Welcome to John Clare Cottage

Tucked away between Stamford and Peterborough lies the village of Helpston, the home of John Clare (1793-1864). Widely regarded as one of the greatest of the English poets, John Clare lived in the village for his first forty years from 1793 until 1832.

The John Clare Trust purchased John Clare Cottage in 2005, preserving it for future generations. The Cottage has been restored, using traditional building methods, to create a centre where people can learn about John Clare, his works, how rural people lived in the early 19th century and also gain an understanding of the environment.

The Cottage contains examples of his work together with information about his life. Some of the rooms have been returned to the style that would have been found in cottages in the early 19th century in rural England. The gardens have been redesigned and planted with varieties which would have been seen in Clare’s time.

The Cottage shop is the perfect place to buy a memento of your visit - we specialise in John Clare books and local art and craft items. Why not relax in our lovely cafe and try one of our homemade soups, daily specials, or one of our selection of Clare's cakes. 

All cakes and light bites on our menu are made on the premises.

Variations in Visiting Arrangements

John Clare Cottage is used for many events and educational visits, you are advised to check when planning your visit to the Cottage to ensure that it is open to the public and there are no large groups which would detract from your visit. Details of advanced bookings can be found here >>>> 

Special Notice for Visitors

The John Clare Trust now owns the Exeter Arms public house in Church Lane, behind the Church. You are advised to park here rather than in Woodgate. This is a five minute walk away from the Cottage.

 

 

LATEST COTTAGE NEWS
Pennyless

We are pleased  to stock the latest CD from the local folk group Pennyless - In The Park.
 
Details

Acoustic Cafe

Come along to the Cottage with your instruments on Thursday July 28th,  - full details

 

 

Please Support the Trust

The John Clare Trust is an independent charity . Please support us to help maintain the facilities and develop educational programs.


 

From Walks in the Woods

 

Oh, I do love to force a way
Through woods where lone the woodman goes,
Through all the matted shades to stray,
The brambles tearing at my clothes;
And it may tear; I love the noise
And hug the solitary joys.
 

The woodman, he from top to toe
In leathern doublet brushes on;
He cares not where his rambles go,
Thorns, briers, he beats them every one;
Their utmost spite his armour foils;
Unhurt, he dares his daily toils.
 

Knee-deep in fern he daily stoops
And loud his bill or hatchet chops,
As snug he trims the faggot up
Or gaps in mossy hedges stops;
While echo chops as he hath done
As if she counted every one.