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Beatrix Potter The Lake District Visitor Experience

Aug 17, 2007
Beatrix Potter was born in 1866 in Kensington, London. Her early childhood was spent in isolation with her pets for company. These included two pet rabbits that were to become immortalised in her books. Benjamin and Peter are the subjects of her much loved children's books.

Her summers were spent in the Lake District, a place that has become synonymous with her name. She always displayed a great interest in nature and conservation but was discouraged from furthering her intellectual pursuits by her parents and the restrictions on women in Victorian times. Until she was thirty she was a housekeeper to her parents.

It wasn't until she was thirty six that her first book was published - 'The Tale of Peter Rabbit'. She became secretly engaged to her publisher much against her parent's wishes. He was considered to be 'beneath her station' being a working man. The romance was to end in tragedy with his death and Beatrix rift with her parents.

By this time her books were selling well and she was a woman of independent means. She purchased 'Hill Top' farm in Sawrey, Cumbria and retreated there as often as she could. She later married her advisor and solicitor at the age of forty-seven and the couple moved into the farm permanently.

She used the royalties from her successful books and inheritance from her now deceased parents to purchase more land and became more involved with farming and conservation.

Later in life she moved with her husband to 'Castle Cottage' where she died at the ripe old age of eighty one. Having had no children, she left all her land to the National Trust thus ensuring that the beautiful landscape and traditional farming methods would remain unspoilt.

This landscape can still be enjoyed today by visitors to the area. The life and works of Beatrix Potter can be experienced through visits to her well preserved home and museum and gallery devoted to her.

Hill Top Farm
Set in beautiful surroundings of Sawrey in Ambleside, this is the place where Beatrix Potter wrote many of her famous children's stories. The house was built in the seventeenth century and is small; hence visitors are restricted to a timed system to avoid overcrowding and to protect the fragile artefacts. This is an extremely popular attraction particularly during school holidays. There is a shop on site which specialises in Beatrix Potter gifts.

The Beatrix Potter Gallery
The Beatrix Potter Gallery is a seventeenth century Lakeland townhouse set on the main street in Hawkshead, Cumbria. Here you will find a fascinating exhibition about the life of Beatrix Potter. On show are the original story book illustrations. Occasional story readings for families in this atmospheric setting complete the magical experience.

The Beatrix Potter Attraction
This attraction is a must see for children of all ages. There are lots to see and do. Peter Rabbit, Jemima Puddleduck, Mr McGregor's Greenhouse and much more, are all here for you to meet. Lots of fun for the kids. For the adults there is an amazing traditional tea room where you can get a welcome cup of tea and a bite to eat. Browse around the shops for some collector's pieces.

The story of Beatrix Potter is a fascinating one. Her popularity has never faded. The release of Hollywood film 'Miss Potter' starring Renee Zellwegger is sure to see an increase in her appeal. It is ironic that although she was considered to be grumpy and ill tempered by the local children, that she is one of the best loved children's authors of our time.
About the Author
Ann Coveney is a freelance writer and part time school teacher. She can be hired to write articles on a wide range of topics. The web site she uses the most for low cost travel and hotel booking is http://www.AskVicki.co.uk
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