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From its conception, Spencer House was recognised as one of the most ambitious aristocratic town houses ever built in London and is the city’s only great eighteenth-century private palace to survive intact. This magnificent house has regained the full splendour of its late eighteenth-century appearance after a ten-year restoration undertaken by RIT Capital Partners plc, under the Chairmanship of Lord Rothschild.
Eight State Rooms are open to the public for viewing on Sundays throughout the year (except August). Groups of up to 20 are given tours by our experienced Blue Badge guides. To join a tour, please select from the times and dates available below or click here for Group Tours
Rosalind Hutchinson is Head Guide at Spencer House and has worked in tourism since 1986. A Director of the London Tourist Board for six years, she trains guides internationally and conducts study programmes for the Smithsonian Institution, American Universities and the New York Times. Ros was awarded the MBE for services to tourism in 1997.
Jenny Mitchell has been a Blue Badge guide for over 25 years. Having grown up in Chile Jenny is fluent in Spanish. She particularly relishes the social history of the 18th Century, when the House was built, and the constant changes to the collection of art which make it such an exciting venue to guide.
Betty has led a very cosmopolitan life. Educated in Chile, Argentina, Egypt, Rome and England, her mother was Dutch and her father Chilean. Fluent in Spanish, Italian and French Betty has a BA in Humanities and has lived with her husband and family in Europe, the Middle East, Africa, the US and South America.
Carole worked in Tourism across Europe and on returning to the UK qualified as a Blue Badge Guide in 1988. Guiding at Spencer House since 1995 Carole also guides in French and Italian, guiding in Parliament and at the All England Club at Wimbledon complements her interests in politics and the 18th Century.
Born in Cortona, Tuscany, Maurizio has degrees in translating, interpreting and foreign languages with a focus on Visual Arts from Trieste, Venice and Siena Universities as well as a fourth degree in Philosophy. Currently an Art Expert for both Tate Galleries, he tutors trainees for the National Gallery and is studying to be a guide for Cambridge.
Speaking Spanish and French, Hazel is a qualified teacher of English as a foreign language and was the Director of the London Guide Training Course for 3 years. A Former Board Member of the institute of Tourist Guiding, she trains the volunteer guides at Salisbury Cathedral and is a Palace of Westminster Guide.
Ian entered tourism as a guide after ten years in the theatre. Appointed a Spencer House guide in 1991 Ian recalls the guides visit to Italy when we visited the temples and architectural sites linked to the House. Ian is also an Honorary Steward, Guide and volunteer at Westminster Abbey.
Ingrid, from Hamburg, came to the UK in 1964 and spent 13 years working for the London Bureau of West German Television as the assistant to the TV Correspondent. Ingrid also guides at Waddesdon Manor and is part of the original Spencer House team.
Jackie speaks French, Spanish and Italian with a BA Hons in the History of Art and an MA in London Studies. Jackie spent 5 years with the Foreign Office, posted to Belgrade, Paris and Rome. After time in Caracas, Jacki became a Blue Badge guide with a special interest in Art Galleries and a passion for theatre.
Jennifer is delighted to join the Spencer House team of guides and enjoys the privilege of revealing its splendours to visitors. Jennifer was Director for London Blue Badge Guide Training for 6 years to 2015 and works in London’s museums and galleries and the Palace of Westminster. Jennifer also guides in German.
Joanne entered guiding after working for British Airways and was a steward on Concorde for 2 years. A guide trainer and examiner, Jo is a former President of the Institute of Tourist Guiding. Her interests include country houses, gardens and the arts.
Lindsay, a guide trainer and part of the original Spencer House team, is a specialist in London Museums and Galleries, particularly the National Portrait Gallery. She enjoys the Spencer House links with European Galleries.
After school at Harrow and a degree in English Literature, Robin worked at the Stock Exchange and then in Antiques. He is an authority on and is passionate about trees.
Originally trained as a ballet dancer, Sheila has travelled widely. After studying Spanish and French at university, she worked professionally as a dancer internationally. Following 6 years in Japan, Sheila returned to the UK, married and qualified as a London Blue Badge Guide in 1995. She also guides in Spanish and Japanese.
Brought up and educated in South China, Heng came to the UK in the late 1990’s. She immediately fell in love with this country, rich in cultural heritage and natural beauty. Qualifying as a London Guide in 2008 Heng enjoys guiding throughout the capital. She regards Spencer House as a hidden gem and feels privileged to introduce it to visitors.
A graduate in Music, Nick managed Classical Music ensembles internationally before becoming a London Blue Badge Guide. A Parliament guide for 17 years and a guide at the All England Lawn Tennis Club since 2011, Nick has also worked in Guide training. Literature, history and the architecture are among his other passions.
Olivia has an MA in history from Pembroke College, Cambridge and a post graduate diploma in Education from UCL. She qualified as a South East Guide in 2015 as “Guide of the Year” and in London in 2017. A new member of the Spencer House team she loves communicating her knowledge and fascination of life in the 18thC with visitors.
Muriel, from the Loire Valley, is a qualified teacher of English as a foreign language and English literature. After leading a cosmopolitan life in Africa, Japan, Hong Kong and Spain she now works as a London Blue Badge Guide. Having a Master’s Degree in the History of Art and Connoisseurship she considers it a gift to take her visitors round Spencer House’s elegant and spectacular rooms.