Waugh in the Belton House Library

A poem entitled “Belton Park”¬†by¬†writer¬†William Bedford has been posted on The¬†Poetry Shed where he is named a Featured Poet. A c.v. and list of his publications can be seen here. The poem was¬†written in memory of Walter Bedford who is presumably his father and is mentioned in the poem. Also mentioned is Evelyn Waugh:

In the library, a visitor worked at his books:
a priestly recorder in a pennyfeather mood,
a yellow waistcoat and hot complexion,
crouched at his words like a smith at the forge.**

**A friend of the Brownlow family, Evelyn Waugh was a frequent visitor to Belton House, where he liked to work in the library.

The footnote is supplied by the poet and refers to¬†the family of Peregrine (“Perry”) Brownlow (1899-1978) who was a friend of Waugh, especially in the mid 1930s before Waugh’s marriage to Laura Herbert. Brownlow and his wife Kitty lived at Belton House near Grantham in Lincolnshire. They were guests at Waugh’s wedding in 1937. Waugh lists Belton¬†as one of the venues where he wrote Edmund Campion. Brownlow also loaned a cottage in Shropshire to Waugh where he wrote much¬†of Waugh in Abyssinia. ¬†That book is¬†dedicated to “Perry and Kitty, who, I have no doubt, will affect to recognize thinly disguised and rather flattering portraits of themselves in this narrative; with my love.” Belton House and most of its contents were deeded to the National Trust in 1984 and is now open to the public.

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