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where does prince charles live
The Prince of Wales and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, spend most of their time in two of their royal residences – Clarence House in London and Highgrove House in Gloucestershire. Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, have been living together for almost 20 years. They are sharing their time between several properties and different royal engagements including in Cornwall.
The Prince of Wales’ official residence has been Clarence House, in London, since 2003. The term “Clarence House” is also often used as a metonym for Prince Charles’ office and team – just like the White House is often used to talk about the US president and his team.
The future king, who is now 72, has four different royal residences.
But he and Camilla spend most of their time in two of them – Clarence House and Highgrove House in Gloucestershire.
The first is Prince Charles’ working residence while the latter is his and Camilla’s family home. Inside Clarence House, Prince Charles’ official residence
Clarence House was built in 1825-27 by John Nash. It was built for King William IV, who was Duke of Clarence at the time.
The Queen and Prince Philip lived there for a few years, after their wedding and before Elizabeth II acceded the throne.
During its history, Clarence House has been altered, reflecting the changes in occupancy over nearly two centuries. It was the London home of Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother from 1953 until 2002 and was also the home of The Queen, then Princess Elizabeth, and The Duke of Edinburgh following their marriage in 1947.
Today Clarence House is the official London residence of The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall. Clarence House also provides office accommodation for The Prince of Wales’s Household, who support Their Royal Highnesses in their official engagements and liaise with over 350 organisations with whose work they are involved.
The principal rooms of the house are used by The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall for receptions and other official entertaining and to receive official visitors to the UK.
To prepare the building for The Prince of Wales, Clarence House underwent extensive refurbishment and redecoration. The colour schemes have been adjusted in most rooms, new textiles introduced, and several new pieces from the Royal Collection and from The Prince of Wales’s own art collection added.
Clarence House is open to the public during the summer months. Visitors are given a guided tour of the five rooms and adjoining spaces on the ground floor.
The arrangement of the rooms and the grouping of their contents remain recognisably as they were in Queen Elizabeth’s time, with much of Her Majesty’s collection of works of art and furniture in their former positions.
Very much a home, Clarence House is the last remaining great London house to be maintained in the purpose for which it was built. As the official London residence of The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall, it continues to play a part in the life of the Royal Family and the nation.
The Prince of Wales may have a grand London residence at Clarence House, but his heart seems to be in the countryside,
where he has a Scottish estate, Birkhall, a Welsh farmhouse, Llwynywermod, and of course, his main family home,
Highgrove House in Gloucestershire.
Having bought the estate in 1980 prior to his marriage to Princess Diana, he renovated the house,
installed an organic farm in the grounds, and raised his sons there. The house has recently become prominent again as it features on season 4 of The Crown,
where the prince is shown planning the gardens along sustainable lines in the year after his first marriage. It is still his main residence with Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall.
The house sounds like a very pleasant place to be,
with interiors by Robert Kime (who also decorated rooms at Clarence House, wild, formal, and kitchen gardens,
and sustainable practices (including solar panels and a natural sewage filtering system) governing the running of the house and grounds.
In addition to all of these country house delights,
we’ve learned of a very interesting design feature installed in the name of protecting the royal couple – a steel-lined panic room. According to the royal biographer Brian Hoey in his new book Not in Front of the Corgis,
the room was installed in order to keep the heir-to-the-throne and his wife safe during a terrorist attack.
As Country Living reports, the so-called ‘iron room’ on the first floor “measures 20ft by 20ft, and “has been so built that even if the rest of the house is destroyed, it will drop intact to the ground floor”.
Inside are medical supplies,” says Hoey. “Including containers of Charles and Camilla’s blood group, long-lasting food and drinks,
an armoury, radio transmitters equipped to obtain a signal even within its steel walls, air purifiers and chemical lavatories.”
That’s not the only security feature protecting the couple – there is also a no-fly zone around the house, a high stone wall, and laws making the estate a criminal trespass zone.
Birkhall stands on the Balmoral estate in Royal Deeside, Scotland. Set in glorious scenery, it is currently owned by Charles, Prince of Wales. The building lies in a scenic location by the River Muick.
The house dates back to 1715. It was acquired by the Royal family from the Gordon family by Prince Albert, Queen Victoria’s husband, in 1849. He also purchased the nearby Balmoral Castle and accompanying 50,000-acre estate that year, Birkhall was granted to his eldest son,
Albert Edward, Prince of Wales, the future Edward VII.
King George V lent Birkhall in the 1930s to the Duke and Duchess of York as a holiday home in Scotland for the couple and their children,
Princesses Elizabeth and Princess Margaret. The Queen Mother fondly referred to it as “little big house”. Birkhall was inherited by Charles, Prince of Wales from Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother,
to whom he was very close, upon her death in 2002. The prince also owns Highgrove House in Gloucestershire and Clarence House in London.
The garden, in particular, has captured Prince Charles’s heart. “It is,” Prince Charles he related to Country Life magazine, “such a special place,
particularly because it was made by my grandmother. Charles and Camilla spend their summer holidays at Birkhall
every year and enjoy fishing and going for walks in the surrounding countryside. In March 2020, during the coronavirus pandemic,
the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall self-isolated at Birkhall after Charles tested positive for COVID-19.
‘After a long search lasting some 40 years! Several houses and sites were explored until, finally,
we came across Llwynywermod in an exceptionally beautiful part of Carmarthenshire,
on the edge of the Brecon Beacons and within reasonable reach of Cardiff. Llwynywermod was originally part of an old estate with the ruins of the old house,
the remnants of an 18th century landscaped park and various disintegrating ‘concrete and corrugated iron’ modern farm buildings and an abandoned slurry pit. All this required a lot of re-ordering and restoration. I was determined that as many local and Duchy of Cornwall natural materials as possible could be used in the rebuilding and
restoration process and that the house should be a showcase for traditional Welsh craftsmanship,
textiles and woodwork, so as to draw attention to the high quality small enterprises,
woollen mills, quilt-makers, joiners, stonemasons and metal-workers situated in rural parts of Wales.’
Prince Charles’ design philosophy is one that combines traditional architecture with environmentally-friendly planning, resulting in an aesthetically-pleasing and earth-friendly build. Moreover, This ethos was adopted at his Welsh estate, with classic country charm and thoughtful, sustainable materials. Here’s a look at Llwynywermod, inside Prince Charles’ Welsh Home Where possible, materials,
builders and craftsmen were all sourced locally, and cleverly resourceful systems were installed such as a reed-bed filtration system to store rainwater, and a wood-chip boiler,
which heats and provides hot water for the whole estate. in addition, the estate isn’t a futurist-looking glass pod or a hippy-leaning mud hut,
it’s a timeless and inviting traditional British farmhouse.
The property comprises of three cottages and a grade-listed barn,
with interiors designed by Annabel Elliot who dressed rooms with Welsh furnishings including Elanbach fabrics such as those found in the quaint cottage bedrooms. however, other spaces include touches relating to the Duke of Cornwall,
such as the corridor lined with wooden window shutters and doors made from oak from the Duchy of Cornwall estate.
How important is it for you to have a retreat in Wales?
‘Very important! Having been Prince of Wales for 55 years, it enables me, on various occasions,
to be part of the local community around Llandovery and to have a base for entertaining and meeting people from throughout the country. Wales has still preserved its wonderful sense of community, particularly in the rural areas and Llandovery,
an old sheep drovers’ town, somehow maintains those priceless assets of its own community hospital,
family GPs, a rugby club (of which I am proud to be Patron),
a railway station and a strong connection with the family farming communities in the surrounding countryside. ‘