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Wordsworth's family home from 1813 to his death in 1850
The house was formerly a Tudor cottage, and the older parts such as the dining room retains its original flagged floor and oak beams. The drawing room and library date from 1750, when the house was enlarged. Also on view are the family bedrooms and Wordsworth's attic study which he used when he was Poet Laureate.
The house is still in ownership of the Wordsworth family, and contains portraits, personal possessions and first editions of the poet's work. To step through the door is to step back in time to the early Victorian period, and it is not difficult to imagine the poet and his family leading their everyday lives here.
There are four acres of gardens, which are retained in the style laid out by Wordsworth. He was a passionate gardener, and created the current network of paths, terraces, and even the rock pools. There are rare shrubs and, in season, the daffodils, bluebells and rhododendrons produce a spectacular display of colour. At the lower end of the garden is a terraced path leading to a seat which has a stunning view towards Rydal Water.
The tea shop
Most attraction tea shops are either modern buildings constructed at the side, or they utilise some part of the property which has little historical value. Not so at Rydal Mount, where the tea shop and small souvenir shop are situated in what was originally the saddlery over the coach house. Wordsworth converted this area into a schoolroom for his daughter Dora. His sister Dorothy was Dora's tutor. Now, having been restored in a sympathetic manner to include a small souvenir shop, the Tea room retains much of the building's original character.