Jane Austen’s House in Chawton, Hampshire is the picturesque country cottage where Jane Austen lived. It is the most treasured Austen site in the world. It was here that Jane’s genius flourished and where she wrote, revised and had published all her novels: Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice, Mansfield Park, Emma, Northanger Abbey and Persuasion.
Jane lived at what is now Jane Austen’s House for the last eight years of her life. She moved here in 1809 with her mother, sister Cassandra and friend Martha Lloyd after a period spent living in lodgings. The house was owned by Jane’s brother Edward, who had been named heir to the wealthy Knight family and had since inherited the Chawton Estate. The house – a 17th century building – was offered to the women rent-free for life.
In May 1817, after a period of ill health, Jane Austen left the village to seek medical treatment in Winchester. She died two months later on 18 July 1817. Jane’s mother and sister continued to live at the house for the rest of their lives. In 1845 the house was split into three dwellings to provide homes for staff on the Chawton estate and the building remained in this state until it was put up for sale in 1947.
After an appeal by the Jane Austen Society, the house was bought by Mr. T.E. Carpenter who turned it into a Museum dedicated to the life and works of Jane Austen, opening to the public in 1949.
Today, Jane Austen’s House is a Grade I listed building and one of the most important literary sites in the world, attracting tens of thousands of visitors each year. The Museum holds an important collection of objects associated with Jane Austen, including letters written by Jane and personal effects belonging to her and her family. Particular highlights include her jewellery, first editions of her books, furniture, textiles and the table at which she wrote her much loved novels.
Visitors to the House can freely explore Jane’s home and beautiful cottage garden whilst learning about her life through exhibitions and displays. Hands-on activities for all ages can be found alongside in-depth information panels and family objects, housed in the rooms that Jane would have known.
Once visitors have had their fill of the enchanting atmosphere, the Gift Shop with a large selection of souvenirs is well worth a browse. Schools and colleges are welcome too, with a dedicated Learning Officer ready to inspire and transport classes back to early 19th century Hampshire.
|Open February - May (1 Feb 2020 - 31 May 2020)|
|Monday - Sunday||10:30||- 16:30|
|Open June - August (1 June 2020 - 31 Aug 2020)|
|Monday - Sunday||10:00||- 17:00|
|Open September - December (1 Sept 2020 - 31 Dec 2020)|
|Monday - Sunday||10:30||- 16:30|
* Closed 24th - 26th December and throughout January. Reopening on 1st February. Please check website for opening times. Last entry time half an hour before closing.
Map & Directions
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Jane Austen's House Museum is located in the rural village of Chawton near the town of Alton in Hampshire. The historic city of Winchester is just over 15 miles to the south west of the village, and the market town of Farnham is 10 miles to the west.
Jane Austen's House Museum and the village of Chawton are just off the A31 at the A31/A32 roundabout near the town of Alton. Free parking is provided in the public car park opposite the Museum beyond the pub car park.
Public Transport Directions
By train: South Western Railway operate a regular service between London Waterloo and Alton, which is just 2 miles from the Museum. A taxi service can be found at the station in Alton for the onward journey.
By bus: It is now easier than ever to visit Jane Austen’s House Museum by public transport with an easy to follow walking guide from a nearby bus stop. The number 64 Stagecoach service runs daily between Alton train station and Winchester (Broadway), while the number 38 service from Petersfield to Alton offers a less frequent alternative option stopping directly outside the Museum in Chawton. Please always check the Stagecoach website before travelling.