The Queen's Gallery George IV exhibition wall from the Royal Collection Trust.

  • The Queen’s Gallery has reopened and is following UK government advice regarding COVID-19. 
  • Buckingham Palace’s main art gallery is run by the Royal Collection Trust and forms the south wing of the palace.
  • Art swapped out on a rotating basis, typically displaying around 450 pieces of work from the Royal Collection at a time.
  • The Queen’s Gallery Exhibitions usually focus on a specific artist or royal figure who donated to the collection. The 2019 Leonardo Da Vinci Queen’s Gallery Exhibition displayed 200 pieces of art attributed to him. This year, the gallery is focusing on King George IV, Queen Victoria’s great-uncle.

England is arguably one of the best places in the world for culture and art, London particularly so. Whether you prefer a full royal castle on your doorstep, or the magic of Greenwich's Painted Hall, the capital has a lot to offer. London galleries are especially brilliant, with The Queen’s Gallery sitting at the top of the list.

The Queen’s Gallery is a section of Buckingham Palace exclusively made to display the palace’s art, and run by the RCT. It makes up the south wing of the palace, the furthest projecting part, and was first opened in 1962 before being extended and reopened for the Queen’s Golden Jubilee. Over 450 works are displayed at a time.

Painting of King George IV at his exhibition.
Image © Royal Collection Trust

Currently, The Queen’s Gallery is displaying an exhibition until the 11 October on King George IV, king from 1820 to 1830, focusing on his extravagant life and tastes. Throughout his life he collected a variety of art pieces, such as paintings, metalwork, furniture, books, ceramics and more in vast numbers from all over Europe, many by the finest artists of the day. The exhibition aims to present his life through the art he collected. One of the key pieces is the Roentgen Desk from 1785, designed and made by David Roentgen. He was a patron of a variety of royal figures, and created a unique piece combining clockwork and furniture in 2,224 components. The collection also includes a set of 17 armchairs; a bronze sculpture of Antiope and Theseus; and The Grand Service, a 4,000-piece dining service set. Whether you have a particular art medium interest or just want to look at things that are pretty, there is so much to see during the exhibition.

From 4 December, the Queen’s Gallery is holding an exhibition of the Masterpieces of Buckingham Palace, focusing on the most important paintings in the Royal Collection from the Picture Gallery. The exhibition will include pieces from Titian, Vermeer, Rembrandt, Van Dyck, Rubens, and Canaletto, as well as many others. Tickets are currently available to book.

You can also, currently, have a combined visit of the Gallery and the Royal Mews, who are responsible for all travel of the Royal Family, and have a variety on display. The Buckingham Palace State Rooms are also open, whether you’re interested in seeing the art and pieces held there, or the grand ballroom or throne room.

If you’re interested in art, the Royal Family, or both, this a great day out to explore some of Britain's heritage.

What to know before you go

  • The Queen’s Palace is implementing new health and safety measures: advanced booking is in place as the venue is operating at a reduced capacity to maintain social distancing; masks are suggested until the 7 August while compulsory inside shops, and compulsory in the whole gallery from 8 August onwards; the shop is cashless; and touch-free dispensers and hand-washing facilities are available across the route. 
  • The Queen’s Palace opening times are typically Monday and Thursday to Sunday 11am-6.30pm until 31 October, and then 10am-5.30pm from 1 November to 30 November.
  • In 2020 the gallery will be closed from 12 October-3 December.
  • If you are unable to use your tickets you can ask for an exchange, subject to availability.
  • The Queen’s Gallery is fully accessible for wheelchair users, D/deaf or Hard of Hearing visitors, Blind or Partially Sighted visitors and autistic visitors; staff will be on hand to help with any and all queries.
  • All toilets are baby-changing and wheelchair accessible, and are located on the ground floor.
  • Buggies can be used in the gallery unless it is particularly busy, in which case you will be asked to leave it in the Undercroft to collect when you leave.
  • Only bottled water is allowed inside the Gallery, and food and drink are not available for purchase. There are a number of restaurants nearby, whether you’re looking for a family favourite for a quick lunch, like Caffè Nero, or something a bit different, like The Other Naughty Piglet.
  • The Queen’s Gallery Shop is currently open, or you can see the full collection online at the Royal Collection Shop. Whether you’re looking for a book or guide, or something more sentimental like fine china, there’s something for all ages to remember the day.

Getting there

  • The gallery's address is: The Queen's Gallery, Buckingham Palace, London, SW1A 1AA.
  • There are four train stations within walking distance of the palace: London Victoria, Green Park, St James’ Park and Hyde Park Corner. The Palace is in Zone 1.
  • Bus numbers 11, 211, C1 and C10 stop on Buckingham Palace Road.
  • Victoria Coach Station is a ten-minute walk from the Palace.
  • Please follow the latest government guidelines if travelling by public transport.
  • The closest car park is Euro Car Parks - The Mayfair Car Park, which is a 13-minute walk.

Some images © Royal Collection Trust

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Royal Collection Trust

The Royal Collection Trust looks after the Royal Collection, one of the last European royal collections to remain intact, and one of the largest art collections in the world. It is held in trust by the Queen but is managed by the RCT. It contains over one million objects ranging from paintings to sculptures to miniatures to photographs; anything that counts as fine and decorative arts will probably be included. The collection has been gathered since Restoration of the ,onarchy in 1660, as Oliver Cromwell initially sold the greater part of King Charles I’s possessions. The most important additions to the Royal Collection were made by Frederick, Prince of Wales; George III; George IV; Queen Victoria and Prince Albert; and Queen Mary, consort of King George V.

The Collection is housed in 15 royal palaces and former royal residences across the UK. These include Windsor Castle, Buckingham Palace, the Palace of Holyroodhouse, Hampton Court, the Tower of London, Osborne House and the Royal Pavilion, Brighton. The Queen's Gallery in Buckingham Palace holds a large amount of George IV’s art collection, which makes up an unrivalled chunk of the Royal Collection.

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