The late Professor Harold Livermore, with his wife Ann, rescued Turner’s house from destitution in the years following the second World War and lived there until his death in 2010. The house has a GLC Blue Plaque by the front door to commemorate its historic link to the famous painter.
The Friends, through their activities, promote knowledge of Turner, his house and garden and his time in Twickenham. Professor Livermore left his archive of Turner material to the Trust and the Friends are supporting its conservation.
The Friends receive a regular newsletter and arrange an annual programme of visits, gatherings and talks. They have established links with other arts bodies in the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames where Turner’s house is located, and with national organisations dedicated to the study, education and promotion of Turner’s work.
If you would like to support our work, and participate in our activities, please consider joining the Friends. You will find details on this web site.
At the beginning of December 2010 the Sandycombe Lodge Trust received the keys to Sandycombe Lodge and are now the registered owners. This marks the beginning of an interesting time for the Trust and for the Friends, as the Trust begins the process of applying for a grant for an Options Appraisal Study. This study will be led by an appointed conservation architect, and will look at ways in which conserving and using the house “as a monument to Turner in Twickenham” can be achieved.
Sandycombe Lodge now owned by Trust
We are now at the beginning of a most exciting time. There will be many ways in which the Friends can assist this project and the role of the Friends of Turner’s House, will grow enormously. When the architect for the proposal to restore the house is chosen, which will be in the near future, the Trustees will encourage the Friends to put forward their ideas for the future use of Sandycombe Lodge.
Solus Lodge, as it was then called, is a rare example of a house designed and built by a great artist for his own use. Examples of sketches and ideas for the house can be found in Turner's notebooks.
Turner however was often away travelling and his father complained of the damp. Turner eventually sold the house in 1826 and based himself in central London.
The surrounding area, which was still rural and given over to market gardens in Turner’s time, was extensively developed for housing in the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Turner’s original garden has long since gone.
Miraculously Turner’s house has survived to the present day, surrounded by suburban villas. It is now called Sandycombe Lodge. In the 1940s the house was purchased by the late Professor Harold Livermore and his wife Ann.It was his intention to leave the house to the nation on his death together with a collection of material about the artist.
Ten miles southwest of London you can find an interesting town called Twickenham. It is a medium sized town with beautiful nature and a very long history. If you visit London make sure to go there for a day or two to visit all the interesting places we will be talking about here.
Twickenham is all about rugby and the proof of that is their huge rugby stadium which is the home stadium of the English rugby union and is officially called Twickenham Stadium. Besides the great stadium they also have a rugby museum to show how much they love rugby. It is called the World Rugby Museum and got that name in 2007. Before that, since it was opened in 1996, it was called The Museum of Rugby. Over 25 thousand visitors go there each year to see all what they have collected during the years. Their collections counts more than 25 thousand objects and all of them are displayed in permanent galleries. They say that their vision is to collect, interpret and document, and of course exhibit the world's largest and most comprehensive collection of rugby football memorabilia. So in case you like rugby and enjoy history, this will be a piece of heaven on earth for you.
But besides rugby history and games, Twickenham has more things to offer. They have a beautiful park that will give you the feeling of being lost somewhere in England where no human being has put a step before. The green seems greener here and the woods woodier, go and see it for yourself. In case you are there on your own, then you can take a London escort to make you company.
If you love nature and architecture combined then visit the York House Gardens also. The statues and sculptures are pretty old and quite interesting to watch, and the connection they have with the nature makes them look like something out of a fairytale. Many call it a hidden gem and it really is, because many people don't see it at first but it is just a two minute long walk away from some good pubs and the urban part of the town. Make sure, in case you visit Twickenham, to go there and spend some time in that beautiful piece of beauty.
We would say it is more an art than a rugby place. Why? Because Twickenham's history is full of art, art museums, memorial houses and beautiful sights. One of those is the Orleans House Gallery. You can take a sip of coffee there and eat some delicious cakes also, but the real thing that will make your day is the art and architecture of that place. Besides the Orleans House Gallery you can also visit Turner's house here - the Sandycombe Lodge, and also the Marble Hill House. The Marble Hill House is actually Henrietta Howard's house, buts she often invited Alexander Pope as a guest. He had a villa also in Twickenham but it was demolished in 1808 and replaced by other buildings in 1845.
Many will call Twickenham just a town near London, but now you see it has much more to offer and to show to those people who know the real values.