Actor Julian Sands and author Julia Donaldson back Horsham’s Shelley Memorial Project
Two major figures from the art world have announced their backing for Horsham’s Shelley Memorial Project.
Stage and screen actor Julian Sands and author and playwright Julia Donaldson are supprting the project which aims to commission a Horsham public artwork to commemorate the poet Percy Bysshe Shelley.
The project has already been endorsed by former Children’s Laureate Michael Rosen.
Actor Julian Sands, best known for roles in ‘A Room with a View’ and ‘Warlock’, is a great Shelley enthusiast.
He has worked closely with the Keats and Shelley Memorial Association on Keats-Shelley200, a programme of events marking the 200th anniversary of the death of the poets.
Julian has also accepted an invitation to become a patron of the Shelley Memorial project.
He said: “It is a privilege to be involved with the pursuit of a public memorial to Percy Bysshe Shelley in his birthplace of Horsham ... His vigour ... his intellectual fire-power ... his political commitment ... his understanding of the importance of nature ... his belief in civil rights and above all his brilliance as a poet, all recommend him to be publicly celebrated as a brilliant comet-like life force - an inspiration to those who knew him 200 years ago ... even more of an inspiration to those who know him ... read him ... believe in him today.”
Writer and Sussex resident Julia Donaldson, who is also a former Children’s Laureate, said: “As a writer and resident of Sussex, I am very happy to support the proposal to commemorate the poet Percy Bysshe Shelley with a permanent, public artwork in Horsham.
“It is right that we should recognise such a great poet, particularly in the place associated with his family and early life, where the beauty of our county was to inspire his work.
“I fully support the project and wish the project group the best of luck with the fundraising campaign that will deliver a fantastic memorial to Shelley.”
Memorial project chairman David Hide said: “We are really pleased to have such great support for our project from Julia, Julian and all those who have joined our supporters’ list.
“Next year we are looking forward to presenting a programme of events in Horsham to mark a really important Shelley anniversary.
“We are delighted that Julian has agreed to present his performance of readings from the romantic poets as part of that programme, and we look forward to announcing more details of that and our other events in the new year.
“We are always looking for more people to help us with our project; we, of course, welcome contributions from individuals and businesses to our fundraising campaign.
“Anyone interested in helping or making a donation to the project can contact us via our website: www.shelleymemorialproject.co.uk, orfundraising site: www.peoplesfundraising.com/donation/the-shelley-memorial-projectil or email [email protected]”