A Blupete Biography Page

Prince's Lodge, Bedford, Part 6 to the Life & Works of
Prince Edward, Duke of Kent

Wentworth in a letter to his agent in London reported on the first few weeks after the Prince and Madame St. Laurent were together again at Halifax in the summer of 1794:
"He and his whole family, from six to twenty-six, are still with me ... Since her arrival they sleep at my little Country house, & come to town in the morning. To-morrow they commence dining there, as I have given him the House, furniture and farm, etc. during his stay in the Province. He still retains rooms in the Province house, with me, as it saves him the expense of furnishing [a] House [in town], and dines with me whenever he stays in town."31
Wentworth built his cottage about six miles from Halifax on the west side of Bedford Basin which he called "Friar Lawrence's Cell." "The Prince took a fancy to the cottage and its surroundings; and soon after, with Sir John's leave, commenced the construction of a mansion, which soon grew to stately proportions."32 This place33 became known as Prince's Lodge and was occupied by the Duke of Kent and his Lady through the years 1794-1800.

Let us turn once again to Akins:

"The villa was built altogether of wood, consisting of a centre of two stories containing the hall and staircase, with a flat roof. There were two wings containing the Duke's apartments. In the rear was a narrow wooden building with pointed gothic windows, resembling a chapel, containing the kitchen and the offices, which extended some distance southward beyond the main building. ... The rooms were not spacious, and the ceilings low, which appears to have been the fashion of building in Halifax at the time."34
Next we turn to McKenzie Porter:
"The white wooden frame building was in imitation of the rococco Italian style. It had a flat roof surrounded by an ornate railing, long narrow windows, and a double-decked portico with lattice-work up which many coloured creepers climbed. Inside were a big ballroom and a large central hall, used for levees. Behind the house was another building in the Gothic style. This contained the guardroom, the kitchens, and Edward's private office. Opposite was a circular bandstand consisting of a gilded Moorish cupola mounted on Greek columns.
Hidden in the woods of the grounds was a Chinese temple with strings of copper bells ringing as they were swung by the wind. A gravel path twisted tortuously through the natural woodlands. A balloonist drifting over the estate would have noticed that the path spelled "Julie." At points where it commanded a view of the [Bedford] Basin, there were seats under tiny shelters that looked as if they had been cut out with a cookie cutter. Among the rafters of these shelters little strips of hanging glass tinkled musically in the breeze. The piece de resistance was an artificial brook, led into the grounds from a nearby stream, which tumbled over a series of pretty waterfalls into a lake. Edward had the lake's natural shape altered to that of a heart as a mark of his love for Julie. It was surrounded by Julie's private garden."


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Peter Landry
2011 (2013)

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