*Updated* This is the famous well in the heart of Carshalton village that may be named after Tudor Queen, Anne Boleyn. She possibly stopped at Carshalton, perhaps on the way to Carew Manor in Beddington, where she met King Henry VIII for four days of ‘pleasure’.
From Diana, Princess of Wales to the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, read on to discover the Royal visits and intriguing connections to Carshalton and surrounding areas. Twelve stories in chronological order.
King Henry VIII’s Hideaway at Beddington
Visited 11-14 November, 1528
Arguably one of the most infamous British Kings, he could have passed through Carshalton on his way to Carew Manor in Beddington Park, where he would have met secretly with his then ‘mistress’ Anne Boleyn. How romantic.
Henry, aged 37 at the time, had decided that if Anne could not be seen with him in London, then he would visit her instead. Together they spent four secretive days of ‘pleasure at Beddington’.
King Henry VIII left Beddington and returned to business in London on the 14 November, 1528.
The Carew family had moved to Beddington in the 14th century but rose to prominence during the Tudor period. The Manor of Beddington continued in the Carew family until Sir Nicholas Carew was executed for treason in March 1539. The home was rebuilt in its present form in about 1709 and another Nicholas Carew added two extra wings to the home.
Queen Anne Boleyn has Family Nearby
Visited 11-14 November, 1528
Anne Boleyn may have travelled via Carshalton when visiting Henry at Beddington. Perhaps she stopped at Carshalton Ponds to give her horse a drink (the well by the ponds could be named after her possible visit).
At this time King Henry VIII was infatuated with Anne, even though he was still married to Catherine of Aragon – and they had a ‘romantic’ 4 days in Beddington.
Beddington was a useful meeting point. It is some ten miles from London and about sixteen miles from Anne’s parents’ house at Hever Castle. Beddington was the country seat of Henry’s friend and Anne’s cousin, Sir Nicholas Carew and the family home was described as: “a fair house (or palace rather)…which by advantage of the water is a paradise of pleasure. Even in November, it was a fitting retreat for the would-be lovers”
Anne became the second wife of Henry VIII on 25 January 1533, but soon fell out of favour, and was executed on false charges of incest, witchcraft, adultery and conspiracy against the king. Boleyn was decapitated on May 19, 1536 at the Tower of London.
Her daughter, who became Elizabeth 1st, emerged as one of England’s greatest queens.
Queen Elizabeth 1 Walks with Sir Walter Raleigh
Visited between 1579 – 1583
Local legend has it that Elizabeth I would visit Beddington, the home of her mother’s cousin. It is said that Elizabeth and explorer Sir Walter Raleigh used to take walks in the park and some even say that Raleigh’s embalmed head is buried on the grounds.
Queen Jane Seymour has Secret Liaison with the King of England
Visited 4 May 1536
According to author Alison Weir, Jane Seymour took up temporary residence at Beddington Park. Henry visited Jane discreetly under the cover of darkness.
Jane was the third wife of King Henry VIII. Jane gave the King the son he so desperately desired,She died of postnatal complications less than two weeks after the birth of her only child, a son who became King Edward VI. She was the only wife of the King to receive a queen’s funeral, and his only consort to be buried beside him in St George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle.
Queen Anne’s Royal Physician
Died in Carshalton 1 November 1714
Dr Radcliffe was a physician to King William III and then to Queen Anne. Whilst staying at his country retreat, Carshalton House, he famously didn’t attend to Queen Anne when she was close to death, ignoring a Royal Messenger that requested his help. He passed away of a stroke three months later in Carshalton. In one official account it said he died in church. That day being All Saints Day, could it have also been at All Saints Church?
Pics: Olivia Colman portraying Queen Anne in the 2019 movie, The Favourite. Dr Radcliffe himself (buried at St Mary’s in Oxford).
Princess Helena lays Stone at All Saints Church
Princess Helena, was the widow of Queen Victoria’s haemophiliac son Prince Leopold. She visited Carshalton to lay the foundation stone set in the east wall of All Saints Church. The stone commemorates the beginning of the reconstruction works in 1891. Next time you’re passing between The Woodman pub, and the church, see if you can spot it. The stone is dated but doesn’t contain her name.
Queen Mary Supports Local Hospital
Visited 28 June, 1915
Queen Mary, wife of King George V, visited The Children’s Infirmary in Carshalton to officially open it as Queen Mary’s Hospital. Queen Mary is pictured above with her daughter, who worked as a nurse. The hospital is mostly demolished, but the name remains by way of Queen Mary’s Park.
Princess Anne Shares her Love of Horses
Visited May 1974
A keen horse-lover, Princess Anne visited Carshalton to officially open the Diamond Riding Centre. The Riding Centre began in 1969 providing pony rides to children at the nearby Queen Mary’s Hospital, and last year celebrated its 50th anniversary.
Princess Diana Receives a Warm Welcome
Visited 19 January, 1988
Diana, Princess of Wales, received a rapturous local welcome when she opened the new Obstetrics and Gynaecology Unit at St Helier Hospital.
Prince Edward opened the Charles Cryer Theatre
Prince Edward officially opened the new-look Charles Cryer Theatre in 1991. It closed again in 2016, but was reborn in 2019 as The Cryer. The building was originally created as a public hall way back in 1874.
Prince Charles visits with Jamie Oliver
Visited 26 November, 2012
Prince Charles made his first official visit to the borough of Sutton to praise a school which has transformed its fortunes through good food. The current heir to the throne chatted to youngsters and was given a tour around Carshalton Boys Sports College.
Duke and Duchess of Cambridge Support The Royal Marsden
Visited 29 September, 2011
Prince William has been the President of The Royal Marsden in Sutton since May 2007, a position previously held by his mother, Diana, Princess of Wales. He visited with his wife Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge to open the new Oak Centre for Children and Young People.
This feature is for entertainment purposes, but we’ve tried to be as accurate as possible. As usual, have we missed anything? Let us know below