Hampton Court Palace Sleepover

12 September 2013

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As long term readers of this blog will know, I absolutely adore Hampton Court Palace – it is such an excellent place to visit and so imbued with centuries of fascinating history that encompasses some of the most dramatic, romantic and exciting events from Henry VIII’s wooing of Anne Boleyn to the arrest of Catherine Howard to the imprisonment and escape of Charles I to the honeymoon of Charles II and so on. It’s just incredible and, unlike a lot of royal palaces, you can still really FEEL the presence of the people who have lived, loved and hated within its walls.

You can imagine therefore my excitement when I discovered that those geniuses at Historic Royal Palaces have decided to hold another one of their brilliant sleep over events in the palace on Friday 27th of September. Yes, you read that right – it’s an amazing opportunity to actually sleep over night in the palace itself. What could be more magical?

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Participants in the sleepover will arrive at the palace after it closes in the evening and then get treated to dinner in Elizabeth I’s Privy Kitchen followed by Elizabethan dancing and music in the Great Hall before taking part in two special twilight tours around the palace, which will involve live interaction with various members of Elizabeth’s court – including, maybe, Her Majesty herself.

After all this excitement it will be time to bed down for the night in the glorious Cartoon Gallery before waking up to a breakfast in the Privy Kitchen. Although Hampton Court is famous for its ghostly goings on, sleepover guests have been warned in advance that there won’t be any opportunities to ghost hunt and any smuggled in ghost hunting equipment will be confiscated at the beginning.

It’s a little bit pricey at £100 per person but honestly I think it’s well worth it as how often do you get an opportunity like this – to actually sleep in the palace overnight and experience Elizabethan festivities in the magnificent Tudor Great Hall? It’s going to be completely wonderful.

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I’m absolutely thrilled to be able to say that I’m going to be there too as my very lovely husband has bought me a ticket for my birthday so come the 27th of September, I’ll be heading to Hampton Court Palace with my sleeping bag, pyjamas, washbag, Kindle, torch and absolutely NO GIN WHATSOEVER for a night of Tudor fun!

Personally, I’m hoping that it rains overnight or, even better, that there’s an epic thunderstorm or something as I can’t imagine anything more magnificently spooky and evocative than listening to the rain lashing against the windows of the gallery while tucked up snuggly in my sleeping bag.

You can book a place on the Hampton Court Palace sleepover here. I will OF COURSE be reporting back with plenty of photos and girlish excitement.

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