Landscape and Literature

Photo of George Orwell (Eric Blair) feeding his goats in Wallington in 1939 – *see below

Co-ordinator: Alex Reeve – – 01799 522 818

Writers of prodigious talent have plied their trade while living in Hertfordshire, Essex and Cambridgeshire, and the landscape has influenced their work: George Orwell found inspiration for Animal Farm in the village of Wallington; E.M. Foster’s home Rook’s Nest in Old Stevenage is the model for Howard’s End; Berkhamstead is revealed as Greeneland, a place inhabited by many of Graham Greene’s exotic characters; and G.B. Shaw fantasises moving in with the village postmistress in Ayot St Lawrence in his play Village Wooing. Rupert Brooke probably suffered from homesickness in Berlin when writing of his beloved Grantchester in Berlin; and H G Wells wrote Mr Britling Sees It Through at Little Easton.

Read the books then visit the places that inspired some of the greatest literature of the last five hundred years in a series of walks around diverse and delightful corners of our region.

The walks will be by arrangement with participants. Please contact Alex Reeve at – 01799 522 818 for further details.

Walks Planned

  1. Shakespeare Sonnet Walk
    Be entertained by actors, minstrels and poets who will perform Shakespeare’s sonnets and songs and you explore the delights of the medieval streets and gardens of Saffron Walden.
    Saturday 20th April running from 11am to 3.30pm.
    Tickets £10 from TIC
  2. Rupert Brooke walk along the river Cam from Grantchester on Friday 3rd May. Free. Please Contact for more information and to reserve a space.

* Above photo –  Usage terms Dennis Collings: © Estate of Dennis Collings. Published under a Creative Commons Non-Commercial Licence. UCL: © Orwell Archive, UCL Library Special Collections.