The paintings in this room are of prize cattle bred by the John Charles (‘Jack’), the Third Earl Spencer. After the death of his wife Esther in 1818, Lord Spencer found consolation in farming and stock-breeding. A trusted politician, known as ‘Honest Jack’, he was Chancellor of the Exchequer, and Leader of the House of Commons.
This room was once the Earl of the day’s bedroom. In previous centuries the family slept on the ground floor while guests were accommodated on the first floor. This fashion was still in vogue in the 1770s when Henry Holland began his huge reworking of the house. The Sunderland Room consequently escaped his attentions and boasts some beautiful original moulding.