The Gaskell Society and its partners host a year-round programme of meetings and special events, most of which are open to everyone. We’re very friendly – and we’d love to meet you, whether or not you choose to join the Society. 

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The Travels of Cranford

17 October, 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm

Janet Allan, one of the pillars of our wonderful society and the driving force behind the restoration and re-opening of Elizabeth Gaskell’s House, gives a talk which tells the story of a book….

This first edition copy of Cranford – a signed copy once gifted by Elizabeth Gaskell to a friend – has returned to her Manchester home after more than 110 years. Purchased by the Gaskell Society, this signed first edition is now on display in the House, alongside the fascinating story of the book’s four owners.

The book’s two bookplates and inscriptions – including a short note from Elizabeth’s daughter Meta in 1908 – show the book’s journey, from Eliza Shuttleworth, whose husband was one of the founders of the Manchester Guardian and a witness at Peterloo, through to the diplomat Sir Ernest John Ward Barnes, after whose death the book was sold via a bookseller in Brighton.

An incredible history of a rather special edition.

Entry is Included in admission.


17 October
1:00 pm - 2:00 pm


Elizabeth Gaskell’s House
0161 273 2215


Elizabeth Gaskell’s House
84 Plymouth Grove
Manchester, M13 9LW United Kingdom
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0161 273 2215

As you’ll appreciate, arrangements can change, so please be sure to check details before you leave home.