Uncover George Eliot country

“Unconventional”, “unorthodox”, descriptions of one of the leading nineteenth century authors Mary Ann Evans, known as George Eliot and born in Nuneaton; drawing on her early life here in rural Warwickshire her themes and characters are just as relevant today as then.

Many of the places important in Mary Ann’s life and inspiring scenes in her novels such as Middlemarch, Mill on the Floss and Scenes of Clerical Life can still be visited.

The George Eliot Fellowship hosts an annual tour and George Eliot Day, usually in May which offers exclusive access to her homes with expert guides.

2019 will be the bi-centenary of her birth with many events planned so keep an eye on our events calendar. Visit the George Eliot Fellowship website to learn more about:  “the most famous, most intelligent, most widely read, and after the Queen, the richest woman in Britain”.

Whenever you visit us here are some of our top tips to uncover George Eliot country:

The Arbury Hall estate is the birthplace of Mary Ann who was the daughter of the estate’s land agent, Robert Evans. This beautiful historic house is open at bank holidays and to groups by appointment. Mary Ann spent hours in the library reading to excite her strong intellect.

For many years Mary Ann lived at Griff House now a welcoming restaurant and hotel making this an ideal base for a George Eliot break.

Nuneaton was re-cast as “Milby” in her early works and St Nicholas church as Milby church

“Shepperton” church from the Tales of Amos Barton is actually All Saints Church Chilvers Coton. This is where Mary Ann was baptised and her father and family members are buried.

Astley Castle has been stunningly restored by the Landmark Trust to make a luxurious holiday rental; Mary Ann visited the castle regularly with her father and re-imagined it as “Knebley Abbey” with “Knebley church” alongside actually Astley Church where her parents married.

St Mary the Virgin, Astley church is where her parents married and later was described as “Knebley Church” in Scenes of Clerical Life. Astley’s vicar was also the inspiration for the character the Reverend Gilfil.

Things To Do

10 free things to do in Northern Warwickshire

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Northern Warwickshire’s Cycling Country

Warwickshire is proud to have hosted a stage in the Ovo Women’s Cycle Tour for 3 years in a row – we certainly have some fine cycling country whatever your level of cycling proficiency. If you like to potter around away from traffic our country parks are ideal. Try...

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Historic days out in Northern Warwickshire

Henry Tudor’s restover before the Battle of Bosworth, an important Roman fort town & Boudica’s last stand, the Elizabethan centre of literary activity, the Sir Robert Peel Museum and George Eliot’s inspiration are just some of the historical places of importance that you visit in North Warwickshire.

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Family days out in Northern Warwickshire

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Sporty trips in Northern Warwickshire

Road racers or easy trails? Tee off at the Belfry? Wakeboarding, waterskiing or open water swimming? Or a take a stroll that’ll give you insights into fascinating local history. North Warwickshire can cater for all tastes.

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10 ideas for a rainy day

Let’s face it, England is famous for rainy days so we have it covered. 1 Have fun inside at the swimming pools in – Atherstone Leisure Complex, Pingles Nuneaton or Lea Marston hotel 2 Nuneaton’s Art Gallery & Museum showcases fine art, local history and galleries on...

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