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Last Updated: Tuesday, 4 July 2006, 18:56 GMT 19:56 UK
Pledge to restore poet's heritage
John Clare, 1793 - 1864. Getty Images / Hulton Archive
John Clare, 1793 - 1864. Getty Images / Hulton Archive
A plan to restore the home of the 19th century peasant poet John Clare is set to receive 1.35m from Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF).

The John Clare Trust wants to buy the cottage in Helpston, Cambs, where Clare lived for much of his life.

Clare, who was born in 1793, is recognised as one of the great English Romantic poets.

The Trust has received a pledge of 1,272,000 and an additional 39,600 for the John Clare cottage revamp.

Inspirational story

The cash will go towards restoring the cottage using traditional building methods, fitting it out to tell the story of Clare's life and recreating the rooms as they would have looked in the 18th century.

The funding will also pay for a manager and education officer for five years.

Clare lived in the cottage during his period of literary success in the 1820's before leaving for nearby Northborough in 1832.

He was admitted to an asylum five years later and spent the rest of his life in asylums before being buried in Helpston in 1864.

Paul Chirico, John Clare Trust chair, said: "Clare's story can be an inspiration for visitors of all ages, and his passion for his environment will engage new generations with today's urgent issues."



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