Waddesdon Manor is one of the best known of the Rothschild houses, built between 1874-1884 by Ferdinand de Rothschild (1839-1898). When Ferdinand died, the property passed to his sister, Miss Alice de Rothschild (1847-1922). It was Miss Alice who introduced the motor-car to Waddesdon.
In 1906, a journalist from The Car magazine came to inspect the Waddesdon garages, noting that Miss Alice used a small de Dion to get about the estate, but when visiting family at Mentmore Towers or Tring Park, she used a 25 hp CGV double landau. It had a very long wheelbase, with a body built to her own design – to ensure ‘maximum comfort’.
Miss Alice is remembered for her meticulous care and instructions concerning the interior of Waddesdon and its collections and this care extended to the grounds too – she designed a drip tray to fit under the car so that every drop of oil or water was collected so as not to spoil the gravel of her drive, or those of any relative she happened to visit.