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Thomas Hardy in our Village Hall

This October the village hall has a special weekend of events to celebrate Thomas Hardy, not only one of the greatest of English novelists and poets but also a local writer whose profound influence on the way we see the Wessex countryside continues to this day. There will be a film screening, talks, music, readings and a walk around Shaftesbury, which Hardy described as “the city of a dream” and “one of the queerest and quaintest spots in England … breezy and whimsical”.


Friday 11th October


‘Far from the Madding Crowd’ (1967)

Film starts at 7.15 p.m. Doors open at 6.30 p.m.

Tickets £5.00 each.

Hardy's lush and lyrical romance about 19th century rural life and its inner tensions has been turned into several films, but this is (arguably) the best. Directed by John Schlesinger, it tells the story of Bathsheba Everdene (Julie Christie), a beautiful young woman who inherits a Wessex farm from her uncle. Three very different suitors -- Francis Troy (Terence Stamp), an intense soldier; William Boldwood (Peter Finch), a middle-aged farmer; and Gabriel Oak (Alan Bates), a shepherd of modest means -- contend for Bathsheba's hand, and conflict is inevitable.


Saturday 12th October

 ‘Thomas Hardy the Man’

An evening’s entertainment with supper

Starts at 7.00 p.m.

Tickets £12.00 each

Thomas Hardy was born on 2 June 1840 at Higher Bockhampton, near Dorchester, and died at his beloved Max Gate on 11 January 1928.  During the evening, folk fiddle player Emily Farewell will perform tunes that Hardy, who loved music, would have known well, while the novelist Christopher Nicholson will talk about Hardy’s long life and complex personality. There will be readings from Hardy’s poetry and novels. A light supper is included in the ticket price but please bring your own wine and drink.


Sunday 13th October

Walk around Hardy’s Shaftesbury with Arthur Simmonds

Starts at 3.00 p.m. and finishes at the Grosvenor Inn for a light tea at 4.00 p.m.

Tickets: £5.00 per person

Meet at the TIC in Bell Street, Shaftesbury, followed by tea after the walk.

Booking is essential
All tickets are available from Anna McDowell email:, tel: 01747 829010. Tickets can be booked individually or if you are interested in booking for all three events, there is a £2.00 discount. Please see event details for details of ticket costs.
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