While William Morris’s ideas were central to the first garden-suburb’s aesthetic, for young London-Irish Bedford Park resident William Butler Yeats, Morris himself was somewhere between patron and hero. And Kelmscott House, where his sister Lily worked for May Morris, became both focal point for Sunday-night meetings with artistic and political London, and hub of a network that would fire his political thinking, foster his Nobel-Prize-winning career as dramatist and one of the best-loved poets in English literature, and inspire (with his sisters Lily and Lolly) a Celtic cultural revival. Chiswick-based Irish poet, Cahal Dallat, founder of the WB Yeats Bedford Park Artwork Project and creator of the Discover Bedford Park with WB Yeats smartphone trail which features Kelmscott House as one of the ten West London locations that nurtured the young poet’s talent, explores – on Yeats’s birthday (13th June) in his Nobel-Centenary year – why Morris and his circle mattered so much to the emerging genius.
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