Blackwell: the Arts & Crafts House

Blackwell offers a  snapshot of early 20th-century living.

Designed by architect Mackay Hugh Baillie Scott, this Grade I listed building is one of the UK’s finest examples of Arts & Crafts architecture, and is a practice that is inspired by the natural world, while embracing traditional craft skills.

Blackwell retains many of its original decorative features. During the late 19th century there was a resurgence of interest in hand-made crafts, encouraged by such figures as William Morris and John Ruskin. In a reaction to the mass produced and impersonal designs available at the time, artists, designers and makers drew inspiration from the skilled makers of the past. They reinvigorated traditional techniques and processes of making and placed an emphasis on quality and natural beauty.

Throughout the house the architect, Baillie Scott, has incorporated a wide variety of crafts. These include tiles in the fireplaces, carved stone and wood paneling, stained glass, mosaic floors, wrought iron and lead work, hessian wall hangings and the beautiful plaster work of the White Drawing Room. Each of these details are carefully woven into the fabric of the historic building rather than being ‘applied’ simply as decoration.

The rooms also contain furniture and objects by many of the leading Arts and Crafts designers and studios. These include metalwork by Willian Arthur Smith Benson, ceramics by Pilkingtons and Ruskin Pottery and furniture by Morris & Co., Stanley Webb Davies, Ernest Gimson and Baillie Scott himself.

The House also offers permanent and temporary exhibitions throughout the year.  Please see the What’s On page.

Further information
  • Opening times: April – October 10.00 am – 5.00 pm daily; November – March 10.00 am – 4.00 pm
  • Annual Pass – Adults: £12.00; Students: £9.00; Children: £6.00 (5-15 – under 4 Free
  • Location Blackwell, The Arts & Crafts House, Bowness-on-Windermere, Cumbria LA23 3J
  • Getting there by car From the south: Exit the M6 at junction 36 and follow signs for the South Lakes and Windermere. At the roundabout take the first left following signs for Crook and Bowness-on-Windermere on the B5284. After 6 miles arrive at a T-junction, turn left on to the A5074 (Lyth Valley Road). Turn right where the road forks onto the B5360.  Follow the drive to Blackwell’s car park. From the north: Exit the M6 at junction 40 and follow signs for Keswick (A66) and Windermere (A591) via Grasmere and Ambleside. Once in Windermere follow signs for Bowness-on-Windermere. Once in Bowness-on-Windermere follow the road to Blackwell which is situated just off the A5074 (Lyth Valley Road) and turn right where the road forks onto the B5360. Follow the drive to Blackwell’s car park. By train: Oxenholme is the nearest main-line railway station, a connecting train will bring you into Windermere (three miles from Blackwell). Buses run to Bowness-on-Windermere, 1½ miles north of Blackwell. Alternatively taxis are available from Windermere Station to Blackwell
  • For more information please call 015394 46139