Parties at Packwood
Parties, concerts and follies at Packwood were legendary. In the era of the Jazz Age invitations were sent as ragtime lyrics and Christmas was always the excuse for a vast gathering with quantities of excellent food and drink.
The visit of the glamourous socialite, Prince George Chavchavadze, caused ripples in local society. He was a White Russian, as the supporters of the deposed Russian monarchy were known and his recital on the late 17th Century spinet in the Great Hall at Packwood was the hot ticket of the season in 1931. He signed the instrument, which is now in the Drawing Room.
The crowning event of Baron Ash’s social career was in 1927 when Queen Mary visited Packwood for tea. Despite a torrential downpour at the moment of the Queen’s arrival, all went remarkably well. The visit was memorialised in the preserved cup and saucer from which the Queen took tea and the renaming of the room to which she retired to rest.
Concerts and plays in the Great Hall and in the gardens were a recurring feature and were known collectively as ‘Follies’. Theatrical productions on the terrace were the occasion of great parties and further artistic endeavours in the visitors’ books. The floor in the Great Hall was sprung especially for dancing – take a twirl on your next visit.