Hidden gem

We’re delighted to announce that 78 Derngate was the winner of a recent award as ‘Hidden Gem’ at the prestigious UK Heritage Awards 2019. The awards were handed out at an exclusive ceremony celebrating the best heritage experiences and places to stay in the UK in London on 25th March.

The Awards are arranged by the UK’s leading heritage, tourism and destination marketing company, Visit Heritage, publisher of heritage guide Hudson’s and hotel guide, Signpost.

The winners of the UK Heritage Awards 2019 were crowned across twelve categories, which were adjudicated by a panel of judges formed of leading figures and experts on UK Heritage.

Recent visitors

We recently welcomed local MP Michael Ellis, Minister for Arts, Heritage and Tourism and Sir Nicholas Serota CH, Chairman of the Arts Council to 78 Derngate. Following a guided tour of the house, galleries and Visitor Centre with Trust Secretary Les Patterson both Sir Nicholas and Mr Ellis were most interested in seeing plans for the proposed atrium extension which The 78 Derngate Trust intends to carry out. This will be to provide an expanded retail area, new reception, tea room and additional exhibition / performance space at mezzanine level.

The appeal fund has now reached £25,000 which is a great start towards the £200,000 target to match-fund a pledge from Northampton Borough Council. 

To donate to the appeal please visit
78derngate.org.uk/appealforfunds for further information and link to the MyDonate site.

78 Derngate needs your help



As you may already be aware, a grant of up to £200,000 has been pledged to us by Northampton Borough Council to enhance the visitor experience here at The Charles Rennie Mackintosh House & Galleries. We plan to enlarge the existing atrium to facilitate an increased shopping area, a new reception area and tearoom and provide a new exhibition/performance space at mezzanine level. At the same time it will provide better permanent disabled access. The increased storage will free up rooms in 78 Derngate, enabling them to be open to the public for the first time. The opportunity also exists to reduce our carbon footprint by lowering heating costs.

As a self-funded charity, we depend on trading in order to survive and believe that this plan will produce greater income and lower costs, making the venue much more sustainable. An architect’s illustration of how it may look (subject to planning approval) is available to see

Our aim is to match fund the £200k by the summer and so we are asking Friends and supporters to donate in units of £100. For each unit of £100 the donors’ names will be recognised on engraved glass panelling located in the new atrium. So, if you wish to add 2 names, this will cost £200 and so on. We do of course welcome donations of any amount and individual groups could potentially donate money through their own fund-raising activities.

To donate, click on the “mydonate” link below, which automatically takes you to our secure fund-raising page. All donations are commission-free so the whole amount comes to the Trust.

Download architect's plan 1

Download architect's plan 2

Download architect's plan 3

Download architect's plan 4


More Mackintosh at 78

WashstandJan2019A project begun in 2015 with the purchase at auction of a ceramic washbowl has been completed almost four years later. When Charles Rennie Mackintosh designed the Guest Bedroom of 78 Derngate a washstand for the use of guests was included in the scheme.

W.J Bassett-Lowke’s photographs of the room which were published in
‘The Ideal Home’ in 1920 show that the washstand was replete with distinctive ceramic ware in a secessionist style. Research has shown that Joseph Maria Olbrich, indeed the very designer of the Secessionsgebäude (Secession Building) in Vienna is the designer of the washbowl. Mackintosh and Olbrich met on several occasions and his sympathies with the Secession and Wiener Werkstätte are reflected in the design of the Guest Bedroom - a ‘Gesamtkunstwerk’ and the other Mackintosh work at 78 Derngate.

The beautiful washstand made by Professor Jake Kaner from Nottingham Trent University was completed with the addition of the final component, the oak, glass and silk splashback panel just before Christmas. Funded by
The Friends of 78 Derngate it’s a splendid recreation that can be enjoyed by visitors to the house this coming 2019 season and beyond.

78 Derngate represented at Westminster Abbey

78 Derngate will be represented at the National Service of Thanksgiving at Westminster Abbey on 11 November 2018.

The service in the presence of The Queen, The President of Germany, The Prince of Wales, Duchess of Cornwall, Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Duke and Duchess of Sussex, Duke and Duchess of Gloucester, Duke of Kent and Prince Michael of Kent will be held to mark the Centenary of the Armistice at Westminster Abbey.

Over 300 people who have been involved with Heritage Lottery funded First World War projects across the UK will be in attendance. For 78 Derngate Sheila Harris, one of our Centenary Project volunteers will join with the Royal family, religious and political leaders and members of the public who have contributed to the Centenary on a national, regional and local level.

Our 2017 Centenary Project was made possible by a grant of ten thousand pounds from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF), which distributes the heritage share of National Lottery funding, supporting a wide variety of projects across the UK. HLF has invested £97 million in 2,200 First World War Centenary projects.

Recognising the huge contribution the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) and its First World War projects have made to the Centenary, the Department for Digital, Media and Sport invited HLF to nominate people to attend the Service.

Details of our Centenary Project, Centenary Exhibition, Events and Online Archive can be found at