Renée Zellweger as Beatrix Potter copyright Momentum Pictures

Beatrix Potter, Peter Rabbit and The Lake District

Beatrix Potter 1866 - 1943

Beatrix Potter is best known for her beautifully illustrated children's books of Peter Rabbit, Jemima Puddle-Duck and friends. She spent many childhood holidays in the Lake District and these influenced her work. Squirrel Nutkin sailed on Derwentwater and Hawkshead was the setting for The Tale of Johnny Townmouse.

Herdwick heroine

Beatrix Potter was a key figure in saving the traditional Herdwick sheep from extinction. With the profits from her publications, she bought Hill Top farm, other hill farms and estates in the Lake District. She became an expert Herdwick sheep breeder and the first female president designate of the Herdwick Sheepbreeders' Association. When she died in 1943 she left 14 farms, sheep and 4000 acres of land to the National Trust.

Beatrix and Brockhole

To follow in the real-life Potter's footsteps, take a trip to Brockhole - The Lake District Visitor Centre. This was the home of Beatrix's cousin Edith who married merchant William Gaddum.

Descendent Anthony Gaddum says the author used to write to her young second cousins Jim and Molly at Brockhole. He has even seen a letter to Molly based on Jeremy Fisher, complete with illustrations.

"I understand Beatrix was very close to the children. Although the National Trust were the main beneficiaries in her will, Jim and Molly were her heirs," said Mr Gaddum.

Beatrix Potter trail

Meet Beatrix Potter's characters on our new Beatrix Potter trail around Brockhole's beautiful lakeshore grounds and learn more about the wildlife that inspired her. Our amazing grounds are home to many of the creatures who appear in Beatrix Potter's tales - we even share our name with Mr Brock the badger.

Beatrix Potter Attraction

The World of Beatrix Potter attraction in Bowness-on-Windermere is an incredibly popular attraction for children and adult alike. Travel back to your childhood and enter the world of Peter Rabbit, Jemima Puddle-Duck and more.

The Beatrix Potter attraction is open throughout the year and offers different shows and themed days throughout the year, so make sure you get the right day and book in advance for specific events.

The facilities are accessible for all, with lifts available for different areas. Please bear in mind that the location is in the centre of Bowness-on-Windermere, which can cause challenges for some, but parking is available for those with mobility issues.

Peter Rabbit - the film

Peter Rabbit has hopped on to the big screen in 2018, with an A-list cast bringing the classic Beatrix Potter tale to life. This latest adaption of the family-favourite is a mix of live action and animation, and stars a stellar cast led by James Corden as Peter Rabbit himself.

In 2017 film crews set the cameras rolling in the Lake District to capture the setting that inspired Beatrix Potter’s much-loved tale and renowned locations in Windermere and Ambleside can be spotted in the film.

Credit: Columbia Pictures, Sony

Miss Potter - the film

The film "Miss Potter" starring Oscar winner Renée Zellweger and Ewan McGregor included locations in the Lake District.

Renee Zellwegger as Beatrix Potter by lakeside copyright Momentum Pictures

Renée Zellweger as Beatrix Potter standing on the jetty at Fawe Park in Portinscale by Derwentwater copyright Momentum Pictures

Filming locations

Filming for "Miss Potter" took place in London, the Isle of Man and the Lake District at Loughrigg Terrace and Loughrigg Tarn, Grasmere and Yew Tree Farm, Coniston.

Lake District National Park Volunteers helped by marshalling rights of way, encouraging people to take an alternative route or to wait whilst filming took place. Filming during the Easter holidays in some very popular locations made for a busy time.

"The days were interesting and unpredictable, what with planes going overhead at the wrong time, paparazzi hiding in the trees in camouflage gear, trying to clear the fell side of people and ducking behind walls and trees to keep out of shot," said ranger Steve Gaskell who helped organise the mammoth marshalling task.

"Both the National Trust and the film company were very appreciative of the volunteers, and were impressed by their ability to talk to the public and help out", added Steve.

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Cottage near Coniston - copyright Charlie Hedley

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