who was Horace Walpole?
was the younger son of Prime Minister, Sir Robert, and at the young
age of 30 had already established himself as 'a man of letters',
an MP and a collector.
At the time he bought the house in 1747, Twickenham was a popular
area, occupying a point half way between two royal residences -
Richmond Lodge and Hampton Court.
The town had also attracted artisans including Henry Fielding, Jonathan
Swift, Alexander Pope and actresses like Kitty Clive and Hannah
Walpole described the town as London's 'Tivoli'.
During his 50 years at Strawberry Hill (until Walpole's death in
1797) he was one of the most notable figures of his generation.
was a great letter writer, providing future historians with a rich
picture of 18th century life, and he also became renowned as one
of the century's greatest collectors and antiquaries.
Walpole created the first private printing press (the Strawberry
Hill Press) and he was the author of the first gothic novel The
Castle of Otranto.
He was also an accomplished essayist, historian, painter and gardener.
However, most of all, he became known as the man who created the
first significant house of the Gothic Revival - Strawberry Hill.
BBC London's Gillian Joseph takes a look around Strawberry Hill