"It was now that Sawrey began to be familiar with the spetacle of Miss Potter, at any season of the year and in all weathers, going about her affairs in the village with sturdy preoccupation, indifferent to appearances. Her feet, like Mrs. Cannon's would be thrust into the leather~topped, wooden~soled clogs of the district which kept her dry and could be kicked off at the doorstep; her stout tweed skirts would be double or triple, according to the cold; and over her head and shoulders, if it were raining, she was more likely to throw a sack than a coat or shawl. There was something about this little figure, now in her forties growing plumper but still very rosy of cheek and blue of eye, which was singularly attractive; and her forthright unpretentiousness, and the common~sense practical vigour with which she shouldered her growing farm,made Sawrey feel (as she passionately felt herself) that she belonged there ~ regardless of the fact that she really came from London, and in spite of the north~country preference for distinguishing newcomers for at least a generation as 'off~comes', which can be fairly closely translated as 'rubbishing foreigners'."
"Beatrix Potter was in love with her lifein Sawrey, and with the whole of Hill Top. Prudently and steadily she increased her holding there ~ a few sheep, an extra cow, another field: even, as they came into the market, two other little farms in the village, with fields adjoining; and a white~washed cottage here and there, and a small stone quarry; until, in the course of a few years, she had come to own half the village, and was a person to be reckoned with in Sawrey. But she was not yet free to live the life she loved, and there was no immediate prospect of her being so. 'I am on the committee and a determined person,' she wrote to Millie Warne in 1911, describing the village row over the coronation celebrations, 'but ~ unfortunately non~resident.' She regretted it from every point of view, and must have envied Bertram, with his growing farm and his independence, comfortably out of sight in the Border country; but there were her parents and the dosmestic life of Bolton Gardens to be considered: and the London of her 'unloved birthplace' was still, for three~quarters of the year at least, her home."
Photos of Beatrix Potter in younger and older years.