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Lost Treasures of Stowe


Welcome to the Lost Treasures of Stowe project.

For over a decade the Stowe House Preservation Trust has been overseeing a huge programme of restoration work at Stowe. As the restoration continues, in partnership with World Monuments Fund Britain, we find ourselves wondering: what happened to the furniture and art that once filled these magnificent rooms?


Stowe was the seat of the Temple-Greville family, who became the Dukes of Buckingham & Chandos in 1822. The family were terrible spendthrifts and poor accountants and in 1845 the 2nd Duke spent thousands of pounds preparing for a royal visit by Queen Victoria and Prince Albert. Three years later, in 1848, a huge auction took place in an attempt to cover the Duke's debts. Unfortunately, however, the family would never recover and the entire estate was auctioned in 1921: the house, gardens, furniture, and even bed linen. A third auction followed the next year, stripping Stowe House of all its original fireplaces and other fixtures.

The Lost Treasures of Stowe project has been launched with the support of World Monuments Fund Britain. The aim of the project is to find out what happened to the items removed from Stowe. Where are they now? How did they get there? What is their story?

With this information we aim to put together a 'virtual collection' and map out the dispersal of the original Stowe collection. This will support the exciting new visitor experience being developed for 2015, and you can help.

To learn more about the project and keep up to date with recent findings, please follow our dedicated blog.

To learn more about Stowe House and the Dukes of Buckingham & Chandos, click here.

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