J M Barrie’s Birthplace teacher information

J M Barrie, writer and creator of Peter Pan, was born at 9 Brechin Road, Kirriemuir in 1860. He lived there until he was 10 years old.

Barrie eventually settled in London where he became a successful playwright. The most famous of his works has always been his magical children’s story of Peter Pan.

The upper floors of this house are furnished as they may have been when Barrie lived there in mid-Victorian times. Downstairs is some Barrie memorabilia, while in the adjacent house there is an exhibition of Barrie’s life and work. Displays include original manuscripts and a selection of Peter Pan costumes. Don’t miss ‘the most uncomfortable seat in the whole of (London) city’! The outside wash-house, said by Barrie to be his first theatre, may also be the original ‘Wendy house’ – Barrie invented
the name of Wendy for his story of Peter Pan.

A school visit offers opportunities for cross-curricular work and engaging with the Curriculum for Excellence. Pupils have the chance to see a Victorian home, take a tour of the house where J M Barrie was born and visit the exhibition about Barrie’s life and work. They can also see the wash-house and relax in the garden.

Possible topics

  • Scottish literature
  • Victorians
  • Theatre and plays

Resources for schools

  • Peter Pan and Tinkerbell replica costumes (to view)
  • Books about Peter Pan or J M Barrie are available in the shop.

Planning your class visit

  • To book: please contact the House of Dun for a booking form.
  • Book well in advance to avoid disappointment.
  • Tours of the house are teacher-led during normal opening hours and led by Trust staff outwith normal opening hours.
  • Maximum number: 30 pupils, with a ratio of 1 teacher/adult to 10 pupils
  • Access: we regret that only the ground floor of the house and the garden are accessible to wheelchair users.
  • Parking: please check arrangements for your coach or minibus when booking.
  • Toilets: there is one toilet in the garden; this is not fully accessible. There are also toilets in the public car park, about 150 metres from Barrie’s Birthplace.
  • Refreshments: there are no refreshments for sale but pupils are welcome to picnic in the garden. There is no wet weather area (although small groups might use the workshop - please check with property staff).
  • The site has been risk assessed. Teachers should prepare their own risk assessment for the visit.

Charges

  • There is no admission charge for schools with Trust educational membership in normal opening hours. For member school visits outwith normal opening hours, there is an admission charge of £2 per pupil.
  • Non-members are welcome but there is an admission charge of £3 per pupil.
  • Accompanying adults are admitted free.
  • All class teachers are encouraged to make a free preparatory visit to the site.

During your class visit

  • On arrival: please report to the reception desk in the house.
  • Tours of the house are teacher-led during normal opening hours (a Trust staff member will be on site).
  • Tours are led by Trust staff when the house has been opened especially for a school visit.
  • The class should be split into 3 groups; each group must be accompanied by a teacher/school helper. 
  • The visit will last up to 1 hour (depending on your pupils’ requirements).
  • Teachers are responsible for their pupils and their behaviour.
  • Photos cannot be taken inside the house – but can be taken in the wash-house and garden.
  • Coats and bags can be left in the workshop area.
  • Shop: there is a small shop – pupils are welcome to visit in small groups and with teacher supervision.
Download

If you prefer to print this information you can use this download. Please note that some of this information may now be out of date. Most notably, Kirriemuir Camera Obscura is no longer in the care of the Trust.