The Queen's Palaces
Buckingham Palace, Windsor Castle and the Palace of Holyroodhouse - these buildings have been part of British royal history for hundreds of years. Presented by Fiona Bruce, this series showcases the art and architecture, the interior decoration and the treasure stored inside these fabulous buildings and reveals the surprising and fascinating stories behind them.
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Episode 3 (Palace of Holyroodhouse)
December 19, 2011
Britain's least well-known royal palace and yet probably the most romantic, Edinburgh's Palace of Holyroodhouse sits in the shadow of the dormant volcano Arthur's Seat. It is also one of Britain's smallest palaces and yet events at Holyrood have determined the fate of three countries - England, France and Scotland. It was also the last place where a royal prince challenged the right of an English king to sit on the throne. Fiona Bruce discovers remarkable objects from the Royal Collection that are intimately bound to the Palace's turbulent history - from the spectacular Darnley Jewel with its many hidden messages to the cat-and-mouse needlework of a doomed queen
Epside 2 (Windsor Castle)
December 12, 2011
Fiona Bruce visits Windsor Castle, the world's oldest and largest inhabited castle, dating back to the 11th century. Taking more than a thousand years to reach its familiar look, it has been a fortress, a home to medieval chivalry, a baroque palace, and finally a romantic fantasy. From the bowels of the Castle to the heights of the battlements, Fiona encounters all manner of royal treasures - from the musket ball that killed a naval hero to table decorations in gold and silver and encrusted with jewels; from the triple-headed portrait of a king who lost his head to Queen Mary's Dolls' House with running taps, and a secret garden hidden in a drawer. All of this was almost lost in the disastrous fire of 1992.
Episode 1 (Buckingham Palace)
December 5, 2011
Buckingham Palace may be just about the most famous building in the world, but its story is much less familiar. Fiona Bruce reveals how England's most spectacular palace emerged from a swampy backwater in just 300 years. The journey of discovery takes her from the sewers of London to the magnificent State Rooms; from a home for camels and elephants to the artistic brilliance of C18th-century Venice; and from a prince's Chinese fantasy to the secret of how the Palace's glittering chandeliers are cleaned today.