Pope's Urn, on Champion's Wharfat Twickenham riverside in the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames, is a contemporary piece of public art inspired by the poetry of 18th-century Twickenham resident Alexander Pope, who is buried in the parish church that overlooks the wharf. It consists of a stylised urn on a pedestal, both made in corten steel and standing just over eight-foot (2.5 metres) high, surrounded by wooden benches inscribed with aphorisms written by Pope. It was commissioned to celebrate the 2015 Rugby World Cup, for which Twickenham Stadium was one of the venues, and was opened in a ceremony on 21 September 2015.
Twickenham is an affluent suburban town in south-west London, England. It lies on the River Thames and is 10 miles (16 km) west-southwest of Charing Cross, 2 miles (3.2 km) south-east of Hounslow, and 2.6 miles (4.2 km) north-west of Kingston upon Thames. Historically part of Middlesex, it has formed part of the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames since 1965.
The London Borough of Richmond upon Thames in south-west London, England, forms part of Outer London and is the only London borough on both sides of the River Thames. It was created in 1965 when three smaller council areas amalgamated under the London Government Act 1963. It is governed by Richmond upon Thames London Borough Council and is divided into nineteen wards.
Public art is art in any media that has been planned and executed with the intention of being staged in the physical public domain, usually outside and accessible to all. Public art is significant within the art world, amongst curators, commissioning bodies and practitioners of public art, to whom it signifies a working practice of site specificity, community involvement and collaboration. Public art may include any art which is exhibited in a public space including publicly accessible buildings, but often it is not that simple. Rather, the relationship between the content and audience, what the art is saying and to whom, is just as important if not more important than its physical location.
Pope's Urn was the initiative of Twickenham resident Graham Henderson as public art consultant for the London-based arts charity Poet in the City.Henderson conceived the project and worked in partnership with Richmond upon Thames Council, and the architectural design practice Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios, to design, build and install it. It was unveiled by Lord True, Leader of Richmond Council, in a ceremony which included readings from Pope's works by the actor John Hannah, who is a local resident, and by the actress Dame Harriet Walter.
Graham Henderson is a cultural entrepreneur based in London. He is best known for developing the arts organisation Poet in the City. In 2014 he launched a second arts organisation, the Rimbaud and Verlaine Foundation, committed to cross-arts commissioning and to championing a new funding model for the arts. Henderson has also been involved in many other arts-related initiatives including the development of a public art consultancy, the creation of an international arts network and a campaign to create a new investment fund for the arts.
Poet in the City brings poetry to life beyond books, digging out classic and contemporary gems and immersing audiences in the worlds of poets through events, commissions and participation.
Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios is a British architectural design firm, established in 1978, with offices in Bath, London, Manchester, Belfast and Edinburgh. The firm is known for its pioneering work in sustainable design and social design agenda.
The sculpture is based on drawings that have survived of an urn designed by Alexander Pope for a friend's garden at Hagley Hall, Worcestershire.The original urn no longer exists.
Hagley Hall is a Grade I listed 18th-century house in Hagley, Worcestershire, the home of the Lyttelton family. It was the creation of George, 1st Lord Lyttelton (1709–1773), secretary to Frederick, Prince of Wales, poet and man of letters and briefly Chancellor of the Exchequer. Before the death of his father in 1751, he began to landscape the grounds in the new Picturesque style, and between 1754 and 1760 it was he who was responsible for the building of the Neo-Palladian house that survives to this day.
Worcestershire is a county in the West Midlands of England.
The line For fools rush in where angels fear to tread was first written by Alexander Pope in his 1711 poem An Essay on Criticism. The phrase alludes to inexperienced or rash people attempting things that more experienced people avoid. It has since entered the general English lexicon as an idiom.
An Essay on Criticism is one of the first major poems written by the English writer Alexander Pope (1688–1744). It is the source of the famous quotations "To err is human, to forgive divine", "A little learning is a dang'rous thing", and "Fools rush in where angels fear to tread". It first appeared in 1711 after having been written in 1709, and it is clear from Pope's correspondence that many of the poem's ideas had existed in prose form since at least 1706. Composed in heroic couplets and written in the Horatian mode of satire, it is a verse essay primarily concerned with how writers and critics behave in the new literary commerce of Pope's contemporary age. The poem covers a range of good criticism and advice, and represents many of the chief literary ideals of Pope's age.
Alexander Pope is regarded as one of the greatest English poets, and the foremost poet of the early eighteenth century. He is best known for his satirical and discursive poetry—including The Rape of the Lock, The Dunciad, and An Essay on Criticism—as well as for his translation of Homer. After Shakespeare, Pope is the second-most quoted writer in the English language, as per The Oxford Dictionary of Quotations, some of his verses having even become popular idioms in common parlance. He is considered a master of the heroic couplet.
Pope's villa was the residence of Alexander Pope at Twickenham, then a village west of London in Middlesex. He moved there in 1719 and created gardens and an underground grotto. The house and grotto were topics of 18th- and 19th-century poetry and art. In about 1845, a neo-Tudor house known as Pope's Villa was built on approximately the same site; it has been used as a school since the early 20th century. Pope's Grotto, which is listed Grade II* by Historic England, survives and is occasionally open to the public.
Kew is a district in the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames, 1.5 miles (2.4 km) north-east of Richmond and 7.1 miles (11.4 km) west by south-west of Charing Cross; its population at the 2011 census was 11,436. Kew is the location of the Royal Botanic Gardens, now a World Heritage Site, which includes Kew Palace. Kew is also the home of important historical documents such as Domesday Book, which is held at The National Archives.
Richmond is a suburban town in south-west London, 8.2 miles (13.2 km) west-southwest of Charing Cross. It is on a meander of the River Thames, with a large number of parks and open spaces, including Richmond Park, and many protected conservation areas, which include much of Richmond Hill. A specific Act of Parliament protects the scenic view of the River Thames from Richmond.
St Margarets is a suburb in the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames, about 9 miles (14 km) west-southwest of central London. It is within the Twickenham post town. It is bounded by the River Thames to the north, east and south, and the River Crane to the north-west; the northern limit, less well defined, has changed with local government boundary revisions. St Margarets does not pass any further south than Richmond Road, Twickenham. The area closer to Richmond Bridge is known as East Twickenham and is not regarded as part of St Margarets.
Whitton is a residential area in South West London, and is in the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames. Together with the neighbouring electoral ward of Heathfield, it forms the north-western part of Twickenham and is located in Southwest London. Whitton and Heathfield are often considered together for administrative purposes. The area has a railway station on the Windsor Line from London Waterloo and has good road links with the A316 running through the area that leads to the M3 motorway. The focus of the district is the High Street which is one of the best-preserved 1930s high streets in London. The most common type of housing in the area is 1930's detached and semi-detached housing. As a mainly residential area in outer London, many residents commute to Central London; education, retail, transport and catering businesses are also significant local employers.
Twickenham railway station is in Twickenham in the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames, and is in Travelcard Zone 5. By track it is 11 miles 22 chains (18.1 km) from London Waterloo. Only one main street abuts the station — at its west end — London Road running between a trunk road south of Twickenham Stadium and the town centre to the south including the town's public section of riverside.
Richmond upon Thames London Borough Council elections are held every four years for all 54 councillor seats in the 18 wards that make up the Borough Council. By-elections are held in individual wards when vacancies arise outside the four-year cycle.
The Mortlake Crematorium is a crematorium in Kew, near its boundary with Mortlake, in the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames. It opened in 1939, next to Mortlake Cemetery.
Richmond upon Thames London Borough Council is the local authority for the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames in Greater London, England. It is a London borough council, one of 32 in London, the United Kingdom capital. Richmond upon Thames is divided into 18 wards and elections for all Council seats in the borough are held every four years. The most recent election was in 2018.
Orleans House was a Palladian villa built by the architect John James in 1710 near the Thames at Twickenham, England, for the politician and diplomat James Johnston. It was subsequently named after the Duc d'Orléans who stayed there in the early 19th century. By the early 20th century it was derelict and in 1926 it was mostly demolished. However, parts of the property, including a baroque octagonal room designed by architect James Gibbs, were preserved. The octagon room and its service wing are listed Grade I by Historic England and, together, with a converted stable block, are now the Orleans House Gallery, a gallery of art relating to the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and neighbouring areas of London.
The Church of St James, Twickenham is a Roman Catholic church at 61 Pope's Grove, Twickenham, in the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames. It is dedicated to St James the Apostle. It is a building of Townscape Merit. The church was opened in 1885 by Cardinal Henry Edward Manning and consecrated by the Cardinal in 1887. For a few years before then Roman Catholic mass was celebrated in a mass centre in Grosvenor Road in the centre of Twickenham.
Radnor Gardens is a small public riverside garden and recreation ground in Strawberry Hill, south of Twickenham in the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames. It has a First World War memorial, a grass area, a bowling green and a children's playground.
Twickenham Cemetery is a cemetery at Hospital Bridge Road, Whitton in the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames. It was established in 1868 and was expanded in the 1880s when the local parish churchyards were closed to new burials.
The Exchange, Twickenham is a community building, including a 320-seat theatre, at Brewery Wharf opposite Twickenham railway station in the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames. It opened in October 2017. The building is owned by Richmond upon Thames Council and is managed by St Mary's University, Twickenham.
Historic England is an executive non-departmental public body of the British Government sponsored by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS). It is tasked with protecting the historical environment of England by preserving and listing historic buildings and ancient monuments and by advising central and local government.
The National Heritage List for England (NHLE) is England’s official list of buildings, monuments, parks and gardens, wrecks, battlefields and World Heritage Sites. It is maintained by Historic England and brings together these different designations as a single resource even though they vary in the type of legal protection afforded to each. Conservation areas do not appear on the NHLE since they are designated by the relevant local planning authority.