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Royal Peculiars – Royal Chapel of All Saints

The next stop on our swift tour of Royal Peculiars is the Royal Chapel of All Saints which is situated in the grounds of Royal Lodge, in Windsor Great Park. The Chapel of All Saints was built by Jeffry Wyatville after King George IV began to use Royal Lodge as a residence more frequently, the Chapel was first used on Palm Sunday in 1825. Although the Chapel was built without the permission of the Treasury, when repairs were required in September 1825, £200 was allocated by the Treasury to carry out this work. Upon the accession of King William IV, much of the greater part of Royal Lodge was demolished though the Royal Chapel of All Saints survived.

During the reign of Queen Victoria, the Chapel was used many times by the Monarch and in 1842 The Queen recorded in her diary her thoughts on a visit to the Chapel, “Everyone joined in the singing, which I so much like. Afterwards we walked to the Royal Lodge, and in the garden which is very pretty.” When Queen Victoria’s mother The Duchess of Kent, died in 1861, Victoria and Prince Albert installed a window in the Chapel in the Duchess’s memory. The window was situated in the Chapel’s enlarged chancel.

The Royal Chapel of All Saints is just a short walk away from Royal Lodge and Royal Lodge is perhaps best known for being the Windsor home of Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother from 1952 until her death in 2002. Although Queen Elizabeth used Royal Lodge as a widow, when she married The Duke of York the couple live at Royal Lodge from 1931 and subsequently began to worship at the Chapel. When The Duke and Duchess of York became King and Queen, they continued to visit the Chapel and King George VI made a number of alterations to the Chapel including installing a new ceiling, renewing the pews and adding a cover to the organ. Following the death of King George VI, Queen Elizabeth continued to worship at the Chapel and when she died in 2002, her body lay at the Chapel’s altar prior to its lying-in-state at Westminster Hall.

The Royal Chapel of All Saints is often considered as an informal parish church for the inhabitants and staff of Windsor Great Park. The Chapel often holds services for members of The Royal Family and for reasons of privacy, Her Majesty The Queen regularly worships at the Chapel. Being a Royal Peculiar, the Royal Chapel of All Saints’ chaplaincy is held by one of the Canons of the College of St George at St George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle.

Featured Photo Credit: andy_kyte_uk via photopin cc

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