Hatfield House is a country house set in a large park, it was built in 1611 by Robert Cecil, First Earl of Salisbury and Chief Minister to King James I and has been the home of the Cecil family ever since. The house, currently the home of Robert Gascoyne-Cecil, 7th Marquess of Salisbury, is open to the public.
The long gallery runs the entire length of the South Front, having been lengthened to 170 feet (51.8 m) in 1781. The rooms at each end were opened up by the removal of party walls and the insertion of tall, wooden pillars.
The ceiling, originally white, was covered with gold leaf by the 2nd Marquess who had been impressed by a gold ceiling he had seen in Venice.