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|The Assembly Rooms, Lyme
Written by Julie W
(Sunday, 11 January 2009, at 11:34 a.m.)
Anyone visiting Lyme today looking for the Assembly Rooms where JA was accosted by man who did not have the honour of an introduction to her, will be sadly disappointed. They were demolished long ago, in 1927 after being damaged by a violent storm and in their place is a car park.
Here is a map of 1824 which though a little late for JA's visit in 1804,is useful as it shows the position of the Assembly rooms.
Constance Hill in her book Jane Austen, her Homes and her Friends visited the rooms before their demolition and gave us this interesting description of them before they were converted into a cinema and tea room:
The Assembly Rooms used formerly to be thrown open to company during the season twice a week, namely on Tuesdays and Thursdays. "The ball last night was pleasant," Jane writes on September 14, "but not full for Thursday. My father stayed contentedly till half-past nine (we went a little after eight), and then walked home with James and a lanthorn; though I believe the lanthorn was not lit as the moon was up; but sometimes the lanthorn may be a great convenience to him."
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