“[Jane] delighted in the scenery around Charmouth with ‘its sweet retired bay backed by dark cliffs, where fragments of low rock among the sands make it the happiest spot for watching the flow of the tide, for sitting in unwearied contemplation.'” A Portrait of Jane Austen, David Cecil, p. 104
“In the Autumn of 1804 Miss Jane Austen, together with her father and mother, spent some weeks at Lyme Regis. As they drove to that place from Bath, they would probably go by way of Shepton Mallet, Somerton and Crewkerne, and, leaving Axminster a couple of miles to their right, would join the Lyme Road where an old inn called “The Hunter’s Lodge” stands. Then passing through the “cheerful village of Uplyme” they would descend the long hill towards Lyme itself, and pass down its quaint main street, which seems to be “almost hurrying into the water” as Miss Austen says. Half way down the street the chaise would turn into a lane, which, running westward, finally makes a precipitous descent to the harbour. At the end of the little parade or “walk” nearest to the harbour on a grassy hillside there stands a long, rambling, white cottage, [Page 134] and it is in this cottage that tradition declares the Austens to have stayed.” From: Jane Austen: Her Home and Her Friends
After securing accommodations and ordering a dinner at one of the inns, the next thing to be done was unquestionably to walk directly down to the sea. They were come too late in the year for any amusement or variety, which Lyme as a public place might offer; the rooms were shut up, the lodgers almost all gone, scarcely any family but of the residents left; and as there is nothing to admire in the buildings themselves, the remarkable situation of the town, the principal street almost hurrying into the water; the walk to the Cobb skirting round the pleasant little bay, which in the season is animated with bathing machines and company; the Cobb itself, its old wonders and new improvements, with the very beautiful line of cliffs stretching out to the east of the town, are what the stranger’s eye will seek; and a very strange stranger it must be who does not see charms in the immediate environs of Lyme to make him wish to know it better.
House in which Jane Austen lodged (see drawing.)
And a Lyme Regis holiday cottage today. (Below)
Also find: Jane Austen in Lyme Regis