The house was built for Lady Mary Reade, a young widow who re-married not long after its completion in 1623. Her second husband was Sir Edward Spencer of Althorp, Northamptonshire - an ancestor of the late Diana, Princess of Wales. Sir Edward and Lady Mary were still owners of Boston Manor in 1642, when the Battle of Brentford took place nearby, during the Civil Wa
In 1670 the house was extended, following its purchase for £5,136 by James Clitherow, a City merchant. It remained the home of seven generations of the Clitherow family during the next two-and-a-half centuries, until it became the property of the local Council in 1924.
Today the magnificent 17th century State Rooms on the first floor, together with the Dining Room on the ground floor, can be visited and enjoyed free of charge.
The Dining Room as it was in the early 19th century. King William IV and Queen Adelaide, who had long been friends of the Clitherows, came to dine here one evening in 1834 - a rare instance of a reigning monarch being received as the guest of a commoner.
Upstairs on the first floor are the State Rooms, two of which contain magnificently decorated plaster ceilings of 1623. That in the Drawing Room incorporates nineteen allegorical figures representing the Five Senses, Four Elements, Three Virtues, Peace and Plenty, War and Peace, and Father Time flanked by two Cupids. The sumptuous Jacobean mantelpiece includes a biblical scene showing the Angel stopping Abraham from sacrificing Isaac. Further up the stairway towards the second floor landing some rare 18th century wallpaper can be seen.
Boston Manor Road, Brentford, Middlesex, TW8 9JX.