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Winfield House, London

Winfield House is a mansion set in 12 acres (49,000 m²) of grounds in Regent's Park, London, the largest private garden in or close to central London after that of Buckingham Palace. It is the official residence of the United States Ambassador to the United Kingdom (or, formally, to the Court of St James's).

History

The first house on the site was Hertford Villa, later known as St Dunstan's. This was the largest of the eight villas originally built in Regent's Park as part of John Nash's development scheme. Occupants of the villa included the Marquesses of Hertford, newspaper proprietor Lord Rothermere, and the American financier Otto H. Kahn. The villa was damaged by fire in the 1930s and was subsequently purchased by the American heiress Barbara Hutton, who demolished it and replaced it with the existing Neo-Georgian mansion designed by Leonard Rome Guthrie of the English architectural practice Wimperis, Simpson and Guthrie. The house's name derives from Barbara Hutton's grandfather Frank Winfield Woolworth and likely his famed Glen Cove Estate, Winfield Hall. Hutton's only child, Lance Reventlow, was born in Winfield House.

In World War II Winfield House was used by a Royal Air Force barrage balloon unit. It was visited during the war by Cary Grant, who was Barbara Hutton's husband at the time. After the war Hutton sold the house to the American government for one dollar, and it has been the official residence of the United States Ambassadors to the Court of St James's since 1955. Among the ambassadors in residence has been Walter Annenberg, Anne Armstrong, and John Hay Whitney, and the house has been visited by Queen Elizabeth II, U.S. presidents and many distinguished guests.

Winfield House has been listed on the United States Secretary of State’s Register of Culturally Significant Property, which denotes properties owned by the Department of State that have particular cultural or historical significance.

In light of the planned relocation of the Chancery to Nine Elms in Wandsworth, it is possible that the official residence of the Ambassador may also be relocated to a more convenient location.

See also

External links

Coordinates: 51°31′51″N 0°09′52″W / 51.5308°N 0.1644°W / 51.5308; -0.1644

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