaughter, through Princess Victoria, and daughter of Prince Frederick of Prussia. She left her to stay with her uncle, the Prince of Wales, in London.
The Duke of Cambridge stayed for ten days.
Duke and Duchess of Hesse and by Rhine (Princess Alice)
Baroness de Grancy
HRH Princess Frederica of Hanover and Cumberland m Baron Alfons in 1880. Just a day visitor to visi Mrs Taylor at 65 Eversfield Place.
HRH Princess Frederica and husband
Prince and Princess of Wales ~ for a day, to open Alexandra Park.
King Leopold II, King of the Belgians (1835-1909) and Comte d'Outtremont. Mr and Mrs Glade's Queens Hotel for 5 days. He was Prince Albert's cousin. On Good Friday attended Catholic mass at St Mary Star of the Sea. Passed his 52nd birthday here. Commissioned two ornamental glass parade seats for Ostend, which were made my Eldridge's and shipped over. In 1888 he visited again, arriving by ship at the pier.
Marquess of Lorne
Lady Crewe 1869
Admiral Sir James Scott
Dowager Lady Elphinstone
Prince and Princess de Joinville
Duke de Penthivre
Count and Countess of Paris
Duke and Duchess du Aumale
The Saxe Cobourg family 45 Marina and RVH
Lord and Lady Elibank
Dowager Lady Sandford
The Prine de Chimay
Lord de Manley
Lady Amcotts Ingilby
Lady Mary Fielding
Princess de Nar Bey
Princess and Princess Gargarin
Princess and Princess Soltykoff
Count de Turune
Earl and Countess of Stamford and Warrington
Marchioness of Abergavenny
Earl of Northesk
Lord and Lady Ashley
Earl and Countess of Cottenham
Earl and Countess Spencer (5th earl, Diana's father was 8th)
Lots of honorables
Lots of admirals, majors, captains
Lots of reverends
Lots of knights and ladies