A whole month since our reading of Winter Holiday. It was a real joy to sit in that room with its magnificent view and listen to people reading a wonderful story.
As most of you will know, this was our third live Arthur Ransome reading (a fourth was done online in 2020), and the fourth live marathon I’ve been part of organising; Moby Dick over three days was was my first.
In every case I’ve been struck by just how much respect and attention everyone brings to the reading. We all take a chance reading in front of others, and being able to do that in such a supportive group, most of whom are strangers to each other, is very special. Eileen and I thank you all for it.
Liz Wakelin, who you may have seen sketching during the reading, is hoping to use some of the pictures in a book project over the coming year.
We are very grateful to the fabulous Windermere Jetty Museum who hosted our reading.
We made a decision early on in this adventure not to record or video the readings, partly so that people wouldn’t be put off, and partly because it seems better to leave them to memory, but Liz’s pictures will at least leave a permanent physical trace of this one.Thank you again from Eileen and me for a wonderful day.
So what next? Of the Lakes stories, we have yet to read Swallowdale, so maybe that should be our project for next summer. Suggestions for venues gratefully received!
Swallows and Amazons (and Ds) forever!
Please provide a chapter by chapter recording of the event online for peple unable to attend.
Dear Chris and Eileen It was a wonderful and memorable occasion! Thank you for letting me be part of it.
Venue: It needs to be by the lake. The Jetty Museum would be good. I don’t think there’s anywhere on the other side of the lake. Coniston- Ruskin Museum, Bluebird Cafe. Best wishes Doug
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Thanks Doug. We’ll keep you posted!
Liz Wakelin has created a lovely image.
With respect to venues for a Swallowdale reading, as you know there are very few options in the vicinity of Swallowdale country and I suppose the choice of a place will depend, in part, on whether the event wants to attract visitors in the area to stop and listen for a bit. It would be good, I think, to raise awareness of Ransome’s novels. There also needs to be wet weather ‘resilience’.
Ideas that spring to mind:
a) The Ruskin Museum in Coniston that is home to Mavis, now renamed Amazon, which is the boat owned by the Altounyan family that originally inspired Ransome’s boat sailed by Nancy and Peggy.
b) Bank Ground Farm, the guesthouse overlooking Coniston Water with Kanchenjunga in the background and the waterfront with boathouses.
c) Brantwood, again over-looking Coniston Water.
d) The Red Lion pub at Lowick Bridge where, as a young man, Ransome used to give his clay pipes to charcoal burners to sweeten in their charcoal puddings. There is a backroom seating area in the pub.
and a very quiet venue:
e) St Paul’s church in the Rusland valley, where Arthur and Evgenia are buried. There is a community hall across the road from the church, but no ‘passing trade’.
Just ideas. I hope they help you to narrow down the choice.
All the best,
Thanks so much Paul. All good ideas, and we will keep you posted of course. Thanks again for your support.