How did Northern Ireland influence Narnia?

C S Lewis, author of the Chronicles of Narnia books, was born in Belfast in 1898. Jack, as he was known to friends and family, grew up in east Belfast close to the docks and the Harland and Wolff shipyard – world famous for building ships like Titanic.

He spent the summer holidays with brother Warren and their mother outside Belfast, in seaside towns and villages all around Northern Ireland’s coast. The mountains and countryside that Jack first saw on these holidays made a lasting impression on him.

Although he only really lived in Northern Ireland until the age of 10, the places and memories from his childhood inspired the writing of C S Lewis throughout his life.

Aslan at CS Lewis Square
Aslan at CS Lewis Square

Searching for Narnia – we walk in the footsteps of the young C S Lewis, visiting some of the places in Northern Ireland that influenced his Chronicles of Narnia books.

Click on image below to discover more about the places in Northern Ireland that inspired C S Lewis in his writing.

Activity

Write about somewhere that inspires you.

Is there any place – a building, landscape, town, village, street, farm, house or room – that you would like to write about?

In your story, think about how this place inspires you and makes you feel. What goes on there, why is it so special, what makes it unique?

Describe it in as much detail as you can. Is this place beautiful, or is it creepy and dangerous, or is it safe and warm? What secrets does it hold?

A child writingAlamy