Inside the Queen & Margaret’s childhood nursery – toys from ‘all over the British Empire’

Archive footage of the royal children

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The Queen, 95, was born in 1926 and grew up alongside her younger sister Princess Margaret, who sadly died in 2002, aged 71. When the Princesses became children of the King, they moved into Buckingham Palace in 1936. But where did they live before this?

At the time of Elizabeth’s birth King George V, Elizabeth and Margaret’s grandfather, was on the throne.

As a child during this period, the Queen (then Princess Elizabeth) lived at 145 Piccadilly with Princess Margaret and their parents, the Duke and Duchess of York.

Prince Albert and Elizabeth Bowes Lyon as they were known later became King George VI and Queen Elizabeth.

The current Queen’s childhood home is now the site for InterContinental London Park Lane.

However, at the time of Elizabeth’s childhood, it boasted a ballroom, a library and twenty-five bedrooms.

It also held two nurseries for the young Princesses.

Photos taken inside the royal home both during and after they lived there have shared a peek inside the night and day nursery, both of which were decorated with red carpets.

Located on the top floor, the night nursery featured a fireplace with a mirror resting on top and a large window on the back wall.

Furniture-wise, a wooden cot was positioned to one side with a large armchair next to it.

There was also a dressing table with a mirror sat in front of the window and a chest of drawers offered space for the future Queen’s clothes.

The day nursery also featured a grand fireplace and patterned armchairs, as well as a wooden table and chairs and a tall dresser with glass cupboards displaying ornaments and toys.

Royal author Jane Dismore published ‘Princess: The Early Life of Queen Elizabeth II’ in 2017.

In the book, the author said: “It was filled with toys and curios from all over the British Empire.

“There were tiny, exquisitely dressed dolls; china cottages and palaces; model soldiers and ships; animals, birds and fishes in finely-blown glass.

“Many of them gifts from Queen Mary.”

Her Majesty moved into the Piccadilly home at the age of one and her younger sister was born three years later in 1930 when the pair then shared these rooms.

Princess Elizabeth was later given her own bedroom.

After her father King George VI took the throne in 1936, the family took up residence at Buckingham Palace.

Their former home, 145 Piccadilly, was put on the market for rental.

Luckily, the royals were not at the property in December 1940 when the home was badly damaged by World War Two bombs.

Elizabeth and Margaret’s childhood home is now the site of InterContinental London Park Lane.

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