Jane Austen moved to Southampton in 1806 and lived here until 1809. The garden of her house backed on to the impressive, well preserved medieval town walls and, although the house no longer stands, the location can be visited at the level where the garden would have been. The Dolphin Hotel - a coaching inn in Jane's time - where Jane attended Winter Balls, still stands in the High Street. Buildings that Jane would have known can be seen, including the Bargate - the magnificent medieval northern entrance to the Old Town that Jane would have passed through when leaving or entering the town. Other sites, such as that of All Saints Church (destroyed during the Second World War), where Jane and her family worshipped are also visited and contextualised in light of Jane’s own writings, whilst living in the town.
Jane herself wrote many letters whilst living here, some of which have survived. A later memoir by a descendant gives us some idea of her ‘Southampton experience’ and of the people she lived among and the places she visited. These are, of course, interlaced in your Tour Guide’s commentary at appropriate places and intervals.
If you’ve any questions or you would like more information, please take a look at our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs). Then if you decide to book a ‘Jane Austen’s Southampton’ walk please complete our on-line Provisional Booking Form and we’ll get things moving for you.