Free tours for one day only offer a glimpse into the life of Charles Wesley

Charles Wesley
A portrait of legendary hymn writer and leader of the Methodist movement, Charles Wesley.Wikimedia Commons


A historic house in Bristol that was once the home of Charles Wesley is to open its doors to members of the public for one day only next month.

Number 4 Charles Street normally opens only for special group bookings of 10 people or more but will be opening up for individuals or smaller groups to come along on September 14. 

The New Room museum, situated in the nearby Wesley Chapel, will be running two free tours of the prolific hymn writer’s home, which was built in 1742 and lived in by Wesley and his family from 1749 to 1771. 

The house has been restored to its 18th century appearance with fittings and furnishings from the period, and the tours will take people around six rooms showing how they might have looked when Charles and his family called the building their home. 

The rooms included in the tour are the parlour, the music room, the study, the kitchen, and two bedrooms.



Visitors will also be able to read exhibition boards telling the story of Charles, his wife Sally and their gifted children, one of whom was known as ‘the English Mozart’.

The house is being opened up on the same weekend as Bristol Open Doors, when many historic buildings across the city that are otherwise closed to the general public make themselves available for visits from September 13 to 15 only. 

Charles Wesley house
The beautifully restored kitchen in Charles Wesley’s house

Kate Rogers, community engagement officer for the New Room, said: “This is an exclusive opportunity which will cheer up anyone who has been unlucky in applying for the very over-subscribed Bristol Open Doors venues on the same day.

“Charles Wesley’s house isn’t actually included in the Bristol Open Doors scheme this year, but we’re expecting a high level of demand, partly because the tours are being offered on the same weekend.

“Although we’re not charging for these tours, numbers will be limited so pre-booking is essential.”

Tours depart from the New Room in Broadmead, also known as John Wesley’s Chapel, at 11.30am and 1.30pm.  Reservations can be made by calling the New Room on 0117 926 4740. Due to the steps, disabled access is not available. At normal times, the house is open only for pre-booked groups (of 10 or more people). For more information, visit www.charleswesleyhouse.org.uk. Full details of the exclusive tours are available on the event page of the New Room’s website www.newroombristol.org.uk/events



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