Blogs & News

blog : Exploring John Ruskin’s Brantwood

Ruskin was one of the most remarkable men, not only of England and our time, but of all countries and all times. He was one of those rare men who think with their hearts, and so he thought and said not only what he himself had seen and felt, but what everyone will think and say in the future. This is Leo Tolstoy describing, what was for him, the legacy of John Ruskin. 2019 marks the bicentenary of...

blog : A Tradition of Poetry

Read on for poems from the writers from the creative writing programme currently running at the House. For more of their work and to read about the background to these workshops, click here. Elizabeth Gaskell herself wrote poetry - one of her earliest published works was a poem she'd written with her husband, William  called ' Sketches among the Poor, No 1' which was published in Blackwoods' Edinburgh Magazine in January 1837. And please note, Olive and Ben's...

blog : Celebrating Primroses

April 19 is Primrose Day, and marks the anniversary of the death of Benjamin Disraeli, twice Prime Minister of England and also a prolific novelist who said that when he wanted to read a novel, he wrote one! The primrose was his favourite flower: he liked them 'so much better for for their being wild: they seem an offering from the fauns and dryads of the woods.' Queen Victoria would send him bunches of primroses from Windsor and...

blog : Visiting Manchester Cathedral

To celebrate English Tourism Week 2019, Visit Manchester organised a culture swap across Manchester's heritage venues. We were lucky enough to visit the Grade 1 listed Manchester Cathedral where Amos Millington, one of the Cathedral volunteers, gave us a most interesting tour of the building. There has been a church on the site since before 1086. The Domesday Book that year records that Manchester had a church dedicated to St Mary the Blessed Virgin , probably  slightly to...

blog : My family, the Dukinfield Darbishires

Sascha Roos, a member of the Dukinfield Darbishire family - who were great friends of the Gaskells - visited the House recently and has written this fascinating blog about her family connections with the Gaskells... About my family, the Dukinfield Darbishires, or The D.D.s', as Elizabeth Gaskell affectionately called them... Recently I had a delightful second visit to Elizabeth Gaskell's House in Plymouth Grove, with the added excitement that my great great great grandparents were regular visitors to...