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Max Gate, Dorchester
(4.5/5 based on 150+ reviews on the web)
Max Gate is the former home of Thomas Hardy and is located on the outskirts of Dorchester, Dorset, England.Hardy designed and lived in Max Gate from 1885 until his death in 1928. He lived there with his first wife Emma, and then with his second wife Florence. It was there that he wrote Tess of the d'Urbervilles, Jude the Obscure and The Mayor of Casterbridge, as well as much of his poetry.In 1940, Hardy's sister Kate left the house to the National Trust with the stipulation that it should be lived in. The house has been continually occupied since then. It was first opened to the public in 1994 with restricted access and limited opening times for a few days a week. Beginning in 2011 the National Trust opened all three floors of the house to the public five days a week (from March to October), allowing access to the hall, drawing room, two studies, the dining room and the kitchen. In 2013 two bedrooms were also opened up for the first time, including the room where Thomas Hardy wrote the Mayor of Casterbridge and where he died. The house contains several pieces of Hardy's furniture, although his study has been relocated to the Dorset County Museum.Half of the 100m diameter Neolithic interrupted ditch enclosure known as Flagstones is under the grounds of Max Gate; the other half was archaeologically excavated in 1987 prior to the construction of the Dorchester bypass.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • My wife and I visited Max Gate after going to Hardy’s Cottage as we wanted to see the house he had designed after becoming an architect, it’s a nice house in a lovely garden and well worth visiting. T...  more »
  • The staff were so kind and welcoming and we were given a little talk from one NT volunteer which was both interesting and informative without being boring or too long. The house isn't huge but it was ...  more »
  • This is the house he had built (he had studied architecture as a young man) once he had some success as an author. He lived there with Emma and later Florence, his second wife, and wrote some of his m...  more »
Google
  • Excellent NT house with more laid back feel than usual
  • Lovely house and furniture, authentic to the time:)