Fonthill Fever

Fonthill Fever Exhibition @ Gold Hill Museum, Shaftesbury

A major Temporary Exhibition, “Fonthill Fever”, marks the bicentenary of William Beckford’s sale of the Fonthill Abbey estate in 1822.  Curated by Sidney Blackmore, Secretary of the Beckford Society, the full story of the sale (plus a repeat sale in 1823, and an almighty crash in 1825) is superbly told in this not-to-be-missed FREE exhibition at Gold Hill Museum, Shaftesbury.

Philip Hewat-Jaboor (1953 – 2022)

With sadness we record the death of Philip Hewat-Jaboor, a Vice-President of the Beckford Society.

He was our first member, and generously suggested people who might be interested in joining. He was continuously supportive both of the Society and Beckford’s Tower.

His enthusiasm for Beckford resulted in the stupendous William Beckford: An Eye for the Magnificent exhibition (Bard Graduate Center, New York and Dulwich Picture Gallery, London, 2001/2002). This was followed by the Thomas Hope. Regency Designer exhibition (Bard Graduate Center, New York and Dulwich Picture Gallery, London, 2008). The catalogues of these two exhibitions are a monument to his passion for the decorative arts; works which will be used by many successive generations.

We shall miss his friendship, sense of style and connoisseur’s eye. We send our condolences to his family and partner Rod Keenan.

Fonthill Open Days – 2022

The Old Fonthill Abbey Estate (which contains the remains of William Beckford’s Fonthill Abbey) will be open on Sundays 1st and 15th May. 10.00am – 5.00pm (entrance at SP3 6SP). In aid of Parkinsons UK and local charities.

Visitors are invited to take a good hike (or gentle stroll) around the woods and lake. Bluebells should be in flower on 1 May and rhododendrons on the 15th. As in previous years, there will be homemade cakes and soup, prize-winning bangers on the barbecue, and tea and coffee all day.

In the event of high winds, if Stourhead NT is closed, reluctantly so will the Old Fonthill Abbey Estate. If in doubt, please check the NT website.

The gardens of Fonthill House (SP3 5SA) will be open in aid of Beckford’s Tower on Sunday 8 May. Wonderful woodland walks, magnificent views and formal gardens.

Beckford Lecture 2019

The Beckford Lecture and Dinner will be held at the Travellers Club on Thursday 17th October 2019 at 6:30pm. A booking form has been enclosed with the newsletter mailing and is also available here.