Things to do at Wordsworth House and Garden
Step back in time and explore Wordsworth House and Garden in the Cumbrian town of Cockermouth. This immaculately preserved Georgian townhouse was the birthplace and childhood home of romantic poet William Wordsworth and his sister Dorothy.
Wordsworth House and Garden is now closed for the season
We have now closed our doors for the season so that we may look after our collections and prepare the house for opening in the spring. We look forward to welcoming you again on Monday 25 March, 2024.
A Georgian time capsule
Experience life in the 1770s on a visit to Wordsworth House and Garden, furnished and presented as it would have appeared when William and sister Dorothy lived here with their parents, brothers and servants.
You can take a guided tour or an audio tour, listen to a talk or explore the working kitchen and other rooms at your own pace.
Get hands-on at Wordsworth House
Friendly and knowledgeable guides are on hand to answer questions. You'll see real food on the dining table, a fire burning in the kitchen grate, and you can taste a recipe like one William and Dorothy might have eaten. Ink and quill pens are ready in the clerk’s office and if you play the piano you might like to try the replica harpsichord.
Discover the children’s bedroom which is full of toys and dressing-up clothes. There's also a daily children’s trail, and down in the cellar the household’s ghosts are waiting to tell their stories.
The exhibition rooms house a changing programme of displays. In the discovery room you'll find a permanent exhibition about William’s Lakeland legacy and his key role in the founding of the National Trust, along with family games.
This year's exhibition
"Much favor'd in my birthplace": memories of a house and a town
Saturdays to Wednesdays from Saturday 1st of April to Sunday November 5, 2023
From dentists to doctor’s daughters, custodians to shoemakers, former residents of Wordsworth House and local people share their stories and memories of life and times in Cockermouth, from 1930s to the present day.
Activities and events for 2023
For family friendly events, click here
Tours start every hour on the hour, last tour at 3pm.
Take in a tour to learn about the joys and sorrows of the Wordsworth family and life in Georgian times.
The garden that inspired a poet
Wordsworth House’s walled riverside garden was William’s secret childhood playground. It was here that he learned the love of nature that turned him into one of the world’s favourite poets.
Today, it is filled with the stillness and chill of winter. Wandering ‘lonely as a cloud’ among sleeping centuries-old varieties of flowers and fruit trees under a gentle covering of frost, it isn’t hard to picture the wild child born here 250 years ago and how his ‘sweet birthplace’ inspired a lifetime of creativity.
Beneath the foliage-shrouded terrace where he and his beloved sister Dorothy used to play, the Derwent, his ‘fairest of all rivers’, gurgles by.
Discover the history of William Wordsworth’s childhood home, which was a place of both great happiness and sorrow, and learn how it was saved from complete destruction.
Discover what family-friendly activities are on offer at Wordsworth House and Garden this autumn, from scary crafts and spooky stories by the fire to Georgian-inspired fun and games in the house, there is something for everyone no matter the weather.
Wordsworth House’s walled heritage garden, where William learned his love of nature, is filled with the colours, scents and sounds of the season.
What could be more romantic than to get married in the birthplace of one of the world’s greatest poets? Find out all you need to know about holding your wedding at Wordsworth House.
Historic buildings are a treasure trove of stories, art and collections. Learn more about what makes these places so special and plan your visit.
Alongside its natural outdoor wonders the Lake District also has many inspiring houses and buildings to visit, from the impressive Allan Bank where Wordsworth once lived, to the former farmhouse of Beatrix Potter.