Our superstar in wellies
JOHN LEWIS-STEMPEL’S lyrical observations of rural life have entranced COUNTRY LIFE readers since his column, From the Fields, began last year. It should therefore come as no surprise, although we are delighted just the same, that he has been granted the prestigious BSME Award for Columnist of the Year in the Special Interest & Business Brand category.
‘If you’re from and of the countryside, who else but COUNTRY LIFE would you want to write for?’ he asks. ‘To receive an “Oscar” from the magazine world for doing the job I love is a double blessing.’
The BSME judges were unanimous in their praise for Mr Lewis-stempel (above), whom they call ‘the perfect writer in the perfect place, erudite, informative and poetic’. COUNTRY LIFE Editor Mark Hedges adds: ‘John is simply the countryside’s most beautiful writer—a superstar in wellies.’
G. F. Watts’s Portrait of Violet Lindsay, later Marchioness of Granby and Duchess of Rutland (above, about 1879), ‘a Symbolist icon’, has been secured for the nation, thanks to the Art Fund, the ACE/ V&A Purchase Grant Fund and other generous donors. It is now on display at the Watts Gallery, Compton, Surrey, along with more than 40 drawings by the sitter, donated by her grandson, the historian John Julius Norwich (until February 19, 2017).
Next year, this ‘single most important portrait by Watts’ will feature in a major Watts bicentenary exhibition. For further information, visit www.wattsgallery.org.uk