Record-Breaking Student Cohort Visits Chawton House
Over 120 Year 10 Newton Abbot College students visited Jane Austen’s Hampshire home in the village of Chawton as part of their GCSE studies of one of Jane Austen’s most renowned works, Pride and Prejudice, on 25 and 26 February.
Over the course of the day, students visited both Chawton House Library (the manor house owned by Jane Austen’s brother, Edward) and the cottage home where Jane Austen lived and wrote her major works (now Jane Austen’s House Museum) and were submerged into the life, culture and writings of the late 18th and early 19th century.
The visit included a tour of Chawton House Library and the opportunity to view texts of the period and some of the writings alluded to in the book Pride and Prejudice. Students had a chance to show off their regency ballroom dancing skills as they donned period costumes and took to the dance floor. At Jane Austen’s House Museum students got the opportunity to handle artefacts from the period, have a tour of the house and watch an insightful video about the life of Jane Austen, giving them a unique insight into what life was like in the 19th century.
Trip organiser and Teacher of English, Hannah Le Couilliard, said of the visit “We thoroughly enjoyed our visit to the ‘Chawton House Library’ and to the ‘Jane Austen’s House Museum.’ Our aim was to ensure that students would understand the context of the novel and that they would be able to appreciate what life was like in the period in which ‘Pride and Prejudice’ was written and set. After our visit we can resolutely say that we achieved this aim. We were very grateful for all the effort put in by the experts at both the library and the museum as they had clearly tailored the trip to meet our requirements. The trip proved to be incredibly worthwhile and we hope to repeat it with our next year 10 cohort.”
Year 10 student, Joshua Hood, thoroughly enjoyed his time in Chawton “I appreciated learning about the historical artefacts on display throughout the house and museum. Both venues were authentically preserved and it gave me some much needed cultural context, to take my knowledge of the text to a deeper level of understanding."