Help us to restore Kew's Temperate House
Opened in 1863, the Temperate House is the largest surviving Victorian glasshouse in the world. We have raised a significant proportion of the funds needed to complete this vital restoration project, but Kew still needs to raise an additional £1 million.
The Temperate House is laid out according to Decimus Burton's design
Kew's Temperate House needs your help
The Temperate House is the largest surviving Victorian glasshouse in the world. It is twice the size of the Palm House, and both were designed by Decimus Burton. But the years have taken their toll and major restoration work is needed for this Grade I building. A £34.3 million restoration project will be undertaken in a sequential, staged manner and the Temperate House will re-open in 2018.
The Heritage Lottery Fund has committed Round 1 and Round 2 support of £15.6m towards the project, among the largest grants Kew has ever received. Defra has committed over £10 million towards the project and major donations have been committed from philanthropists Eddie and Sue Davies, The Wolfson Foundation, The Garfield Weston Foundation, The Linbury Trust and The J Paul Getty Jnr Charitable Trust.
We have raised a significant proportion of the funds required to complete the restoration, but Kew still needs to raise an additional £1 million.
Transforming the Temperate House
Kew’s plans include a comprehensive restoration of the Temperate House and its surrounding landscape and converting the adjoining Evolution House into an Engagement Centre. This includes restructuring the horticultural displays and rejuvenating the existing historic botanical collection, setting up a community outreach programme with an accompanying apprenticeship scheme and volunteer programme, and creating a new arm to Kew’s schools education programme, which will encourage children and young people to learn more about plants and climate change.
History of the Temperate House
- Construction took nearly 40 years to complete – it began in 1860, with the two octagons finished in 1861 and the centre in 1862. After financial problems, the wings were finally added, and the glasshouse opened in its entirety in 1899.
- The previous restoration began in 1977 and took three and a half years, during which the Chilean wine palm and seven other trees were left in place and protected with polythene and portable heaters. The glass house officially reopened in 1982.
- The building is twice the size of the Palm House, covering an area of 4,880 m2, and on its completion it was the largest glasshouse in the world.
- The Temperate House embodies all that Kew is about – rich heritage, world class plant collections and the importance of plants to people’s lives.
Your donation can make a difference
Kew needs your help if we are to be able to carry out this complex and ambitious restoration. Please make a donation today and become a part of the campaign to renew and reinvigorate Kew’s Temperate House.
Whether you visit the Gardens and the Temperate House regularly, or haven’t yet had an opportunity to visit, you can play a part in saving our heritage and securing our future.
Please make a donation today to the Kew Fund, or pick up a leaflet next time you are in the Gardens.