Courtyard Restoration Appeal

The historic Courtyard Buildings at Jane Austen's House are in urgent need of restoration. We need your help to repair and restore their roofs, and to bring their lost histories back to life.

The Courtyard Buildings have always been a vital part of Jane Austen’s House. They are the engine room of the home, housing the Bakehouse, with its amazing brick bread oven and copper for heating water, deep cellars for storing food over the winter, offices, store rooms, and even the privy!

Now they are in urgent need of restoration and we need your help as we work to safeguard their future and bring their past to vivid life.

These buildings are a treasured part of the house, and together we can not just guarantee their future, but we can also share more of what it must have been like for Jane Austen and her family to live in this special home.

What do we need to do?

We need to completely strip and retile the roofs, as well as repairing underlying timberwork and repointing the chimneys. This will be the first stage of the project and must start from early spring 2024.

With your help, we will be able to make these buildings watertight, and structurally sound for many decades to come.

The next stage will be to restore the Bakehouse, and to start to develop a living history programme. Thanks to Martha Lloyd’s Household Book, we know the sort of food and drink that might have been made here, but we know much less about the lives of the people who worked in the Bakehouse, or of the washerwomen who came in to help the household.

How can you help?

By donating: all the information on how to donate in the best way for you is below.

By sharing the appeal: even if you can’t donate, but love the idea of the project, please share the appeal and our work at JAH

By sharing your knowledge: We need to carry out lots of research to deliver the living history part of the project, so if you are an expert on Georgian cooking or the lives of 18th/19thC domestic staff, please do get in touch!

The Bakehouse and Courtyard are always at the centre of our events. If you’d like to follow the progress of the project in more detail, or find out more about events, sign up to our newsletter.

How to donate:

One-off donations

Please donate to the Courtyard Restoration Appeal via our JustGiving portal

Monthly donations

You can now donate monthly to Jane Austen’s House. Sign up to donate monthly here: Jane’s Fund Patrons

In-person

When you visit the Museum, please donate via the donation boxes or at the till in the shop.

By cheque

If possible, please donate via the JustGiving portal. However, if you wish to send a cheque, please make the cheque payable to ‘Jane Austen’s House Museum’ and write ‘Courtyard Appeal’ on the reverse. If you are a UK taxpayer, please consider completing and sending a Gift Aid form (downloadable here) along with your cheque.

Please avoid sending cash in the post.

It is always so wondrous to walk where someone you admire has walked and see the things they owned. Thank you for looking after the house so well. Museum Visitor