Augusta, Princess of Wales (1719-1772)
Augusta was 17 when she married Frederick. After his death, she
lived a retired life, moving between London and Kew. Assisted by
Frederick’s friends, Lord Bute and the Reverend Stephen Hales,
both well-known botanists, she followed her husband’s plans
for the garden, extending it, adding buildings and features. The
accounts of the early 1750s show considerable horticultural activity
in what was now a 35 acre garden and Horace Walpole later estimated
that she spent between £30,000 and £40,000 on Kew’s
By 1754, 110 acres were enclosed, the lake and mound finished and
the “Chinese” and “bell temples” built.
In 1757, Lord Bute introduced William Chambers, who became her architect,
planning and overseeing the construction of many buildings such
as The Orangery, the Great Stove and the Pagoda. In 1759 William
Aiton was appointed to manage the Physic Garden. By 1768 the herbaceous
collection contained over 2,700 species.
Towards the end of her life Augusta only visited Kew when visiting
her son George III. After her death, he and his family moved into
the White House and Richmond Lodge was demolished.
Princess Augusta is commemorated by the Princess of Wales Conservatory,
opened by Princess Diana on 28th July 1987.
There are several portraits of Frederick and Augusta on display
in the National Portrait Gallery
On to: George