As part of the Writing Places Project, we are pleased to announce a programme of events, including an Open Day, at Coleridge Cottage organised by our Writer-in-Residence Rose Collis.
Writing Places is a partnership project between Literature Works, the Literature Development Charity for the South West, The National Trust and The Poetry Archive. The project aims to help more people discover the literary heritage of the South West and to engage them with writing by placing a Writer In Residence at Coleridge Cottage and by running a programme of Community Engagement Events. The Open Day will be a free entry to the house event with the rest of the programme being free with the usual entry fees to the cottage applying.
Open Day: September 29th 2015
Coleridge’s Adventures in Arcadia: Join Rose Collis at Coleridge Cottage, for an informal stroll around the garden and hear stories about Coleridge’s idyllic plans for self-sufficiency; the reality of rural life in the late 18th century and the role the garden played in his work life, including the creation of his famous poem The Lime Tree Bower. Free Entry to the house and gardens.
Free activity in the Reading Room
October 10th 2015
11am – midday
‘Welcome to my Pleasure Dome’: What would a ‘pleasure dome’ mean to people today? For some, it might be a dining room filled with their favourite food and drink. For others, a library full of rare books. For others, a fragrant garden with ponds and tropical birds. For others, a fun fair or amusement arcade. For others, their own artist’s studio. Where would it be? What would it look like? What would be in it? Why? Who would be there? Sounds? Aromas? Textures?
STC had a vision of a ‘pleasure dome’ which he wrote in the birthplace of Romanticism:
In Xanadu did Kubla Khan
A stately pleasure-dome decree:
Where Alph, the sacred river, ran
Through caverns measureless to man
Down to a sunless sea.
So twice five miles of fertile ground
With walls and towers were girdled round:
And there were gardens bright with sinuous rills,
Where blossomed many an incense-bearing tree;
And here were forests ancient as the hills,
Enfolding sunny spots of greenery.
Join Rose Collis in the Reading Room to write a brief description of what your ‘Pleasure Dome’ would be like. These ‘pleasure dome’ proses, poems and stories will be posted in the Reading Room and may even be shared on our website.
Free Masterclass Workshop
October 11th 2015 2-4pm
The Biographer’s Tale: Join Rose Collis, for a lively and humorous workshop giving a personal and practical insight into the pleasures and pitfalls facing biographers – including Coleridge’s − in their quest for ‘the truth’ about an individual life, including exploring and discussing research and different approaches to biography style.
October 30th 2015 11-1pm and 2-4pm
Speaking Objects: Writer-in-Residence Rose Collis leads a creative writing workshop in which participants will be encouraged to unleash their imagination on some of the deceptively simple household and personal items and ephemera on display throughout Coleridge Cottage. What part did objects such as a humble fireplace, a hat, a laudanum bottle or a skillet play in inspiring major works of the Romantic movement? What was their history, and what can they tell us? You decide!
Reading Activity £5 Admission
October 31st 2015 (6.30 – 9.30pm)
Twilight Tales: Gather around Coleridge’s fireplace by candlelight with Rose Collis, Writer-in-Residence, and other readers to enjoy extracts from Gothic works directly influenced by the Romantic writers, including Frankenstein by Mary Shelley and The Vampyre by John Polidori, plus some of Coleridge’s own darker moments.
Free Activity in the Reading Room
November 1st 2015 Time 2-4pm
Domestic Dramas: Rose Collis, Writer-in-Residence, is your host for readings of her specially-devised dramatisations about some of the domestic and personal tensions involving Samuel and Sara Coleridge, and William and Dorothy Wordsworth, adapted from journals, letters and texts by the prolific writer, May Byron.