Saturday, October 14, 2017

Birthday Lecture 4 November 2017

Roger Ebbatson writes: My talk will endeavour to offer a comparative juxtaposition of selected writings by Jefferies & Hardy dealing both with the social and agrarian issues experienced by the workfolk during the Great Depression and, in a countervailing movement, with the more inward personal experience of spiritual aspiration and an intuitive sense of ‘the Beyond’. The focus will be on selected essays in The Hills & the Vale, set in comparison and contradistinction with Hardy’s Tess of the d’Urbervilles. Whilst Jefferies, in his final essays, moves away from social issues towards a more inward and transcendental mode of thought, in Tess of the d’Urbervilles in a countervailing movement the heroine’s innate spirituality is progressively negated and undermined by her life-experiences, her rape/seduction and subsequent marital abandonment leading her towards the culminating communal immiseration of the field-workers at Flintcomb-Ash, followed by her arrest at Stonehenge and subsequent execution. The social consciousness exhibited, for instance, in Jefferies’ ‘The Wiltshire Labourer’ or ‘After the County Franchise’ is also powerfully articulated in the final tragic stages of Hardy’s novel, both writers’ diagnosis chiming with the Marxian account of change in the Victorian countryside, whilst Jefferies’ more mystical final phase, which is not echoed in Hardy, may be more productively framed by reference to the Heideggerian concept of ‘the Open’.

Roger Ebbatson is Visiting Professor at Lancaster University, a Fellow of the English Association, and a Vice-President of the Tennyson Society. He has written extensively on Richard Jefferies, beginning with Lawrence & the Nature Tradition (1980), and subsequently in An Imaginary England (2005), Heidegger’s Bicycle (2006), Landscape & Literature (2013), and most recently, Landscapes of Eternal Return (2016) that will be reviewed in the next RJS Journal (Summer 2018)

Saturday, August 05, 2017

Tour of Broadwater Cemetery - August 2017

Michael Parrott reported that there were 86 members of the public at the 5 August tour at Broadwater Cemetery, Worthing. The only vandals are the grass-cutting contractors who have taken out a couple of chips of marble from the kerb stone of Jefferies’ grave and also have damaged memorial trees with strimmers. The Friends of Broadwater Cemetery have lodged a complaint and this is being taken seriously by the council. They should too - the Jefferies’ grave is a Grade II listed building. The memorial garden wild flowers are going over now; there are still geraniums and mallows low down in the grass. The memorial mulberry tree leaves are a bit spotty and most of the fruit was battered down by recent heavy rain. The photographs are supplied by Mr Parrott. 

Richard Jefferies' grave tended by Michael Parrott

Jefferies-Hudson Memorial Garden with bench supplied by the Richard Jefferies Society 

Entrance to Broadwater Cemetery

Friday, June 16, 2017

Duncan Pepper

Friday, June 09, 2017

Exhibition at the Richard Jefferies Museum

Terry Humphries and Susan Carr have an exhibition of work at the Richard Jefferies Museum Gallery which includes paintings and drawings made in and around the museum.

Monday, June 05, 2017


From the left: Angus Maclennan, John Price and Richard Fortey
The Richard Jefferies Society and The White Horse Bookshop Writer's Prize has been awarded to British palaeontologist, natural historian, writer and broadcaster Richard Fortey for The Wood for the Trees (William Collins). From a short list of five, the panel judged that the book best met the criterion of reflecting themes or topics broadly consistent with Jefferies’ writing.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Connections and Inspirations: the Influence of Richard Jefferies on Writers and Poets


SATURDAY 24 June 2017

Connections and Inspirations: the Influence of Richard Jefferies on Writers and Poets

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Sunday, March 05, 2017

Saturday, October 08, 2016

Birthday Lecture 5 Nov 2016