Cumbria LA22 9PZ
Grasmere is one of the most popular of the southern lakes in the spectacular Lake District region of north-west England. Visitors are drawn to the lake and village not only because of its beauty but because it was the much loved home of ‘Lake Poet’ William Wordsworth.
The lake is quite small, only 1680 yards (1540 metres) long and 700 yards (640 metres) wide. It is enclosed by spectacular crags and high fells, ideal for walking. Private non-motorised boats are allowed on the lake and rowing boats are available for hire (March-early November) from in front of the refreshment kiosk on the south west shore. There are no ferry services.
The River Rothay flows through the attractive little village before entering the northern end of the lake. This same river connects Grasmere Lake with Rydal Water before continuing on to flow into Lake Winermere.
Over a period of 14 years the Wordsworths occupied several properties in Grasmere before finally settling in Rydal Mount, halfway between Ambleside and Grasmere. The first house William and his sister, Dorothy leased was Dove Cottage on the outskirts of the village of Grasmere. When William married his childhood friend Mary Hutchinson, they all lived in the cottage until his growing family forced them to move to a larger house.
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The Loveliest Spot that Man hath Ever Found
Wordsworth described Grasmere as “the loveliest spot that man hath ever found". The village is steeped in places where Wordsworth and his famous literary and artist friends lived and visited - inevitably, quite an industry has grown up around this famous man. He and his family are buried in the churchyard of St Oswald's Church, Grasmere.
Recently the neglected bit of land between the church and the river has been renovated and turned into a place of peace called the Wordsworth Daffodil Garden. Here Wordsworth devotees can own a share, and have an engraved stone set in the path. Our self-guided tour In Wordsworth’s Footsteps on this website identifies some places in the Lake District associated with the poet.
It is unusual for such a small village to have its own Art Gallery but The Heaton Cooper Studio is composed of three galleries exhibiting the work of the Heaton Cooper family of artists. On permanent display are superb watercolours, prints and sculpture by these local artists. Opening hours are 09:00 - 17:30, Monday to Sunday. For more information Web: Heaton Cooper Studio
Although the majority of the village is made up of 19th and 20th century buildings the farms around Grasmere are much older. Just across the road from the church is Church Stile, a row of 17th century cottages, which is owned by the National Trust. The church itself is 13th century and of a most unusual design. It is well worth visiting.
Fell Walking & Lake Shore Strolls
Visitors also come to Grasmere to enjoy invigorating walks over the fells or gentle strolls along the lake shore, and to sample Sally Nelson’s famous Grasmere Gingerbread baked in a tiny building near the church.
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The village is also home to two quaint traditional customs – the Grasmere Rushbearing Ceremony held in July and the Grasmere Sports held in August. For visitors unable to attend the actual Rushbearing Festival there is a painting of what they have missed hanging in the Grasmere Village Hall!
In the village there are plenty of gift shops as well as places to eat and stay. The visitor will have no trouble finding something to interest and occupy them.
- By Car
Where to park?
The Village can get jam-packed in summer but there are a handful of car parks including Broadgate Meadow and Stock Lane. There is also some limited time on-street car parking.
Google Maps - Grasmere