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Wordsworth's Lake District.

Updated on January 20, 2017
Rydal Water, where Wordsworth lived in later life
Rydal Water, where Wordsworth lived in later life | Source

My house was owned by Wordsworth-here's my personal guide to Wordsworth's Lake District

I live in a house owned by William Wordsworth, close to Dove Cottage Grasmere where Wordsworth wrote his most famous poems, including "Daffodils" . Grasmere lies in the county of Cumbria, in the Lake District National Park, one of the most popular areas of England for holidays and vacations.

Here's my personal insider's guide to Wordsworth's Lake District. Now is the time to plan your next visit to this wonderful area.

In 1770, William Wordsworth was born in Cockermouth , on the Northern edge of the Lake District, just outside what is now the Lake District National Park. Wordsworth spent most of his life in Grasmere and Rydal, in the heart of the Lake District. He wrote most of his poems at Dove Cottage. Grasmere., just half of mile from my home.

The villages of Grasmere and Rydal are about 3 miles apart, and I live halfway between the two, at White Moss House , a house that William Wordsworth actually owned. White Moss House is hidden behind the trees at the end of the lake in this photo of Rydal Water.( one of my own photos)

The Lake District that inspired Wordsworth, and many other poets and artists, continues to welcome thousands of visitors every year.

If you are a Wordsworth fan, you will probably like to know about the three Wordsworth homes that you can visit, Wordsworth House at Cockermouth, Dove Cottage Grasmere, and Rydal Mount , Rydal.

In this web page you can find out about Wordsworth's birthplace, Wordsworth House at Cockermouth. In the years before Wordsworth settled in Grasmere he lived in a variety of places, including Paris, and you can find more about his early life further down this page.

Wordsworth wrote his best poetry at Dove Cottage, Grasmere, and there is information here about Dove Cottage. Dove Cottage is 15 minutes walk from my home. White Moss House.

In later life, on Mayday 1813 ( 200 years ago this year) Wordsworth settled happily at Rydal Mount, Rydal, and I'll tell you about that too.

White Moss House where I live, was the only house Wordsworth owned, and there is a personal look at White Moss House .

If you are planning to visit the Lake District, or if you are a Wordsworth fan just dreaming of a visit to Wordsworth's Lake District, I hope you enjoy my personal look at this wonderful area.

I have included some information on things to do in the Lake District, Grasmere and Ambleside. If you would like information, I've written lots more about the Lake District- there are links below . If you have a specific question, please leave a message for me in the Guestbook and I'll answer it as soon as possible.

All pictures are my own or under the name of Cumbria Tourism., and may not be used without permission

Wordsworth's birthplace Cockermouth


William Wordsworth's Birthplace

Wordsworth was born in Cockermouth, on the edge of the Lake District.

Wordsworth's birthplace in Cockermouth is run by the National Trust.. They have recently restored the house, so that it now looks as it did when Wordsworth was born there.

The House and garden are open from March to October. There is a National trust shop at Wordsworth House which is open all year round.

A brief look at the life of William Wordsworth - A quick guide to Wordsworth's wanderings

This Portrait hangs in the National Portrait Gallery, London
This Portrait hangs in the National Portrait Gallery, London | Source

A summary of Wordsworth's Life

The portrait is William Wordsworth in 1842, aged 72- the elder statesman of English Literature.

William Wordsworth was born on 7 April 1770 in Cockermouth,and lived in a house now owned by the National Trust and known as Wordsworth House. His father John was land agent to Sir James Lowther, who owned the house. William attended school in Penrith between 1776 and 1777. His mother died when he was 8, and his father died when Wiilam was 13.

Willaim left Penrith, and went to stay in Hawkshead , going to Hawkshead Grammar School . He did well at school, and went on to St John's College Cambridge.( If you are visiting the Lake District, you might like to know that Beatrix Potter's House Hill Top, Sawrey is just outside the village of Hawkshead)

William had rather a wild life after Cambridge for a few years, spending time in Revolutionary France, and fathering a daughter, of whom he had no knowledge till much later.

Wordsworth had no income of his own, but he did have a wealthy admirer, who in 1795 gave him £900 ( a pretty large sum in those days) which gave him enough money to write without having to take another job.

In 1795 William and his sister Dorothy rented a cottage in Dorset, in South West England. Here they met fellow poets Samuel Taylor Coleridge and Robert Southey. William and Coleridge then decided to tour the Lake District, which William knew well. At Grasmere the poets saw Dove Cottage, an empty building on the edge of Grasmere Village which had been an inn, The Dove and Olive Branch.Wordsworth decided to rent it.

In December 1799 , (a time which we celebrate every year at Dove Cottage,) William and Dorothy moved into Dove Cottage Grasmere.

In 1802 William married his childhood companion Mary Hutchinson, and the first three of their five children were born. Dorothy continued living with William and Mary and his family for the rest of her life.

The poet Thomas de Quincey often stayed at Dove Cottage, but you can see from the pictures that it was too small for this household. In 1808 they moved to Allan Bank in Grasmere, a large house with lovely views, but an building which Wordsworth disliked. In 1811 they moved again to the Vicarage, taking Coleridge with them this time. Two of the Wordsworth children died there, and the family was very unhappy at the Rectory.

In 1813 the Wordsworth family moved to the lovely Rydal Mount, in the Village of Rydal, 2 miles from Grasmere. Rydal Mount was owned by the local landlords, the Le Fleming family, who still own much of Rydal.

The Wordsworth family were very happy at Rydal Mount, and Wordsworth died at Rydal Mount, on St Georges Day, 23 April 1850 at the ripe old age of 80.

William Wordsworth was buried in the Chuchyard at St Oswald's Church, Grasmere

All the homes Wordsworth lived in were rented. Dove Cottage is open to the public, and along with the Wordsworth museum at Dove Cottage is it an absolutely must for any Wordsworth fan to visit.

Rydal Mount is also open to the public, and has lovely gardens with views over Windermere. The contrast between the two house is fascinating.

Still wanting to keep a foothold in the Grasmere Parish ( it gave him a vote on local affairs) , he bought White Moss House for his son, Willie in 1827. It is the only house Wordsworth ever owned.

White Moss House stayed in the Wordsworth family till the 1930s, and has been in my family since 1970.We have lived at White Moss House since 1981.

If you would like to stay nearby, we have a holiday cottage available to rent. You can read about our Grasmere Cottage, Brockstone, here.

Grasmere and Rydal Water.

An ideal base for a literary vacation in the footsteps of Wordsworth

Rydal Water and Grasmere Lake , pictured below, were sources of inpsiration to Wordsworth and the Lake District poets. To understand why Wordsworth and the Romantic poets were inspired by the Lake District, just look at the pictures!

Grasmere viewed on a walk from White Moss House ( my home)

Grasmere Lake and Village
Grasmere Lake and Village | Source

Here's photo of Rydal Water from my blog.

Rydal Water on a beautiful September day.
Rydal Water on a beautiful September day. | Source

Wordsworth wrote this peom about Rydal Water

"Like a fair sister of the sky, Unruffled doth the blue lake lie, The mountains looking on"

He must have been talking about a still day like the one when I took my photo.

The area between Rydal Water and Grasmere is White Moss. That's where I live at White Moss House

White Moss is also the starting point for White Moss Walks

The White Moss Common area is owned and managed by The Lowther Estate , who have recently designated and signposted White Moss Walks as a top walking attraction.

Dove Cottage Grasmere- Wordsworth's Lake District - Lake District Home of Wordsworth during his most productive years as a poet.

This tiny house was the home of Wordsworth and his sister Dorothy . In her journal, Dorothy writes about life there, and the walks round Grasmere, White Moss and Rydal. Dorothy has been called "the woman behind the man", and her writings and observations were vital to her brother's poetry. We know from reading Dorothy's journals that she was the inspiration behind Wordsworth's most famous poem Daffodils.

Dove Cottage, Grasmere, where Wordsworth wrote his most famous poetry

Wordsworth's home,Dove Cottage, Grasmere
Wordsworth's home,Dove Cottage, Grasmere | Source

Dove Cottage is a must for every lover of Wordsworth. To find out more about Dove Cottage and the Romantic poets, click on the link below. It's a mine of information, even if you can't actually visit in person.

Rydal Mount

Image thanks to David Willis and Cumbria Tourism. May not be reused without permission of Cumbria Tourism

Rydal Mount- Wordsworth's other home in the Lake District - Wordsworth spent the last part of his life at Rydal Mount, half a mile from White Moss House

This lovely old house has views over Windermere, and beautiful gardens. It was here that Wordsworth received visits from his many admirers during his later years.

This year Rydal Mount is celebrating the 200th Anniversary of Wordsworth moving there on Mayday 1813.

Grasmere is at the heart of Wordsworth Country, in England's Lake District. - White Moss House Grasmere, owned by Wordsworth, now a historic guest house

England's Lake District National park was home to Wordsworth and the Romantic poets, painted by Constable, Turner, and artists through the ages. Home to Beatrix Potter. Millions of visitors every year visit this most beautiful area .

Wordsworth's Lake District

White Moss House , my home, owned by Wordsworth:
LA22 9SE

get directions

I'm lucky to live in a house owned by Wordsworth. You can stay nearby in our holiday cottage, Brockstone Grasmere.

William Wordsworth and his wife Mary

Wordsworth Houses Open to the Public - Find more details about opening hours and charges

Wordsworth House at Cockermouth, Dove Cottage at Grasmere, and Rydal Mount at nearby Rydal, all all open to the public, and are a must see visit for Wordsworth fans.

The Grasmere and Alfoxden Journals (Oxford World's Classics)
The Grasmere and Alfoxden Journals (Oxford World's Classics)
We are so lucky that Dorothy Wordsworth kept these journals. They give an intimate insight into the daily life of one of the world's greatest ever poets, her brother William Wordsworth.

White Moss House, Rydal Water, Grasmere, English Lake District

Home of William Wordsworth and the Romantic Poets

William Wordsworth wrote his best poetry at the tiny Dove Cottage, Grasmere.Half a mile away is White Moss House, bought by Wordsworth for his son Willie.Rydal Mount, where Wordsworth lived in his later years, is also half a mile from White Moss.

The Wordsworth family lived at White Moss House until the 1930s.This is the only house Wordsworth owned. For many years we operated a highly rated small hotel and restaurant at White Moss House, but we have now retired and are loving just living in the wonderful house.

If you would like to stay nearby, we have a vacation rental cottage called Brockstone that we let as a Grasmere holiday cottage . In the main season we rent the cottage for stays of 1 week, arriving Saturdays. At quieter times and at the last minute, short breaks may be available. For further information you can also look at this Hub page that I've written about our Lakes Holiday cottage

This new book has lots of walks in Wordsworth's Lake District. Retrace the steps of the poet. A great value and very helpful book that you can slip in your pocket on your walks.

The Wordsworth Rose at White Moss House Grasmere

This rose could be 200 years old

Our gardener, a fount of all local gardening knowledge,thinks this old rose could have been here when William Wordsworth stopped by and sat in the porch whilst visiting his son, Willie and family!

It blooms for only a short time, its roots are lost from view beneath the terrace, but it has a great scent, flowers spectacurly every June, and we love it!

Here are more articles about Wordsworth and the Lake District

William Wordsworth's Daffodils
William Wordsworth's poem, Daffodils, was written just half a mile from my home. Often known by its first line "I wandered lonely as a Cloud" the p...

10 things to do in Grasmere.
Let me introduce you to my village-Grasmere, home to William Wordsworth.Grasmere is a small village in the heart of England's Lake District.,visited by thou...

Wordsworth's Lake District.
I live in a house owned by William Wordsworth, close to Dove Cottage Grasmere where Wordsworth wrote his most famous poems, including "Daffodils" ....

Great Lake District books for your Kindle - Here's my choice of Kindle books for Lake District fans

Guide books, Wordsworth's poetry, Beatrix Potter and more. All can be downloaded to your Kindle.

Here's my personal choice.

BBC Radio Cumbria covers the whole county, including the Wordsworth's Lake District. - Check out all the local news, weather, traffic, and news of all the event

BBC radio Cumbria website is a mine of information and up to date news from Worsdworth's Lake District and the rest of Cumbria county.

The Westmorland Gazette is a local Newspaper - The Gazette is based in Kendal, South Lakeland

For current news and information from the local newspaper of South Cumbria , the Lake District.( Cumbria is made up of the old counties of Westmorland and Cumberland), click on this link.

The Cumberland News is the local paper of North Cumbria.

The Northern part of the Lake District is covered by the Cumberland News and Star as the local paper.

You can buy beautiful photographs of the Lake District online - Talented local photographer Stewart Smith has an online store why you can buy these gems

Autumn, Helm Crag and Grasmere. Photo by kind permission of Stewart Smith, Stewart Smith Photography. All rights reserved.Thanks to stewyphoto and flickr

Take a look at these simply stunning photos of Wordsworth's Lake District taken by young local photograper Stewart Smith- (one of my Twitter friends).

They make great gifts Order online. Go on!..

Dorothy Wordsworth's Grasmere journals

These are a wonderful record of the life William and Dorothy Wordsworth's time at Dove Cottage , Grasmere in the early 19th Century.

William Wordsworth's greatest writing

The Oxford press definitive book.

William Wordsworth - The Major Works: including The Prelude (Oxford World's Classics)
William Wordsworth - The Major Works: including The Prelude (Oxford World's Classics)
This book has all the major works of William Wordsworth in a clear format. Small enough to carry with you when visiting Wordsworth's Lake District. This will fit into your bag, so that you can bring it out and read the poems at the places where Wordsworth wrote them.

I'm written lots more articles about Wordsworth's Lake District

Find out more about the Lake District from a local!

Written in Grasmere, about Grasmere, Wordsworth, Ambleside, the Lake District, Cumbria, Lake District Food.... the list goes on!

Traditional Lake District Food
Traditional Lake District Food is spicy and distinctive. Lake District recipes as we now know developed in the 18th century ,when exotic spices, fruits and...

Rydal Water Walk.
This walk round the lovely lake of Rydal Water, in England's Lake District, takes most people about 2 hours. It takes in some of the most beautiful scenery i...

Things to do in Ambleside,English Lake District
Ambleside is a village in Cumbria, in England's glorious Lake District. Ambleside is the base for many Lake District activities, in the centre of the Lake Di...

Herdwick sheep , the Lake District sheep.
Herdwick sheep are the sheep of Cumbria, in the Northwest corner of England. The Lake District is the most famous part of Cumbria, loved by visitors for its ...

Brockstone Cottage Rydal Water
Brockstone Cottage Rydal Water

Lake District accommodation

Fans of Wordsworth's poetry will really want to stay in the Lake District.

There is a huge choice of accommodation in the Lake District.

We have a wonderful holiday rental cottage , Brockstone, which sleeps up to four guests and has the most amazing views over Rydal Water and the Lakeland fells.

The photo shows Rydal Water, with Brockstone Cottage perched on the hill, and White Moss House just hidden by the trees below.

For a wide range of Lake District accommodation, Cumbria Tourism Go Lakes has a great choice.

If you are looking for a self catering holiday rental look at Lake District Cottages and be spoilt for choice.

Useful Guidebooks for your visit to Wordsworth's Lake District - Finding your way and places to stay in Wordsworth's Lake District.

Walking with Wordsworth: In the Lake District
Walking with Wordsworth: In the Lake District
Walking and Wordsworth in one book. Follow the poets footsteps and walk the Lake District.

Reading this in the UK? Here are the top selling Lake District books - Great gifts for lovers of the Lakes

Have you been to the Lakes? Would you like to visit? Are you tempted by this lens? Do you have any suggestions of what I could add?

I'd love you to leave a message- thank you!


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