Charles Darwin

1809 - 1882


Darwin was born in Shrewbury and went on his famous voyage on HMS Beagle 1831-6.
On his return he married his cousin Emma Wedgewood and they moved into a house in Gower Street.
A blue plaque has been put on the college building that stands on the site.
After the birth of two children they moved to Down House in Kent where they remained.

DOWN HOUSE (pictured in header) is now in the care of English Heritage. The rooms on the ground floor are presented as they would have been in Darwin's time. The first floor has been redesigned with new exhibitions including a reconstruction of the cabin on board the Beagle. There is also a Turning the Pages feature, an audio guide narrated by David Attenborough and a video guide with which to explore the garden. This includes the Sand Walk - Darwin's 'thinking path'.

Down House and its surroundings has been nominated as a World Heritage Site. In conjunction with this the London Borough of Bromley has produced a number of publications including an illustrated booklet 'Darwin at Downe'. Bromley central library has copies or it can be downloaded from the website along with trails (including audio)
There is a mural depicting Darwin in Market Square, Bromley.

The Natural History Museum has a dedicated website
The Wellcome Trust is part of this initiative

Talks on Darwin's voyage on the Beagle, referring to ship's logs, were given at the National Archives on 28 Jan 2008 & 26 March 2009. They are now available as podcasts. 2009