October 21 2014 Latest news:

Local Weather

Overcast

Overcast

max temp: 12°C

min temp: 9°C

Five-day forecast

Plans for Keats House weddings on hold as neighbours pledge to raise shortfall

Crocus' at Keats House. Picture: Nigel Sutton Crocus' at Keats House. Picture: Nigel Sutton

Friday, May 2, 2014
12:30 PM

Plans to host weddings at historic Keats House to boost its ailing income have been put on hold after its neighbours pledged to raise the funds themselves.

To send a link to this page to a friend, you must be logged in.

Three campaigners opposed to weddings at the house in Keats Grove, where Romantic poet John Keats lived between 1818 and 1820, have come together to try to raise the money the weddings would have generated with lavish fundraising events.

In response, the City of London Corporation, which runs Keats House, has postponed its application for a wedding licence.

Vicky Carroll, principal curator, said: “We were impressed by the residents’ plans and their commitment to supporting Keats House, so we have decided to put our application on hold whilst we work with them to implement these fundraising initiatives.

“We are hopeful that these new initiatives will raise significant income to support the upkeep of the house and our events and education programmes.”

Keats House, where the poet wrote Ode to a Nightingale, is mostly funded by the City but the body wants to swell the income it gets from events at the house, which currently include conferences, poetry nights, talks and children’s activities.

At a consultation with neighbours, residents said weddings would cause an influx of traffic, noise pollution and even road accidents. It is hoped the fundraising events, which will include a luxurious dinner at Tower Bridge in October, will go some way towards securing the house’s future.

Campaigners Diana Gore, Robert Gore and Michael Sternberg, who all live nearby, are calling on volunteers to get involved.

But Myra “Bubbles” Polya, a former Camden councillor who lives behind Keats House in Heath Hurst Road, will not be joining them.

She said: “I admire them and I wish them good luck, but I do think the City has the resources to keep up the house. If they stop spending on dams on the Heath, they could look after it.”

She added: “I’m not sure I will be paying for dinner on Tower Bridge. My feeling is that Keats, Fanny Brawne and their whole history shouldn’t be vulgarised and I think that is what has happened to Keats House.”

But curator Ms Carroll added: “In order to ensure that Keats House is financially sustainable, we need to increase the income which we receive from other sources. We are delighted that our neighbours are behind us and are proactively supporting our fundraising efforts.”

To become a member of the campaign team, email diana@igore.org, robert@igore.org or wisebarrister@hotmail.com.

Share this article

0 comments

Comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Hampstead and Highgate Express visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Hampstead and Highgate Express staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Forgotten your password?

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Hampstead and Highgate Express account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Click here to read the Digital Edition of the Ham&High on screen
Use our Wedding site to help you plan your big day!
At WeddingSite we know how much you have to organise for your wedding day, that's why we have designed a set of FREE, simple-to-use tools to make the planning process easy & hassle-free. FIND OUT MORE
Find a date using our online dating and friend finder
You can meet new friends, find romance or simply meet up online with people sharing similar interests and hobbies. FIND OUT MORE
Find a local business using our online directory search
Need a plumber? Or a florist? Or anything else? Search our business directory to find Hampstead businesses in just a few seconds. FIND OUT MORE
Family notices from the Ham&High, with readers' tributes
In memoriam, birthdays, weddings, anniversaries, best wishes & special days. FIND OUT MORE