Online Tour of Elizabeth Gaskell’s House

Carmel Smickersgill, Tours & Activities Editor

8 April 2021 Tickets from £4 — Book now

Elizabeth Gaskell is one of Manchester’s literary icons. She wrote the seminal works North and South and Cranford, whilst living a five minute walk from the University of Manchester. Her home has been kept in all its mid nineteenth century glory, with the original servants quarters and transitioning decor. Usually you can attend a physical tour of both Elizabeth Gaskell’s house and the Pankhurst Centre, but until we can once again gather indoors, the house has put together a fascinating online tour to satisfy your curiosity.

Expert guides have compiled their collective knowledge to bring Manchester’s literary heritage alive. With the help of 360° photography you can now journey through the rooms of the house as if you were there.

tales of the tempestuous relationship between Elizabeth and her publisher Charles Dickens

Elizabeth’s family life can tell us a lot about the day to day goings on in a well off Victorian household in Manchester. Living in a city which was in the full throws of the industrial revolution, inspired her to write the novels which made her famous throughout the world. Her literary pursuits were possible because of her supportive husband William. This tour gives you an insight into how the family worked, lived and negotiated the hierarchy within the household staff. You may notice the stark contrast between the lavish and colourful Drawing and Dining Rooms and the comparatively simple servants quarters. It serves as a clear illustration of the inequality in Victorian Manchester.

As you make your way through each room, you’ll discover stories of some of the famous guests who stayed at the house. Another literary heavyweight of the time, Charlotte Bronte, was reported to have stayed with Elizabeth Gaskell and lived up to her notoriously shy character. There will also be tales of the tempestuous relationship between Elizabeth and her publisher Charles Dickens.

The online tour lasts one hour and is limited to 20 people so as to allow time for questions. To find out about more online events from Elizabeth Gaskell’s house check out their website.

8 April 2021 Tickets from £4 Book now

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