National Trust Celebrates 125 Birthday- a look back at Mount Stewart

Celebrating 125 Years

In 2020 we're celebrating 125 years since the National Trust was founded. With the help of our supporters, we protect and care for special places so people and nature can thrive for generations to come. As Europe’s largest conservation charity, we look after nature, beauty and history for the nation to enjoy. And it’s all thanks to the millions of members, volunteers and staff that support us. Without your help, we wouldn't be able to care for the miles of coastline, woodlands, countryside and the hundreds of historic buildings, gardens and precious collections that we protect.

125 Year Timeline – Londonderry Family Events

Mount Stewart was formed by the Stewart family in 1744.was the Irish seat of the Vane-Tempest-Stewart family, Marquesses of Londonderry. The house and its contents reflect the history of the Vane-Tempest-Stewart family, who played a leading role in British and Irish social and political life.

Let us take you back through the last 125 years of life at Mount Stewart

1895

On 11th April Theresa and her family travelled to Belfast to open the Arts and Industrial Exhibition in the White Linen Hall in the Belfast City centre. 

Theresa, Marchioness of Londonderry
Theresa, Marchioness of Londonderry
Theresa, Marchioness of Londonderry

1897

Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee. Edith’s coming out ball at Stafford House, hosted by her Aunt, Millicent Duchess of Sutherland (19th July). Edith was described as ‘sweet in pink’ in her pink gown. Charles finished at Sandhurst (June). Charles commissioned in the Royal Horse Guards, the Blues and Royals, one of three regiments constituting the Household Cavalry (Sept).

1899

Charles and Edith become engaged. Marriage scheduled for September but had to be postponed because Charles’ brother Charles Stewart Reginald, known by the family as ‘Reggie’ becomes very ill and dies (9th October).

Mount Stewart Helen Charles Reggie Boater Hat Image

1899

Charles and Edith married at St Peter’s, Eaton Square, London (28th Nov).

1900

Charles and Edith’s eldest daughter Maureen Helen is born (6th Dec). 6th Marquess becomes Postmaster-General.

Edith, Lady Londonderry with her children.
Mount Stewart Edith and Children Image
Edith, Lady Londonderry with her children.

1902

King Edward VII’s coronation (Theresa drops tiara down toilet – retrieved by Doctor’s Forceps). 6th Marquess bears Sword of State. (8th Aug). Charles and Edith’s only son ‘Robin’ Edward Charles Stewart Robert is born (18th Nov). 6th Marquess enters Cabinet as first President of the Board of Education.

1903

King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra visit Mount Stewart (24th - 26th July) as part of their tour of Ireland.

King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra visit Mount Stewart
King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra visit Mount Stewart
King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra visit Mount Stewart

 

1904-5

Charles and Edith on extended trip to India and the Far East. They visited Bombay, Calcutta, Delhi, Amritsar, Lahore, Peshawar, the Khyber Pass, Hyderabad, Madras, Singapore, Honk Kong and Japan, before crossing the pacific to Vancouver and return home via Toronto, Ottawa and New York.

1910

Charles and Edith’s second daughter Margaret Frances Anne is born (9th Mar).

1915

Edith forms the Ark club. (See Politics staff folder for more information). 6th Marquess dies of influenza and pneumonia (6th – 8th Feb). Charles becomes 7th Marquess of Londonderry. Charles and Edith move into Wynyard in Durham and Londonderry House in London.

1917

Edith created Dame of the British Empire, the first military award given to a woman, due to her outstanding contribution to the war effort through the Women’s Legion. Charles returns from serving in France (May). Encouraged by his mother Theresa and his wife Edith, Charles becomes more involved in Home Rule situation in Northern Ireland.

Edith, Lady Londonderry
Edith, Lady Londonderry
Edith, Lady Londonderry

1921

Mairi Elizabeth Vane-Tempest-Stewart  born on March 25 1921

1923

Charles becomes Chancellor of Queen’s University Belfast.

1924

Duke and Duchess of York (future King George VI) visit Mount Stewart (July). Robin made honorary attaché to the British Embassy in Rome while Sir Ronald Graham was Ambassador (Nov).

1928

Edith publishes The Magic Ink-Pot, a collection of children's stories woven with celtic mythology.

The Magic Ink-Pot by Edith, Lady Londonderry
The Magic Ink-Pot by Edith, Lady Londonderry
The Magic Ink-Pot by Edith, Lady Londonderry

1931

Charles appointed Secretary of State for Air (Nov). He held this position until June 1935.

1935

Charles made Lord Privy Seal and briefly Leader of the House of Lords (June - November).

1940

Lady Mairi marries Derek Keppel, Viscount Bury, son of the 9th Earl of Albemarle at Mount Stewart.

1941

Lady Mairi’s eldest daughter Elizabeth is born.(Nov)

Mount Stewart Lady Rose Sister Elizabeth Image

1943

Lady Mairi’s younger daughter Lady Rose is born (Dec).

1949

Charles, the 7th Marquess dies at Mount Stewart (10th Feb), his eldest son Robin becomes 8th Marquess of Londonderry. Mount Stewart and the family’s Northern Irish estates passed to Edith and later to Lady Mairi, while the titles, other properties passed to Robin.

1957

Edith, Lady Londonderry gives the gardens at Mount Stewart to the National Trust.

Edith, Lady Londonderry working in the gardens at Mount Stewart
Edith Lady Londonderry in the gardens at Mount Stewart
Edith, Lady Londonderry working in the gardens at Mount Stewart

1959

Edith, Lady Londonderry dies and is buried at Mount Stewart, in Tir Na nOg, the family burial ground (23rd April)

1977

Lady Mairi gives the house and may of its contents to the National Trust. The Trust opens Mount Stewart House, Garden & Temple of the Winds to visitors.

The Black and White Stone Hall
The Black and White Stone Hall at Mount Stewart
The Black and White Stone Hall

2009

Lady Mairi Bury dies at Mount Stewart and is buried in Tir Na nOg. Lady Rose and her husband Mr Peter Lauritzen live at Mount Stewart for 6 months a year.

2012

Alexander 9th Marquess dies, his son Frederick becomes 10th Marquess of Londonderry.

2015

National Trust completes an extensive restoration of the house and its contents as well as the purchase of the wider estate re-uniting it with plans to open more trails to the public.

Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall meeting guests at the house re-opening
Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall meet guests at the official re-opening of Mount Stewart house
Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall meeting guests at the house re-opening

2019- Present

The present-day estate of Mount Stewart extends to 950 acres with a large lake and many monuments and farm buildings with plans to open more trails this year.

Aerial View Demesne
Drawing Room at Mount Stewart

Experience the Londonderry Loan Collection at Mount Stewart

Learn more about these items of international importance - items which also help set in a broader historical context the Londonderry family’s sense of public duty towards, and involvement in, national and international affairs alongside all the other wonderful family objects, portraits and memorabilia.