We were heading to the north east for a few days and stopped overnight in Nuneaton on the way. One of Nuneaton’s most famous residents was Mary Ann Evans – better known as Victorian author George Eliot – who was born in Nuneaton in 1819. Many of the fictional places in her novels are set in the area and the town is very rightly proud of her. There are many references to the novelist in Nuneaton including a local hospital named after her, a hotel, a large building in the centre of town and a statue! The Waterstones here is in a modern building set over two floors. Due to the market it was difficult to get far enough back to take a good photograph of the front of the shop.
George Eliot statue
There are plaques on the side, one listing her notable works and the others read:
“1819 – 1880 Born at Arbury, Nuneaton. Unveiled by Jonathan G. Ouvry president of the George Eliot Fellowship, Great, Great Grandson of G. H. Lewes. March 22nd 1986. Erected by public subscription.”
“Mary Ann Evans (George Eliot). Novelist, essayist, journalist and poet. Lived at Griff House until 1840 when she moved to Coventry and later to London. From 1854 to 1878 she lived with G. H. Lewes who encouraged her to write fiction. Her novels brought her world wide fame. In May 1880, she married J. W. Cross and died in December at 4, Cheyne Walk, Chelsea. She is buried in Highgate Cemetery, London.”
We liked the town. There was a large, lively Saturday market and there are some beautiful buildings if you remember to look up! One of these, a former Co-op, is currently being redeveloped and will be an ‘Escape’ room. I’m pleased to read that they’re keeping the gorgeous Art Deco façade. We also thought the Town Hall building very attractive.
Currently reading Follow You Home by Mark Edwards, and listening to A Litter of Bones (DCI Logan #1) by J D Kirk