The Sunday Times published an interview earlier this month of Victoria Howard. She is described as the new chatelaine of Castle Howard in North Yorkshire where both the TV and cinema versions of Brideshead Revisited were filmed. She refuses to be drawn on questions by interviewer Eleanor Doughty on the forcible eviction of the family of her husband’s younger brother a few years ago, citing a legal non-disclosure agreement. She is more interested in discussing the expense of the upkeep on the estate and its constant need for repairs:
The list of “to dos” is alarmingly long: the mausoleum requires urgent restoration and the roof of the dome needs to be replaced. The Temple of the Four Winds was last restored in the 1950s, so it is due a makeover soon. To fund the works, she is considering putting on a contemporary art exhibition or a literary festival — after all, she should have great contacts, and the Evelyn Waugh connection could be exploited further. The couple are both fans of classical music and would like to increase their roster of concerts.
She must mean the “Brideshead Revisited” connection, since Waugh himself had little connection with the estate, having visited there only once (so far as we know) in the 1930s as a day tripper and having had no known connection with the family who live there. Still, one can look forward to seeing what sort of art exhibition or literary festival can be conjured up from that connection.