Chawton House was owned by Jane Austen’s brother Edward, and known to her as ‘the Great House’.
Jane lived in a cottage on his estate and would stroll up to ‘dawdle away’ many an hour in the grand Elizabethan manor and its picturesque gardens.
Visitors can saunter through the grounds, see Austen heirlooms, such as the dining table at which Jane would have enjoyed family meals, and explore the extensive collection of early women’s writing. From novelists and travel writers to philosophers and activists, the library holds first and early editions, original manuscripts, and paintings and is accessible to anyone who wishes to use it.
The library, house and gardens are open to visitors 7 days a week – from March through to December – as well as groups and educational visitors when closed. There is a varied programme of events, from house and garden tours, study days and symposiums, to family days.
Whether you are inspired by women’s literature, keen to follow in Austen’s footsteps and explore the beautiful gardens or simply to enjoy lunch or a slice of cake in the Old Kitchen Tearoom, the friendly staff and volunteers will make you feel at home.
|Open (2 Mar 2020 - 30 Dec 2020)|
|Monday - Sunday||11:00||- 16:00|
* Last entry is half and hour before closing.
Old Kitchen Tearoom: Open all year, 9am-4pm Mon-Fri and 11am-4pm Weekends and Bank Holidays.
Map & Directions
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From M25 Junction 10, A3 Guildford bypass, A31 Farnham & Alton bypass. Turn off left at A31/32 junction roundabout to Chawton and follow the brown tourist signs. From M25 Junction 12, M3 to Junction 5, B3349 to Odiham and Alton, follow signs for Chawton.
There is a limited amount of parking available at the house for cars and small minibuses. Please be aware that it is not possible to accommodate large coaches as the drive to the house is unsuitable for such vehicles. Groups can be dropped off in the lane at the top of the drive to Chawton House and a coach can be parked at the top of the drive in front of the barrier.
There is also coach parking in the nearby town of Alton.
Public Transport Directions
By Train: From London Waterloo, there are hourly trains to Alton. There is a taxi rank outside of the train station.
By Bus: The number 64 Stagecoach service runs daily between Alton train station and Winchester, stopping at the A31/32 junction roundabout near Chawton. The number 38 service from Petersfield to Alton offers a less frequent alternative option, stopping in Chawton.
On the 1st Sunday of each month between May and October inclusively the Medstead Depot Omnibus Group run a free bus service between Alton station and Chawton, stopping outside Jane Austen’s House Museum. These vintage buses are part of the Working Omnibus Museum Project charity. The service is funded by the owners of the buses and is open to anyone wishing to travel without any need for a rail ticket or any other form of payment.