Frederick Augustus and Frederica Charlotte Ulrica Catherina
Prince Frederick Augustus, Duke of York and Albany (1763-1827) 'The Grand Old Duke of York' of nursery rhyme fame was the second eldest son of King George III. He bought Oatlands in 1794. (See also Mary Ann Clark at Columb's House, Weybridge.)
Frederica Charlotte Ulrica Catherina, Duchess of York (1767-1820) Princess Frederica of Prussia, eldest daughter of Frederick William II, King of Prussia.
Frederic and Frederica, the Duke and Duchess of York, lived at Oatlands House from 1794. This is where the Oatlands Park Hotel stands today. The marriage was not a happy one, and the Duke kept a mistress nearby at Columb's House. After a brief unhappy marriage and separation the Duchess remained at Oatlands. She found great solace in her pet animals, creating quite a menagerie there - this included her favourite dog 'Satan' and a racehourse called 'Eclipse'. The graveyard she made for her dogs is mentioned in 'Three Men In A Boat' by Jerome K. Jerome (1889).
She died at Oatlands Park in 1820 and was buried in Weybridge old church. In 1822 York Column in Weybridge was funded by public subscription and erected in her memory as a testament to her popularity as a generous local benefactress. The inscription reads: "This column was erected by the inhabitants of Weybridge and its vicinity on the 6th day of August 1822 by voluntary contribution. In token of their sincere esteem and regard for her late Royal Highness the most excellent and illustrious Frederica Charlotte Ulrica Catherina, Duchess of York. Who resided for upwards of thirty years at Oatlands in this parish, exercising every Christian virtue and died, universally regretted, on the 6th day of August 1820.
Ye poor, suppress the mournful sigh,
Her spirit is with Christ on High,
In those bright realms of heavenly peace,
Where charity shall never cease,
Her deeds of mercy and of love,
Are registered in courts above."