Tourism

< Back to the map (alternative version) or the index list.

A photograph of some sheep.

In the Victorian era, the Isle of Wight became a popular tourist destination.  Whereas our modern celebrities tend to be actors, actresses, models & musicians, Victorian ‘lions’ were often artists, writers & poets. On one occasion the short-sighted Tennyson fled from a flock of sheep thinking it was a group of tourists.

Picture of Farringford House with the quote "Now that Tennyson's fame encircled the globe, Farringford became one of the most overun spots in Europe, people lurking about the shrubberies, staring in at his windows, and watching him as he walked out of his gates" Napier (1892). the Homes and Haunts of Tennyson.

“Now that Tennyson’s fame encircled the globe, Farringford became one of the most overun spots in Europe, people lurking

about the shrubberies, staring in at his windows, & watching him as he walked out of

his gates”. Napier (1892). the Homes & Haunts of Tennyson.

To avoid tourists, Tennyson built a hidden gate between Farringford & Dimbola. He also built a bridge from Farringford to the footpath leading up to the Downs  so he could avoid crowds of his admirers.

The gate between Dimbola Lodge and Farringford House.

Although Freshwater was a very popular tourist destination during Tennyson’s lifetime, there are no postcards from this time because the Royal Mail did not allow printed picture postcards until 1894.

A postcard from after the Victorian era.

A postcard from after the Victorian era.

Some postcards from just after Tennyson’s death in 1892 are below.  Many postcards of Freshwater were produced that included images of places connected to Tennyson.

Postcard of Freshwater Bay esplanade.

Postcard of cows drinking from a stream next to Farringford House.

A postcard of Farringford House.