Lord Byron Bicentenary

Get a glimpse into the sensational world of one of history's most notorious poets with our top 10 facts about Lord Byron including his life, his death and his time in Nottinghamshire.

1. He lived in Nottingham and Nottinghamshire

He lived in a few locations throughout Nottinghamshire, including a house on St James Street in Nottingham City Centre, Newstead Abbey in Ravenshead and Burgage Manor in Southwell. He lived at each premises for different times, and even published his first books with a publisher in Newark.

There are many literary references to Nottinghamshire in his works, particularly Newstead Abbey, which you can still visit to this day, see his bedroom, assorted artefacts, works and follow his footsteps down the halls he once called home.

2. He once took a pet bear to Cambridge University

In a whimsical act of defiance against convention, Byron famously sidestepped university regulations by adopting a rather unconventional companion—a bear! His audacity and irreverence continue to inspire generations to challenge the status quo and embrace their uniqueness.

3. He built a lavish tomb for his beloved dog, Boatswain

Amidst the grandeur of Newstead Abbey lies a touching testament to Byron's love for his loyal companion, Boatswain. The lavish tomb, larger than Byron's own, stands as a poignant reminder of the profound bond between man and beast, immortalized in Byron's heartfelt poem ‘Epitaph to a Dog’ inscribed on the tomb.

Acclaimed author and broadcaster Geoffrey Bond even published ‘Lord Byron’s Best Friends’ about Byron’s relationship with animals, available now on Amazon. His published work also extends to books and texts about Byron including a piece about their shared home in Southwell, and the varied portraits of Byron in ‘Dangerous to Show’, exploring the poet's life through the intriguing stories behind the famous images. Find more at geoffreybondbooks.com.

4. He is buried in Nottinghamshire

Nottinghamshire holds the hallowed grounds where Byron found his eternal rest. Alongside his esteemed daughter, Ada Lovelace, Byron lies in repose within the familial vault at St Mary Magdalene's Church in Hucknall—a place of pilgrimage for admirers of his enduring legacy.

5. He was disabled, bisexual, and bulimic

Historical account details his disordered eating, club foot and attraction to both men and women among other rumours. His story serves as a beacon of hope for those navigating their own path against the currents of convention.

6. There is a glacier in Alaska named after him

Found next to Alaska's Portage Lake, one of the youngest lakes in the world, Byron's name echoes in the form of a majestic glacier. Amidst nature's splendor, Byron's immortal legacy finds new heights, reminding us of the enduring power of poetry to transcend boundaries.

And he is in good company, located near both Shakespeare Glacier and Burns Glacier.

7. He made a chalice from a skull

Newstead Abbey is a former Abbey, inhabited by Monks for hundreds of years before it became a private residence. This is why the poet Lord Byron was able to unearth a skull from the grounds of the estate, eventually turning it into a drinking chalice, which is said to have contained a whole bottle of wine!

The chalice has become a symbol of his fascination with history and his irreverent spirit, the chalice remains a tantalizing glimpse into Byron's enigmatic persona. The chalice is thought to have been destroyed by the next owners of Newstead Abbey, though a recreation is still to be found in his old study at Newstead.

8. He has a famous daughter

Described as an analyst, metaphysician, and founder of scientific computing, Ada Lovelace became a lifelong friend of Charles Babbage, the computer pioneer. She wrote about his ‘Analytical Engine’ with such clarity and insight that her work became the defining text explaining the process now known as computer programming.

9. There are Byron museums in Nottinghamshire, Italy, and Greece.

From Nottinghamshire to Italy and Greece, museums dedicated to Byron's life and work stand as monuments to his international acclaim. Each location bears witness to Byron's transformative journey, from his humble beginnings to his enduring impact on global literature.

10. There are 36 Byron societies all over the world

Once again showing his international popularity and widespread global influence, the International Association of Byron Societies list 36 different Byron societies in the world, including locations in America, India, Greece, Lebanon and more.

You can see the full list at internationalassociationofbyronsocieties.org.

This year marks 200 years since the death of the famous poet and Nottinghamshire resident, Lord Byron. To learn more and find ways to remember the acclaimed poet during his bicentenary year, click here.


Byron's Bash
Byron 200
Two characters dressed as Byron and a monk stand back to back in raucous laughter, beckoning the camera with wide smiles.

Come dressed as Byron to join in the weekend anniversary activities through the historic house and gardens inspired by Byron’s activity here.

Byron at Newstead Abbey
Byron 200
An actor dressed as Lord Byron poses in front of Newstead Abbey with two large Newfoundland dogs.

Newstead Abbey was once home to the infamous Romantic poet Lord Byron. To celebrate the Bicentenary of Lord Byon in 2024, they are hosting a range of fantastic events throughout the year allowing you to get closer than ever before to the man behind the celebrity.

Newstead Abbey
Historic Site
Newstead Abbey

A beautiful historic house set in a glorious landscape of gardens and parkland within the heart of Nottinghamshire.

Byron at Bromley
Byron 200
Photo of the interior of Bromley House Library

As part of the Byron200 celebrations, Bromley House is marking Lord Byron's bicentenary with an exhibition of our special collections relating to the poet.



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