Dove Cottage & The Wordsworth Museum

Dove Cottage, the family home of William Wordsworth
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Visit the traditional Lakeland cottage and home of the poet William Wordsworth, who in 1799 went on a walking tour of the Lake District and fell in love with Grasmere and Dove Cottage, and within a few months had set up home here with his sister, Dorothy.

Whilst living in this inspirational setting Wordsworth produced the most famous and best-loved of his poems and Dorothy wrote her famous Grasmere Journals.

Step into Dove Cottage and hear about the Wordsworths' daily life and their many famous visitors, on a fascinating guided tour, whilst enjoying the atmosphere of the house, restored to how it was in 1808 and containing Wordsworth's own possessions.

Take a stroll in the delightful fellside cottage garden that Wordsworth created.

Explore the museum and discover the greatest collection of the Wordsworths’ original letters, journals and poems in the world. Discover his amazing life and the events that shaped his thoughts and poetry.

There are also exhibitions and events throughout the year, including family activities in the school holidays.

Round off your visit with a browse in our shop and afternoon tea in the tearoom.

This is the only place in the world where Wordsworth's work and possessions can be experienced in the place where they were created and used. A must-see all-weather attraction for all Lake District visitors - we look forward to welcoming you here soon!

Venue Type:

Museum, Historic house or home, Gallery, Association or society, Festivals, Heritage site, Library, Archive

Opening hours

1 November 2014 – 28 February 2015
Open daily, 9.30am – 4.30pm

1 March – 31 October 2015
Open daily, 9.30am – 5.00pm
Last admission 4.30pm

1 November 2015 – 28 February 2016
Open daily, 9.30am – 4.30pm

There will be no access to Dove Cottage on Tuesdays during December and February but the Museum and Shop will remain open.

Closed 24–26 December and for four weeks during January (dates TBC).
Last admission 4pm

Admission charges

Adult: £7.75
Students: £6.75 (on production of valid student card)
Child: £4.50 (under-6 go free)
Family: (1 or 2 adults and 1-3 children) £17.20
Patrons and Friends: free
National Art Pass: free


  • National Art Pass
Getting there

The car park for Dove Cottage & The Wordsworth Museum are located on the A591, the main Kendal–Keswick road through the central Lake District. Look for the big blue sign just south of the Grasmere mini-roundabout.

The entire collection of this museum is a Designated Collection of national importance.

The collections held at Dove Cottage and the Wordsworth Museum are founded on the papers, books and personalia which Wordsworth bequeathed to his family. Through this material, and subsequent collecting, the museum covers not only the lives and works of Wordsworth and his circle, but the wider phenomenon of British Romanticism, and the role of the Lake District in inspiring writers and artists of the Romantic Movement.

Aside from its outstanding manuscript and portrait collections, the museum holds important paintings, prints and drawings of the Lake District. Among these is Joseph Wright of Derby's painting of Ullswater, David Cox's 'Morecambe Bay Sands', and drawings by Joseph Farington.

Collection details

Social History, Personalities, Fine Art, Decorative and Applied Art, Costume and Textiles, Archives

Key artists and exhibits

  • Designated Collection
Exhibition details are listed below, you may need to scroll down to see them all.
WWW Poster

Wordsworth, War & Waterloo

  • 16 March — 1 November 2015 *on now

On 18th June 1815, the Battle of Waterloo brought to a close 23 years of bloody war, which devastated Europe from Spain to Russia, when a British and allied army commanded by Arthur Wellesley, Duke of Wellington defeated the French Emperor, Napoleon Bonaparte.

To mark 200 years since the Battle of Waterloo, the Wordsworth Trust is staging the first-ever exhibition to present William Wordsworth and other writers of the Romantic period as ‘war poets’.

Wordsworth Trust curator, Jeff Cowton MBE said, “For me the exhibition captures the essence of Wordsworth as a young man, standing up for the poor, as well as the older Wordsworth becoming anti Napoleon. His poetry speaks for the dispossessed and for the rights of freedom against an evil Emperor. This is a far cry from ‘I wandered lonely as a cloud’.”

Wordsworth, War & Waterloo will display hand-written manuscripts of William Wordsworth’s war poetry alongside stunning pictures, satirical cartoons and fascinating physical objects from the conflict which pitted Britain and her allies against France. These include a cannon from Nelson’s flagship, cannonballs from the battle of Salamanca and a gruesome collection of teeth, taken from the dead on the battlefields of the Napoleonic Wars.

Visitors will discover how the dramatic events of the war changed the lives of people across Britain, including women and children. With a particular focus on artistic and literary responses to the conflict, Wordsworth, War & Waterloo will demonstrate how war shaped Wordsworth’s ideas about his own role as a poet and how he felt towards the major military and naval figures of the period – Admiral Horatio Nelson, the Duke of Wellington, and, in particular, Napoleon Bonaparte.

It will tell the story of the poet’s changing responses to the war that began in 1793 and culminated with Wellington’s victory over Napoleon at Waterloo in June 1815. From being a supporter of the French model, Wordsworth became a vehement critic of Napoleon, writing, “My soul was with those who were resolved to fight it out with Bonaparte.”

Years after the battle, Wordsworth visited Waterloo and was moved by the “. . . horror breathing from the silent ground.”

The exhibition will be richly illustrated with a number of important paintings, drawings and cartoons from the period, bringing together Benjamin Robert Haydon’s portraits of Wordsworth, Wellington and Napoleon for the first time outside London. It will also feature a range of cartoons by the brilliant caricaturist James Gillray, and will display J. M. W. Turner’s sketchbook from his visit to the site of the battle.

This exhibition has interest and appeal for all ages, with features to attract a broad audience and family activities integral to the experience. The family engagement team have created a character called ‘Billy Bull’, son of John. He helps families to find the most appropriate items on display and prompts them to participate in activities.

Suitable for

  • Any age
  • Family friendly


Adult - £7.75
Student - £6.75
Child - £4.50
Family - £17.20
Discounted rates available for groups of 10 people or more.

To book, please call 015394 35544 or email


Resources listed here may include websites, bookable tours and workshops, books, loan boxes and more. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all.

Introducing Wordsworth

Classic poems for literary teaching a Key stage 2. Teacher’s pack of material for use in the classroom.


  • Martin, Nancy


  • Wordsworth Trust

How to obtain

Contact Nancy Martin - email:, phone: 015394 35544.

Getting there

The car park for Dove Cottage & The Wordsworth Museum are located on the A591, the main Kendal–Keswick road through the central Lake District. Look for the big blue sign just south of the Grasmere mini-roundabout.

Dove Cottage & The Wordsworth Museum
Dove Cottage
Town End
LA22 9SH




015394 35544

All information is drawn from or provided by the venues themselves and every effort is made to ensure it is correct. Please remember to double check opening hours with the venue concerned before making a special visit.