Victorian Fayre

William Barnes Society Fund-Raising Event to celebrate the life of William Barnes the Dorset dialect poet.

Saturday 24th February 2018

William Barnes and My Father
Sam Jeffery


My father was Donald Behenna Jeffery and he was born in 1919. I remember him talking about William Barnes, extolling his writing, and praising his poetry. I know his interest took him to William Barnes Society meetings because I found programmes in the books I have presented to the Society and Trevor W Hearl’s ‘William Barnes The Schoolmaster’, which I have kept, has an inscription written in 1975. I think his love and not inconsiderable knowledge of the quiet Dorset countryside, and its wildlife (especially birds), is the element with which he identified with the quiet gentle William Barnes. I remember him reading ‘A Bit O’ Sly Coorten’ with his second wife in very good Dorset dialect.

Donald Behenna Jeffery was born in Dorchester and went to the Hardye’s Grammar School. He was commissioned into the Royal Navy and served during WWII, however he returned to Dorchester in 1953 to join his father in the gun business in High East Street. His working knowledge of guns was considerable, and he taught shooting, but his great love was fishing, trout fishing on the Frome, and although he could not approach the shadow of the incredible scholar’s knowledge and achievements, my father would have been a good teacher with his love of reading and knowledge of history.

I was fortunate enough to have been left many of my father’s books but I am in the process of reducing my belongings, a very natural but painful experience, and although I have given many to my children and other family members, I thought that the two volumes of Barnes’ poetry would be best enjoyed by devotees of William Barnes. I hope they will be.

Donald Jeffery died in 1995 and at his Remembrance Service my daughter read the lines from William Barnes’ statue outside St Peter’s Church; for us they were powerful and appropriate.

‘But now I hope his kindly face
Is gone to find a better place
But still with folk a-left behind
He’ll always be a-kept in mind’.

Sam Jeffery has very kindly donated The Poems of William Barnes Edited by Bernard Jones Vol 1 in Dorset Dialect and The Poems of William Barnes Edited by Bernard Jones Vol 2 in National English to the Society.

If any member is interested in loaning these books please contact Secretary, William Barnes Society.

JAN 2018

William Barnes and My Father
Sumple
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Forthcoming events

Victorian Fayre William Barnes Society Fund-Raising Event to celebrate the life of William Barnes the Dorset dialect poet. Saturday 24th February 2018
What’s the point of William Barnes in 21st Century? For the many years of the dominance of Received Pronunciation (RP) it was easy to see William Barnes as an irrelevant eccentric. With more recent developments in linguistics, and a growing interest in national and regional diversity, it may be time for Barnes to reclaim his place as a significant figure in the world!! Dr Richard Bradbury will also discuss his more socially engaged prose works. Tuesday 27th March 2018
Annual Service of Remembrance of William Barnes Morning service, with dialect reading and wreath laying at William Barnes and and his daughter Laura grave Sunday 22nd April 2018
The Serpent and it’s Local Connections Come an listen to musician, Philip Humphries talk on the history and development of the strange bass wind instrument known as the 'Serpent' due to its curious shape. This talk will be interspersed with music and poetry. Tuesday 15th May 2018

Latest news

Come, so’s, an’ buy at Fancy Feäir Traditional Victorian Fayre, a William Barnes Society Fund-Raising event to celebrate the life of William Barnes, Dorset dialect poet Monday 19th February 2018
William Barnes and My Father Sam Jeffrey has very kindly donated The Poems of William Barnes Edited by Bernard Jones Vol 1 in Dorset Dialect and The Poems of William Barnes Edited by Bernard Jones Vol 2 in National English to the Society. Sunday 28th January 2018
John Blackmore captivates Society members Following the recent William Barnes Society Annual General Meeting, John Blackmore presented 'Music and Song' to the audience. Sunday 15th October 2017
Service of Remembrance to William Barnes On Sunday 8h October 2017 10:30am, at St Peter’s Church, Dorchester, the Morning Service to commemorate the anniversary of the death of William Barnes took place. It was followed by a wreath laying at the statute. Monday 9th October 2017

William Barnes and Winslow Homer

William Barnes and Winslow HomerWilliam Barnes and Winslow Homer Jim Potts examines the illustrations by artists Winslow Homer and Hammatt Billings for William Barnes book 'Rural Poems' published in Boston, America in 1869

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