Arbella - England's lost queen

Bess, Elizabeth and Arbella in High Great Chamber, Hardwick

Arbella was a prospective successor to Queen Elizabeth I, but hers is a little-known and dramatic story.

New for Arbella 2015

  • Visit Arbella's bower in the park
  • Pick up Sarah Gristwood's biography in the shop
  • Vote in our Palace or Prison debate
  • Explore the garden and discover Arbella's mirrors
  • The young at heart can enjoy dressing up in jewels and crowns
  • Learn more about the life of Lady Arbella Stuart
  • Hunt the gardens and hall for Arbella's golden keys

Discover more...

 If you are interested in finding out more about Hardwick's forgotten princess; Sarah Gristwood, Arbella's only biographer, is leading an exclusive tour of Hardwick on 22 September. Booking is essential and tickets can be purchased through our online ticket office.

The lost catachism

Catechism at Hardwick

Catechism at Hardwick

 This little book of religious text was discover behind the wooden paneling in the dining room at Hardwick. Dated to 1585 it is likely this item belonged to one of Arbella's cousins. Arbella was a highly educated young woman and was actively involved in the education of her young cousins. Unfortunately, we do not have any of Arbella's personal belongings but this little book gives a facsinating insight into her world.