In 1945, Eddy Sackville-West, Desmond Shawe-Taylor and Eardley Knollys - writers for the New Statesman and a National Trust administrator - purchased Long Crichel House, an old rectory with no electricity and an inadequate water supply. In this improbable place, the last English literary salon began. Quieter and less formal than the famed London literary salons, Long Crichel became an idiosyncratic experiment in communal living. Sackville-West, Shawe-Taylor and Knollys - later joined by the literary critic Raymond Mortimer - became members of one another's surrogate families and their companionship became a stimulus for writing, for them and their guests. Long Crichel's visitors' book reveals a Who's Who of the arts in post-war Britain - Nancy Mitford, Benjamin Britten, Laurie Lee, Cyril Connolly, Somerset Maugham, E.M. Forster, Cecil Beaton, Vita Sackville-West and Harold Nicolson - who were attracted by the good food, generous quantities of drink and excellent conversation. For Frances Partridge and James Lees-Milne, two of the twentieth century's finest diarists, Long Crichel became a second home and their lives became bound up with the house. Yet there was to be more to the story of the house than what critics variously referred to as a group of 'hyphenated gentlemen-aesthetes' and a 'prose factory'. In later years the house and its inhabitants were to weather the aftershocks of the Crichel Down Affair, the Wolfenden Report and the AIDS crisis. The story of Long Crichel is also part of the development of the National Trust and other conservation movements. Through the lens of Long Crichel, archivist and writer Simon Fenwick tells a wider story of the great upheaval that took place in the second half of the twentieth century. Intimate and revealing, he brings to life Long Crichel's golden, gossipy years and, in doing so, unveils a missing link in English literary and cultural history.
Frances Partridge: the last survivor of the Bloomsbury group - the authorised biography. Frances Partridge was one of the great British diarists of the 20th century. She became part of the Bloomsbury group encountering Virginia Woolf, Lytton Strachey, the Bells, Roger Fry, Maynard Keynes, Dora Carrington and Ralph Partridge. She and Ralph fell in love and married in 1933. During the Second World War they were committed pacifists and they enjoyed the happiest times of their lives together, entertaining friends such as E.M. Forster, Robert Kee and Duncan Grant. Despite losing both her husband and son, Frances maintained an astonishing appetite for life, whether for her friends, travelling, botany, or music. Her diaries (which she continued to write until her death in 2004) chronicle her life from the 1930s onwards. Their publication brought her recognition and acclaim, and earned her the right to be seen not as a minor character on the Bloomsbury stage but standing at the centre of her own.
This long-awaited study of the life and music of Anglo-Irish composer Ernest John Moeran (1894-1950) finally provides a full biography of the last senior figure in early twentieth-century British Music to have been without one. Although Moeran's work was widely performed during his lifetime, he suffered neglect in the years following his death. It was not until a re-awakening of appreciation for the music of the folksong-inspired English pastoralism in the latter part of the twentieth century that Moeran's tuneful, well-crafted and approachable music began to attract a new audience. However, widely accepted misconceptions about his life and character have obscured a clearunderstanding of both man and composer. Written with the benefit of access to previously unknown or unresearched archives, Ernest John Moeran: His Life and Music strips away a hitherto unchallenged mythological framework, and replaces it by a thorough-going examination and analysis of the life and work of a musician that may reasonably be asserted as having been unique in British music history.
The life of the painter and designer Duncan Grant spanned great changes in society and art, from Edwardian Britain to the 1970s, from Alma-Tadema to Gilbert and George. This authoritive biography combines an engrossing narrative with an invaluable assessment of Grant's individual achievement and his place within Bloomsbury and in the wider development of British art. 'Spalding's skill is to sketch out the intricate emotional web against the bright bold untouchable figure of the artist. . . Her achievement is to let that sense of a man living with his craft shine through on every page: the result is an exceptionally honest and warm portrait. ' Financial Times
This is a resource book not only for historians and anthropologists, but also for Native people exploring personal and community histories. The stories told in the book may encourage other former students in their healing process.