Houghton Revisited exhibition to be extended by two months

Before The Prince of Wales officially opened the Houghton Revisited exhibition HRH was given a tour

Before The Prince of Wales officially opened the Houghton Revisited exhibition HRH was given a tour of Houghton Hall by Lord Cholmondeley and (R) Dr Thierry Morel. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: IAN BURT

An exhibition bringing the priceless art collection of Britain's first prime minister back to its original Norfolk home is being extended by two months due its overwhelming success.

Houghton Revisited at Houghton Hall, between Fakenham and King's Lynn, has attracted visitors across the world who are keen to see the collection of art and artefacts by the likes of Van Dyck and Rubens which was assembled by Sir Robert Walpole. Originally due to end on September 29, Houghton Revisited is now being extended until November 24. It follows the huge success of the exhibition since it opened in May. Tens of thousands of people are thought to have enjoyed the exhibition with many dates completely sold out.

Sir Robert collected all of the masterpieces to adorn the walls of his beautiful Norfolk home and 10 Downing Street before his family sold them to Catherine the Great for her beloved Hermitage in St Petersburg, Russia. Houghton Hall's current owner, the Marquess of Cholmondeley, had a long-held dream to bring them home and, following months of negotiation and a huge logistical operation, the pictures were rehung in Norfolk. The story of the paintings is being featured in a BBC4 documentary, Britain's Lost Treasures: How Houghton Got Its Art Back, to be screened next Wednesday at 9pm.

Houghton Revisited will now run until November 24. To book call 01603 598640 or visit www.houghtonhall.com/houghtonrevisited. From September 29, admissions will start at 10.30am at half-hourly intervals with the last entry at 3pm.

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