Surveyor of the Queen's Pictures

Not to be confused with Surveyor of the Queen's Works of Art.

The office of the Surveyor of the King's/Queen's Pictures, in the Royal Collection Department of the Royal Household of the Sovereign of the United Kingdom, is responsible for the care and maintenance of the royal collection of pictures owned by the Sovereign in an official capacity – as distinct from those owned privately and displayed at Sandringham House and Balmoral Castle and elsewhere. The office has only been full-time since 1972. It now operates in a professional capacity with a staff of a dozen people.

Although the office dates from 1625, there has always been someone responsible for pictures in the Royal Household. Notable recent office-holders have included Sir Lionel Cust (1901–1927), Sir Kenneth Clark (1934–1944), Professor Anthony Blunt (1945–1972), and Sir Oliver Millar (1972–1988). The current Surveyor of the Queen's Pictures is Desmond Shawe-Taylor, appointed in 2005.[1]

List of Surveyors of the King's/ Queen's Pictures


  1. "Press Release: Appointment of new Surveyor of The Queen's Pictures, The Royal Collection". Royal Collection. 2004-12-17. Retrieved 2008-05-22.
  2. The London Gazette: no. 27291. p. 1576. 5 March 1901. Retrieved 15-10-2012.
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