Brighton Pavilion Saloon Restoration

Brighton Pavilion Saloon Restoration
September 6, 2018 Natalie Jones

Built for George IV when he was Prince of Wales, the Royal Pavilion in Brighton is one of the most extravagant buildings of its age. This weekend celebrates the grand re-opening of the Saloon, following conservation and restoration work started in 2002 and costing in the region of £390,000. The room is now faithfully restored to its 1823 glory.

Highlights of the restoration include silver and ‘pearl white’ wall decoration using platinum leaf and the revitalisation of the magnificent gilding. A newly commissioned reproduction circular carpet with a lavish design of dragons, sun rays and lotus leaves adorns the floor. Striking Geranium and Gold silk woven by Humphries Weaving, Sudbury has been used for wall panels, magnificent drapery and furniture.

© Jim Holden/Royal Pavilion & Museums

© Jim Holden/Royal Pavilion & Museums

(C) Brighton Pavilion

The design for the silk incorporated research from historic written inventories and watercolour references of the original room which gave descriptions of ‘His Majesty’s Geranium and Gold colour silk’ and containing a ‘bird motif’, ‘rosettes’ and ‘ferns’. From this Humphries Weaving were able to present a black and white photograph from their archive matching the description, which led to them being commissioned to undertake the lengthy task of re-drawing the design. Further discoveries relating to the colour and the layout came from silk fragments discovered in the archives of the Victoria & Albert Museum and the Royal Collection.

Custom dyed and woven in a luxurious pure silk tissue construction the finished fabric weighs over 36KG and the warp alone consists of 4000 miles of silk. You can read more on our project page.

Brighton Pavilion Saloon weaving

(C) Humphries Weaving

As part of project Humphries Weaving commissioned a film to document the research and design process involved in the complex pattern including interviews with David Beevers, Keeper of the Royal Pavilion, Annabel Westman, Textile Historian and the team at Humphries Weaving.

Visit our Brighton Pavilion Project page if you want to discover more. 

  • Humphries Weaving is a leading British manufacturer of custom Jacquard fabrics proudly based in Sudbury, Suffolk. We believe in design excellence and integrity above all else and use our extensive knowledge, unique archive, and technical skill to produce beautiful and interesting fabrics for the world’s most prestigious clients. For more information visit;
  • The restoration of the Saloon at the Royal Pavilion has been funded by donations from the public, Royal Pavilion & Museums Patrons and Members, and grants from The Monument Trust, The Mercers Company, The Georgian Group (FE Cleary Fund), The J Paul Getty Jr Charitable Trust, The Osborne-Wellard Trust, The Pebble Fund, the Royal Pavilion & Museums Foundation (registered charity) and the Royal Pavilion & Museums (Brighton & Hove City Council).

The Saloon