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William Wordsworth and Dove Cottage

Grasmere is a pretty little village which
owes most of its current popularity as a tourist attraction to the fact
of William Wordsworth’s birth and having lived there. He is also buried
in a large family plot in the cemetery behind St. Oswald’s Parish Church.

Grasmere, the English Lake District
Aerial Photograph of Grasmere pcourtesy of Copyright
© 2005.

Highly exploited as a tourist centre,
Grasmere has an inordinate number of large hotels, considering its small
size, and almost every other shop is a tourist trinket shop, most of
which offer regional specialities such as Lakeland knitwear, Kendal
mint cake, vast arrays of artefacts in local slate, colour postcards,
Beatrix Potter figures and books, and assorted “rural” goodies. It also
is home to the Heaton Cooper Gallery, where this local Lakeland watercolour
artist permanently exhibits and sells his works.

William Wordsworth, the Lakeland PoetDove Cottage, GrasmereGrasmere's celebrated Gingerbread ShopWordsworth's Grave in Grasmere cemetery
William Wordsworth; Wordsworth’s Dove Cottage; Grasmere’s celebrated
Gingerbread Shop; Wordsworth’s Grave in Grasmere Cemetery.

William Wordsworth, the internationally famous Lakeland
poet was born and lived most of his life in the Lake District. From
1799-1808 he lived at Dove Cottage in the village of Grasmere, and from
1813 to his death in 1850 he made his home at Rydal Mount (see below),
overlooking the smallest lake in the National Park, Rydal Water.
One of Grasmere’s curiosities is its old Gingerbread Shop situated by
the Lych Gate of St Oswald’s Parish Church. Originally the village school
house from 1660-1854, it has since then been a celebrated gingerbread
bakery for 130 years, where Sarah Nelson’s original “secret” recipe
has been scrupulously followed. Gingerbread is despatched from here
to all parts of the British Isles and world-wide.
Grasmere is also a major starting point for hill walking, giving access
to the Langdales and to Easdale Tarn, in summer the latter being a pleasant
3 hour stroll (in summertime at least), and well worth the trek. Large
car parking (paying) to south and north of the village, a few minutes
walk – practically no parking central. Buses to the village from Windermere
and Keswick.

Dove Cottage

The everyday life of the Wordsworth
family is recorded in the famous journals of William’s sister, Dorothy,
to whom he was entirely devoted. Many of his best known poems were penned
here, including “Ode : Intimations of “Immortality”, “Michael” and “Resolution
and Independence”. Guided tour of the cottage are on offer, which includes
collections of his manuscripts, various pictures and personal memorabilia.

The Wordsworth Museum

Dove Cottage and the Wordsworth Museum, The Wordsworth
Trust, Dove Cottage, Grasmere LA22 9SH.
Telephone: 015394 35544. Fax: 015394 35748.
Email: Website:
Attached to Dove Cottage, this award winning museum contains much
of Wordsworth’s work, as well as a collection of early watercolour
paintings of the Lake District. A book, gift and souvenir shop is
on site, and there is a Dove Cottage teashop. Special exhibitions
are mounted throughout the year and school parties are catered for.
Owned by the Wordsworth Trust, a registered charity founded in 1890.

Admissison charges apply and discounted tickets are available for
seniors, families, students and those who collect a reciprocal discount
voucher from either Rydal Mount and Gardens or Wordsworth House, Cockermouth.
Opening: Every day from 9.30am – 5.30pm. Last admission is 5.00pm.
Occasionally closed for essential conservation work – please phone
to check before setting out as times and/or prices may have changed
since writing.
Buses operate from Windermere and Ambleside to Grasmere village, and
there is an every 20 minute bus service which stops directly at Dove
Cottage. For bus times and details telephone: 0870 608 2 608.
We hope you enjoy your visit to the award-winning Dove Cottage and
the Wordsworth Museum. Please find below some information about your
visit that you may find helpful.

Wordsworth & Rydal Mount

Located on the hillside off the Lakeside Road near
to Rydal Water (Lake) on the road to Grasmere from Ambleside. Signposted,
but easily missed. Open to the public. Further collections of Wordsworth
memorabilia, a pleasant garden with inspirational vistas. “Dora’s
Field” nearby, is famous for its spring carpet of daffodils which
prompted Wordsworth’s writing of the poem “Daffodils” which
he dedicated to his daughter Dora.

Tourist Information

Regrettably, there is no longer a Tourist Information
Centre in Grasmere – the nearest is at either Ambleside or Coniston.
See Also: Lakes Tourist Information Centres

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© John Moss, Papillon Graphics AD 2013 Manchester, United Kingdom – all rights reserved.
This page last updated 16 Nov 12.