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Althorp House was built by Robert Spencer, 2nd Earl of Sunderland , in 1688 and burial site for Princess Diana

The estate has been the ancestral home of the Spencer family since the 16th century. Their fortune derived from its earliest known ancestor, Sir John Spencer of Wormleighton , Warwickshire, who bought Althorp in 1508 from the Catesby family with the huge profits from his sheep-rearing business.The house was originally a red brick Tudor building but its appearance was radically altered in the 18th century when the architect Henry Holland was commissioned to make extensive changes starting in 1788.

The interior of the house is generally considered its strongest asset as the Spencer family has assembled an impressive collection of portrait art including several pieces painted by the Flemish master Anthony van Dyck. One of the rooms in the estate is called the Queen Mary bedroom, which was used by Queen Mary and George V during their visit to the estate in 1913.

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Linked toFamily: Spencer/Digby (F13625)

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