An educational trip to the Lake District will be a wonderful experience for students of all ages, especially if you take the time to introduce them to the memory of one of its most influential characters: children’s writer Beatrix Potter. |
More than just drawing inspiration from the wonderful landscape and wildlife of the Lake District, Potter became one of its earliest protectors and is an important figure in both literature and local conservation.
Beatrix Potter and the Lake District
The author is most famous for her numerous children’s books featuring much-loved characters including Peter Rabbit (a film version of which is currently in cinemas), Jemima Puddle-Duck and Mrs Tiggy-Winkle. An educational trip, however, is the perfect opportunity to tell your class about the work she did in protecting the way of life she loved in the Lake District and highlighting the importance of conservation.
Despite being born in London, Potter had an abiding connection with the Lake District having holidayed there throughout her childhood. In 1903 she bought a field in the area (with the proceeds from the sales of Peter Rabbit) and in 1905 she moved to Hill Top Farm, Near Sawrey. A lifelong friend of Canon Hardwicke Drummond Rawnsley (one of the founders of the National Trust), she was passionate about preserving the traditional way of rural life in the district. Over her lifetime she bought more than 4,000 acres of land and 14 farms which she donated to the National Trust when she died. The farms still exist today and are managed by tenant farmers on behalf of the Trust, in accordance with the author’s wishes.
Visit The World of Beatrix Potter
There is no better way to bring the characters and world of Beatrix Potter’s books off the page for your class than with a visit to the interactive museum dedicated to her works in Bowness-on-Winderemere. From a reconstruction of Peter Rabbit’s Garden to a visit to Mrs Tiggy-Winkle’s Kitchen (where pupils can have their photos taken with the busy washerwoman herself), to a virtual walk through the countryside which inspired the stories, the museum brings these wonderful books to life.
Take a Trip to Hill Top
Hill Top Farm, the inspiration for much of the writer’s work, is where she wrote many of her books. Students will not only see where Potter lived and worked but will be able to explore the surrounding land, much of which features in her stories. From the garden in which Tom Kitten played, to the rhubarb patch in which Jemima Puddle-Duck laid her egg, your class will love identifying these familiar sights on an educational trip.
Walking in the footsteps of such a well-known author (and following the tiny paw prints of many of her much-loved characters) makes an educational trip to the Lake District come to life for many students. Make sure you make the very best out of your time here by contacting a specialist educational tour operator who will be able to organise specially-themed excursions which will help to bring Beatrix Potter’s world alive for your pupils.
John Gardiner is the Managing Director of The School Travel Company, a tour operator specialising in educational trip itineraries for school and youth groups to the UK, Europe and beyond. As a father and avid traveller, John is very passionate about providing students with valuable and engaging learning experiences outside of the classroom. By sharing his expert advice with teachers, he allows them to inspire their students and bring their studies to life.
Related Articles -