Dennis Severs’ House

18 Folgate St, London E1 6BX, UK

There is no sign for Denis Severs’ House. Walk down Folgate Street in Spitalfields, look for a flickering gas lamp over a relatively nondescript door, and knock. Wait. Eventually, someone will come to the door and welcome you into the past. It isn’t a museum, it isn’t a historic home, it isn’t a theater. It experience. As a visitor to Denis Severs’ House you are a participant in the life and history of the Jervis family; a family of Huguenot silk weavers from the 18th century. You are asked to remain silent as you move through the house, absorbing the sights, smells, and sounds in each room. Half-eaten oranges on the table, a jacket tossed casually across a chair, the sound of hoofbeats in the alleyway, and the washing strung up in the rafters. You feel the family’s presence in each room of the house. Mr. Severs himself said, “You either get it, or you don’t.” Book the evening “silent” tour and you can sip champagne by a roaring fire in your favorite room.

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