An urgent campaign has been started by the Art Fund, Creative Folkestone and Tate to raise £3.5M by the end of March to save Prospect Cottage and its contents for the nation.
In the shadow of Dungeness nuclear power station, Derek Jarman, film maker, artist and author transformed the shingle surrounding the cottage into a beautiful garden. Jarman wrote how ‘Paradise haunts gardens, and some gardens are paradises. Mine is one of them. Others are like bad children – spoilt by their parents, over-watered and covered with noxious chemicals… Other paradises: Christopher Lloyds’s Great Dixter up the road. Gardens that deny paradise: Hidcote Manor, known to us as Hideouscote, which is so manicured that not one plant seems to touch its neighbour… Great Dixter; it’s shaggy. If a garden isn’t shaggy, forget it.’ derek jarman’s garden
Backed by the art and film world, the proposed scheme is for visitors to have free access to the garden with guided tours of the inside of the cottage where there would be an artist in residence. The more fragile items including Jarman’s archive, will be conserved and put on display in Tate. £3.5 million needs to be found by March 31st, a deadline set by the trustees of Keith Collins, Jarman’s partner, who died in 2018. For more information and to donate now, click here.