Alfoxton Park, Somerset. From bristolpost.co.uk
According to media reports in the UK, a former home of the English romanticist William Wordsworth (1770-1850) was bought by a Buddhist charity that owned the listed Alfoxton Park and the 18th-century grounds.
After renovation with the history and heritage of the site in mind, the proposed retreat center will focus on hosting extended meditation retreats and land-based work retreats, as well as arts and creativity events. According to reports, the main house is expected to open for retreats from August next year.
“We are very pleased that we have been entrusted with the guardianship of this beautiful and historic building,” said Dharmachari Lokabandhu, trustee of the Alfoxton Park Trust charity. “We are well aware of its importance and place in British literary heritage and we intend to continue to honor it.” (BBC News)
Listed * Alfoxton Park, a country house in the middle of the scenic Quantock Hills in Somerset, western England, includes outbuildings, a courtyard, walled garden and around 20 acres of gardens and a deer park. The property was the home of Wordsworth and his sister Dorothy from July 1797 to June 1798, and it is here that Wordsworth and fellow theologian and fellow poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772–1834) wrote their seminal poetry collection Lyrical Ballads, with a Few Other Poems (1798), which, among many notable works, includes these lines from Wordsworth:
. . . the best part of a good man’s life:
His little, nameless, absurd deeds
Of kindness and love.
The main library of the house also witnessed the first reading of Coleridge’s famous “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner,” which was also featured in lyric ballads. Wordsworth was Britain’s Poet Laureate from 1843 until his death at the age of 80 in 1850.
The website is said to have sold for £ 2 million ($ 2.6 million).
The historic site was the site of a dwelling for centuries, with the Domesday Book record entry from 1086 documenting the existence of the Manor of Alfoxton. The manor was destroyed in a fire and rebuilt in 1710 in the same place from plastered quarry stone. The abandoned and dilapidated property was last used as a country inn.
“As soon as the building is back to its former glory, we would like to welcome poets, pilgrims and nature lovers – many of whom are already passing by on Coleridge Way, which runs right past our backs.” Door, “said Dharmachari Lokabandhu. (BBC News)
* Officially a particularly important building of more than special interest.
Wordsworth’s home in Alfoxton Park was bought by a Buddhist charity (BBC News)
William Wordsworth’s former Somerset home, Alfoxton Park, sold to Buddhist Charity (County Gazette)
William Wordsworth’s former home to be converted into a Buddhist retreat after being sold for £ 2million (BusinessLive)
William Wordsworth’s home near Bristol to be converted into a Buddhist retreat (BristolLive)