St James’s Palace

A History

Sir Kenneth Scott

    ISBN: 978 1 85759 659 5

    Size: 255 x 195 mm / 7.7 x 10 in.

    Binding: Hardback

    Pages: 160

    In association with:

    Date published: November, 2010

    UK £25 /US $45


  • First extended study on St James’s Palace in recent times
  • Written by an acknowledged expert on the royal household


St James’s Palace was built by Henry VIII in the 1530s on the site of a former leper hospital, and as such is one of London’s oldest royal palaces and host to some of the most extraordinary events in British history. It was at St James’s Palace that Mary Tudor signed the treaty surrendering Calais, where Elizabeth I held her Councils of War at the time of the Spanish Armada and where Charles I spent his final night before his execution. Today, the Palace remains the official seat of the monarchy – ‘the Court of St James’ – playing host to many state and ceremonial occasions. This delightful book is filled with quality reproductions to illustrate the witty and informative text, bringing to life the history of the royal palace. Sir Kenneth Scott, an author very familiar with the workings of a royal household, gives an illuminating and fascinating account of the history of St James’s Palace, which is the only one of the Royal Palaces not open to the public.

Author information

After school and university in Edinburgh, Sir Kenneth Scott joined the Diplomatic Service and served in a variety of posts including Moscow, Bonn, Washington and Brussels before being appointed Ambassador to Yugoslavia in 1982. From 1985 to 1996 he was one of the Private Secretaries to The Queen, and during most of that time he lived in an apartment in St James’s Palace. In 1996, after retirement from the Royal Household, he spent nine months in Sarajevo as Chairman of the Provisional Election Commission which organised the first democratic elections in Bosnia after the war. He now lives in Edinburgh.