Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Queen Victoria's Osborne House 'fully restored'

Osborne House garden terrace Image copyright English Heritage
Image caption English Heritage said the lower terrace had been fully repaired for the first time

Part of the garden at Queen Victoria's private family home on the Isle of Wight is being opened to the public for the first time.

The Osborne House lower terrace, where the Queen wrote and painted, has been restored by English Heritage at a cost of £600,000.

The organisation said falling masonry and broken steps had made the terrace too dangerous to open previously.

It said the terrace was the last major part of the property to be repaired.

Image copyright English Heritage
Image caption The centrepiece Andromeda fountain has been restored to full working order
Image copyright Royal Collection / HM Queen Elizabeth 2
Image caption A watercolour of the garden terrace, painted by Queen Victoria

Part of the work included restoring the Italian-inspired yellow colour of the walls to match the rest of the property.

Also restored are the centrepiece Andromeda fountain and the ornate Shell Alcove, decorated with thousands of sea-shells from the beach below.

Samantha Stones, English Heritage's Properties Curator at Osborne, said: "Queen Victoria loved to be outside in the fresh sea air and the terrace was a place of peace."

Image copyright English Heritage
Image caption The Shell Alcove has been restored to its original red and blue colour scheme

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