Visit William Hogarth's House in Turnham Green, Chiswick, London

by KathleenDuffy

William Hogarth's 18th century house in Turnham Green, London is open to the public after being beautifully refurbished in 2011. Admission is free.

William Hogarth, artist and engraver, used his unique talents to critical effect as a social commentator and satirist of the world around him.

His series of engravings such as 'The Harlot's Progress', 'The Rake's Progress', and 'Marriage a la Mode', as well as his notorious 'Gin Lane' provide us with hard-hitting moral and political commentaries on urban life in the England of his day.

Examining his work we can almost hear the noise and chaos of London in the 1700s, smell the pollution and imagine shouldering our way through those crowded streets.

No wonder Hogarth and his family needed a country refuge, away from their main home in what is now known as Leicester Square.

William Hogarth's Home in Turnham Green, London

In the 1700s Turnham Green, at Chiswick in London, was a pastoral paradise and in 1749 Hogarth bought a handsome 18th century house which was protected by a high wall. Today Turnham Green is a bustling London suburb and a busy main road runs straight past the old house.

Hogarth's House seen from the garden
Hogarth's House seen from the garden
K Duffy

However, step inside the high walls surrounding Hogarth's house and you are transported back to a more tranquil era.

Mulberry tree, Hogarth's garden

The beautiful garden is dominated by a huge mulberry tree which is believed to be older than the house itself. Hogarth and his wife would collect the mulberries and make pies for the orphans who visited them from the Foundling Hospital in London.

From the exterior the house has the appearance of a small mansion, but looks can be deceiving. Once inside, visitors are surprised by the scale of the rooms.

The house could almost be described as 'cosy'.

Two floors are open to the public but the intriguing attic areas with their sloping eaves visible from the garden, are closed.

Intriguing staircase up to the attic
Intriguing staircase up to the attic
K Duffy

So, we must resist the urge to unhook the rope and follow the narrow stairs up into the roof.

Was this where the Foundling children slept on their visits to Mr Hogarth and his family? Did they wake in the mornings and gaze from these windows onto a scene that was so different to their London orphanage home?

No doubt it was the servants' quarters too. Whilst dressing, they may have glanced down onto the garden and seen Mr Hogarth making his way across the garden to his specially built studio, ready to begin work on yet another uncompromising creation.

A Room in Hogarth's House
A Room in Hogarth's House
K Duffy

The house is beautifully restored, being completed in 2011. There is an exhibition of photographs on the ground floor showing the process, step by step.

Skilled craftspeople have repaired the panelling, opened up the blocked fireplaces, brought shutters back into use and revealed the old floorboards.

The original paintwork has been analysed by experts who were able to match the colours of the period. Cool greens, pale blues and soft greys dominate.

A Room in Hogarth's House
A Room in Hogarth's House
K Duffy

The walls are decorated with Hogarth's famous prints and there are displays of many of his personal items, including artefacts relating to his family, neighbours and pets.

Window in Hogarth's House
Window in Hogarth's House
K Duffy

Over the centuries the house has been through the mill and had many different owners. Thankfully, most of the inhabitants did their best to keep the house alive in memory of Hogarth.

Photographs on display of the bomb damage it sustained in 1940 make its survival and restoration even more astonishing.

Hogarth's House - Visitor Information

Hogarth's Grave, Turnham Green

A visit to Hogarth's house makes a wonderful day out. I went with the London Cultureseekers, a Meetup Group.

Turnham Green is an interesting area very near the River Thames, so a walk along the river path might be an option too.

You could also visit Hogarth's grave (left)  in the nearby St Nicholas' Church cemetery.

Opening Times: The house is open from Tuesday to Sunday throughout the year from 12 - 5pm. There are special openings on Bank Holiday Mondays. The house is closed on Good Friday, Easter Sunday, Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year's Day.



Admission is free - although there may be a charge for special events.

Address and Contact Details: Hogarth's House, Hogarth Lane, London W4 2QN. Telephone: 020 8995 6757 Email: [email protected]

Travel: Tube: Turnham Green (District Line); Rail: Chiswick (SW Trains); Bus: 190

It is always a good idea to check with London Transport's online Journey Planner before starting your journey to check on any travel disruptions.


A little window in Hogarth's House
A little window in Hogarth's House
K Duffy

William Hogarth Items on E-Bay

Updated: 07/13/2013, KathleenDuffy
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KathleenDuffy on 03/27/2013

I agree - they are just tempting fate with that rope!! You'll love it there.

WiseFool on 03/27/2013

Oooh, I'd love to get up in that attic. If they cordon something off, it makes it all the more interesting, doesn't it? Thanks for this, Kathleen. Next time I'm in London, visiting Hogarth's House will definitely be on my list of things to do.

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