What to See in England
By Gordon Home
Public Domain Books
=How to get there.=–Train from London Bridge or Victoria. London, Brighton, and South Coast Railway. =Nearest Station.=–Cowes. =Distance from London.=–87 miles. =Average Time.=–Varies between 4 to 5-1/4 hours.
1st 2nd 3rd =Fares.=–Single 16s. 0d. 10s. 5d. 8s. 10d. Return 27s. 10d. 18s. 2d. 16s. 4d.
=Accommodation Obtainable.=–Cowes–"Fountain Hotel,” “The Gloster,” “Royal Marine Hotel." =Alternative Route.=–Train from Waterloo via Southampton. L. and S.W. Railway.
Osborne House having been presented to the nation by King Edward, portions of the buildings and grounds are, or will be, available to the public on week days.
This stately marine residence of the late Queen Victoria is situated in the Isle of Wight, an island remarkable for the variety and beauty of its scenery. The Queen purchased the estate in 1845 from Lady Elizabeth Blachford, and the palace was finished in 1851. Since that time many additions have been made. The main gates are about three-quarters of a mile up the hill from the ferry, and the Prince of Wales’s Gate further south, opposite the hotel. Osborne House has a melancholy interest attached to it, for here, on January 22, 1901, Queen Victoria breathed her last. A portion of every year was spent by the Queen at her seaside home, which had many associations of her happy life there with her husband, the late Prince Consort, “Albert the Good.” Surrounded with their children, they forgot the splendours and fatigues of Court, and devoted themselves to training their family in all that was useful and good. The Queen nearly always spoke of Osborne as “her island home.” She and Prince Albert delighted in the fact that it was their own, that they could make their own plans, exercise their own taste in the laying out of the gardens, and in the building–in fact, in everything in this seaside home. The building is in the Palladian style, and was designed by Thomas Cubitt and the late Prince Consort. The grounds, covering 5000 acres, are 8 miles in extent, with a sea front of 1-1/3 miles. The terrace gardens are ornamented with statuary, and the grounds lead down to the water’s edge, where there are sea baths and a private pier. The last journey of Victoria the Good from Osborne to the mausoleum at Frogmore, in the grounds of Windsor Castle, was a spectacle never to be forgotten.
[Illustration: Photochrom Co., Ltd. OSBORNE HOUSE.
Built by Queen Victoria and Prince Albert in 1851.]