Beatrix Potter 150th anniversary celebrations
Beatrix Potter was born in London in 1866, but later lived solely in the Lake District. She had a lonely childhood, educated at home and barely had any contact with people other than her family.
Potter loved animals from an early age and had various pets that she made drawings of. Her parents rented Wray Castle nearAmbleside and this is where Potter fell in love with the Lake District.
As an adult, she lived most of her life in the Lake District, which inspired her to write her books, in particular The Tale of Peter Rabbit.
She also painted and sketched the Lake District’s landscapes. After her death in 1943, she left her 14 farms and 4000 acres of land to the National Trust, on the proviso that her favourite home, Hill Top at Sawrey, was opened to the public and left unchanged.
Beatrix Potter had a huge influence on the development of the conservation movement, choosing to live and work in the Lake District, adopting it as her spiritual home and writing & illustrating that rural community. Her first book, ‘The Tale of Peter Rabbit’ has sold over 40 million copies since its publication in 1902.
“Beatrix Potter, her characters and stories are synonymous with the Lakes,” said Mike Innerdale, Lake District Assistant Director Operations.
“But more than that –we plan to tell her story – her role in the conservation movement; her life as a business woman in a ‘man’s world’, buying up farms and land; sheep farming with herdwicks; and eventually leaving them all – 15 farms and 4000 acres of land to the Trust in her will, one of our largest and most important legacies in the Lake District. This was the forerunner for the Trust’s ownership and care of land in the Lakes. ”