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  • Writer's pictureBaroness Bolsover

8 Things you MUST know about Baroness Bolsover

Updated: Jul 18, 2023

Whilst hosting one of my Bolsover Town Tours recently a guest asked if I'd made up the character of Baroness Bolsover for theatrical purposes! Absolutely not! I can assure you, I'm a real person.

Who is Baroness Bolsover

I was born in Dublin on the 8th of November 1834 and christened Augusta Mary Elizabeth Browne.

When did you become a Baroness

I was given the title of Baroness Bolsover, of Bolsover Castle, by my beloved Queen Victoria herself in April 1880. What an honour it was!

In fact, I’m the one and only Baroness of Bolsover Castle in the entire history of our planet… I think that’s quite an achievement!

Why did they make you a Baroness

To be honest, I think they felt sorry for me. You see, my husband Lt Gen Arthur Cavendish-Bentinck and I were in line to become the 6th Duke & Duchess of Portland. However, my husband died suddenly in 1877, leaving the title and its inheritance to go to our eldest son, William Arthur, when the 5th Duke died.

When William Aruthur, who was in fact my stepson, became the 6th Duke of Portland in 1879, his brothers and sister instantly became titled Lords and Lady. With no actual blood tie to the new Duke, I remained plain Mrs Cavendish-Bentinck. It was a bit embarrassing really, especially as I was practically running the household!

So, the Duke had a quiet word with Prime Minister Disraeli, who mentioned the delicate situation to the Queen, and before you know it...I'm the Baroness of Bolsover. How wonderful is that! It just goes to show, it's not what you know...

Did you live at Bolsover Castle

Oh no, it was practically a ruin by the time we arrived in the 1880’s, far too draughty for me. Our main residence was Welbeck Abbey in Nottinghamshire, but we loved our frequent visits to Bolsover Castle and Bolsover Parish Church where many of my family members, including my dear husband, lay in the Cavendish Crypt.

What does Baroness Bolsover DO

Town Tours

In the summer months I take groups for an unforgettable stroll through the medieval streets of Bolsover. I love to tell everyone about my role in the great Cavendish Dynasty, my Royal connections and of course I always throw in a little gossip for good measure. My guests can then enjoy a delicious Afternoon Tea at The Coffee Cup Cafe followed by a visit to Bolsover Castle. So do come and visit Bolsover for a splendid day out!

"A truly memorable experience. A joyous day of gossip, trivia and fascinating facts delivered by a cultured lady. Afternoon tea at The Coffee Cup far exceeded expectations. A great day for all ages." TripAdvisor

The DO'S & DON'TS of Afternoon Tea Etiquette

I also entertain people throughout the year with my splendid Afternoon Tea Etiquette Talk & Demonstration. It’s such fun taking people back to Victorian times and teaching them how to become the Crème de la Crème of the Tea Party.

I often make personal appearances at Events and private functions. The presence of a true Victorian Lady does make an occasion rather special.

"Many thanks to Baroness Bolsover for making our Golden Wedding Celebration so memorable… it was all a big secret until her entrance and then the fun began with a fabulous performance!" - Lee & Lorraine Bytheway, Bolsover

What is Baroness Bolsover like

"The Baroness is a wonderful character! Friendly, charming, humorous and knowledgeable...we had such fun!" - Gill Holmes, President, Swanwick WI

That's what I like to hear. I mean, you can’t take tea etiquette too seriously can you, though slurping is totally unacceptable and as for dunking… well, let’s not go there! I consider myself a liberated woman having cast off my corset years ago...dreadful things, I don’t know how we managed!

How can I book Baroness Bolsover

You can contact me in several ways, but please, I no longer recommend sending a pigeon... mind you, with the price of stamps these days!


07930 258 399

Let’s chat and see how I can make your event truly memorable.

or fill in the

Contact Form

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DO take a look at my other Blogs where I show you how to make a splendid Victorian Hat

You can also see my magnificent Victorian Tea Gown in the making

and discover more of my history and things to do in Bolsover.


Please, DO ask me some more questions at the end of the blog or leave your comments, there's so much more to discover!

And I’ll look forward to hearing from you and hopefully meeting you all VERY soon.


1 Comment

Joan Leckey
Joan Leckey
May 19

Many thanks to the wonderful Baroness Bolsover for a truly amazing interesting informative afternoon. Followed by a delicious afternoon tea. An absolute must for something educational and fun. Joan Leckey and Wendy Scott

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