Wednesday, August 31

Coleridge Cottage -- More

I suspect everyone who has written to the National Trust about the proposed changes at Coleridge Cottage will have received the same reply, but here it is anyway:

Dear Mr Stannard,

Thank you for your email concerning Coleridge Cottage and Derrick Woolf,
our Custodian, and his partner, Tilla Brading.

We are immensely grateful for the dedication and resource that Derrick
has committed to Coleridge Cottage in his time as Custodian, and to the
support and hard work of Tilla Brading. They have done a great deal to
engender interest in Samuel Taylor Coleridge, and Romantic poetry, and
enriched the experience of those who have visited the cottage.
Furthermore, I am aware that they have supported and encouraged many
poets, established and aspiring, with their kindness and generosity,
with organised readings and publishing ventures.

We are developing plans for Coleridge Cottage, and the interpretation of
Coleridge's life there, which are very much in line with the National
Trust's learning strategies. These have been exemplified by our approach
to education at centres of excellence such as Dunster Castle, Montacute
House and Stourhead, where we have received awards for our student
placement programmes and work with people still in education. We hope
that the new arrangements will continue to provide a stimulating
interest in Coleridge and his time at Nether Stowey.

I am not able to enter into correspondence with you concerning the
National Trust's tenancy arrangements with Derrick Woolf, as these are
private. I can assure you that we are in active communication with him
and Tilla Brading with regard to the transition from the existing
tenancy arrangements. We are very sensitive to their position and will
do our utmost to work with them to balance their needs with the need to
move forward our proposed change to the property.

Yours sincerely

Steve Andrews
Area Manager, Somerset
The National Trust

Which I think means they're going to do what they like.

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