An exhibition with Alison Critchlow, in collaboration with the University of Leeds’ ‘British Romantic Writing and Environmental Catastrophe’ project. 


This exhibition is open from 1st July - 28th August


‘A very dankish misty, wettish morning’

Dorothy Wordsworth’s Grasmere journal places daily weather in the spotlight.

The weather has a massive impact on our world and our perception of it. Her tiny notebooks bring her world alive; her curiosity and wonder fill the pages, and we are urged to open our eyes and ears, to sharpen our perception, to slow down and notice. 

In our latest exhibition, ‘Weather Words’, we invite visitors to take a fresh look at how every day weather effects our lives.  Alison Critchlow, a local artist, has interpreted Dorothy’s words, taking their rhythm and flow as a starting point. We are delighted to work with Alison on this project, and her insight and ideas have helped us to interpret and display some of our highlight manuscripts in a new light.

Alongside Alison’s two original artworks, visitors will have a special chance to see two of Dorothy’s journal notebooks side by side, both open to pages that have particularly inspired Alison in her work. Also on display is a wonderful manuscript of S.T. Coleridge, which features a handwritten draft of his poem ‘Ode to Rain’ in which he begs ‘Do go, dear Rain! do go away!’

This exhibition has been created as part of the University of Leeds ‘British Romantic Writing and Environmental Catastrophe’ project. Funded through an AHRC Leadership Fellowship awarded to Dr David Higgins, this project is the first major investigation of environmental catastrophe in Romantic-period writing. The resulting collaboration by Dr Higgins with Wordsworth Trust has been producing some profound and ambitious activities with schools from Kendal and Leeds and community groups the breadth of Cumbria. Since January, Wordsworth Trust learning and community outreach staff have commissioned writers, poets, artists and photographers and together have worked with new and existing groups and schools to reflect on how climate change is affecting their lives. As a result, two further displays featuring their artwork and responses will be open on site during July and August.

We’ll be celebrating these three exhibitions and the project itself, and of course the great British Weather, on Saturday 15 July at our ‘St Swithin’s day if thou dost rain’ event. Come along to hear more about this fantastic project! Find out more here.

Find out more information about the project,

You can see more of Alison’s work on her website


(Community Outreach exhibition open Saturday 15 July – Sunday 30 July, Community Gallery)

(Schools exhibition open Tuesday 4 July – Monday 28 August, Foyle Room)