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John Richard Jefferies (1848-1887)

Richard Jefferies 200 x 150

Richard Jefferies was an influential 19th Century writer. He wrote about the countryside both as a naturalist and social commentator, in the mould of Dickens.

He was born at Coate near Swindon and his early book 'Bevis the story of a boy', drew on his boyhood adventures there with his brother.

There is now a Museum in his old house at Coate run by the Richard Jefferies Society, the garden contains a Mulberry Tree from which the tree in Broadwater Cemetery comes.

He suffered from ill health all his life and moved to Goring for the 'air' but unfortunately died from TB in 1887. His influence continued to inspire other writers, among them Henry Williamson of 'Tarka the Otter' fame. He was friends with William Hudson who is also buried in Broadwater Cemetery.

There is also a blue plaque fixed on his old house in Jefferies Lane, Worthing.

The Jefferies Land Conservation Trust was set up in September 2005. For more information on their work, visit the Jefferies Land Trust website.

His wife published his last essays after his death. His books have been republished many times since his death. His observations on the causes of vandalism and discontent are as relevant today as they were in his lifetime and show that there is nothing new under the sun. There is also a memorial garden to Hudson and Jefferies along with plaques commemorating their lives.

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