Patty Townsend was born on 14 April 1845 in Coventry. She lived at Attleborough Hall, about a mile from the centre of Nuneaton. She went to the Misses Franklin’s School in Coventry. George Eliot attended this school some years earlier. By the late 1880s Patty’s work was becoming well known. She illustrated the landscape around Nuneaton in which George Eliot grew up. These places provided inspiration for the background of a number of the author’s novels and poems.