Experience Georgian life at first hand

Hands on: A visitor in replica costume tries writing with a quill pen

Hands on: A visitor in replica costume tries writing with a quill pen

Autumn is an atmospheric time at Wordsworth House and Garden. There's a warming fire burning in the kitchen, and the garden where William and Dorothy loved to play is aglow with shades of russet and gold.

On Mondays and Thursdays during term time, 30-minute house taster tours offer an insight into the family life that forged one of our best-loved poets. The tours, which are free with entry, are at 11.30am and 12.15pm. They’re very popular, though, so please arrive in plenty of time.

The maid or manservant is hard at work in the kitchen - and always keen to chat - on Tuesdays and Saturdays. You can also join a special 20-minute talk on the horrible truth about Georgian life. Talks, which cost £2, are at 11.30am and 12pm, and the servants are in until 3pm.

On Sundays, families can borrow an Explorer Bag full of trails, tools and toys to help them delve into the nooks and crannies of the house and garden.

There are also lots of reproduction toys and dressing up clothes in the children’s bedroom. If you can't find something in your size, just ask!

In the clerk’s office, you can write with a quill and ink, while in the kitchen there's always an 18th-century recipe to taste, and anyone with a musical bent can play the reproduction harpsichord in the drawing room.

Spooky stories at Hallowe'en

During the October school holiday week, there are family trails, storytelling sessions or activities every day.

On Monday 27, Wednesday 29 and Friday 31, get cosy by the kitchen fire as the servants tell some of the traditional Cumbrian spooky tales William and Dorothy might have enjoyed. Sessions are at 11.30am and 2.30pm and last about 20 minutes. They're free with entry and suitable for children aged seven and above.

Children can get busy in the kitchen making clapbread on Tuesday 28 or Sunday 2 November, while on Thursday 30, they can have a go at fashioning a pastry pumpkin. Drop in any time between 11.30am and 3.30pm.

There's also a chance to listen to the servants’ stories after dark - and explore the whole of Wordsworth House by lamplight - on Saturday 1 November from 6pm to 9pm. Spooky storytelling sessions are at 6.30pm and 7.30pm.

Normal admission price applies to all activities. Call 01900 820884 for more information.