Head to Elizabeth Gaskell’s House this April for some special family craft activities inspired by Victorian cards and Easter bonnets.
Visit the house and, while you have a wander and see some of the newly renovated rooms, let the kids get stuck in making their own mini masterpiece in the Servants’ Hall. There’s craft and colouring to enjoy, as well as the popular Cranford The Cat trail around the house – all included in the admission price. If the weather permits, you can even enjoy a picnic in the lovely garden, surrounded by flowers; if conditions prove inclement, the tea room will serve you fresh brews and homemade treats.
Activities are available 11am to 4.30pm on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Sundays 2 to 16 April (excluding Sunday 9 April, when the secondhand book sale takes place in the Servant’s Hall) included in admission. Entry is £7 for adults and free for children under 16, when accompanied by an adult. Tickets can be pre-booked up to a month in advance.
If the weather permits, you can even enjoy a picnic in the lovely garden, surrounded by flowers; if conditions prove inclement, the tea room will serve you fresh brews and homemade treats.
For more Easter card action – plus Christmas, birthday, New Year, memorial, reward and Valentine’s – arrange a time to view the Laura Seddon Collection up the road at the Manchester Metropolitan University Special Collections Museum, in the Reading Room at Man Met’s All Saints Library.
The Laura Seddon Collection of Victorian and Edwardian greetings cards – donated to the university in 1992 – is one of the largest and most comprehensive sources for the study of 19th-century greetings cards, with over 32,500 examples, ranging in date from the 1840s to the 1920s, with the majority from the 1880s-1890s; the “Golden Age” of the greetings card. Some are very rare, some represent the earliest examples of commercial cards (including Britain’s first commercially produced Christmas card), and some were created by renowned 19th-century artists and illustrators including Walter Crane, Kate Greenaway and Beatrix Potter. Don’t forget to check out Manchester Poetry Library while you’re there.