Our Patrons

More recently, there have been moves towards a reorganisation of England along regional lines againts the wishes of it’s people, We believe Wessex has a cultural unity that these regions lack. It has its own flag, its own dialect and more recently its own Earl. More importantly, it has some 1500 years of history behind it. Would Thomas Hardy’s novels have had such resonance if they had been set in “the South West”?
The society’s patrons are Lord Bath (owner of Longleat); musicians Gordon Haskell and Acker Bilk; and Bishop Kallistos of Diokleia (a Wessex man who became the first Englishman to be made a bishop of the Orthodox Church in over 900 years).

Wessex Society

A country which is ignorant of its past loses its identity. – Roy Strong

Find that the name Wessex is getting taken up everywhere and it would be a pity for us to lose the right to it for lack of asserting it. – Thomas Hardy

We live in an increasingly globalised world. From Stockholm to Santiago, people are wearing the same clothes, eating the same food and watching the same movies and TV shows. It is time to celebrate the local and the traditional, before they are erased from the public memory altogether.

Wessex Society is a cultural society dedicated to promoting a distinctive identity for the Wessex. (Where is Wessex?, see below map). We take as our role model the Celtic Revival of the 18th and 19th centuries, which revived (and, where necessary, invented) traditions for the nations of the Celtic Fringe (Wales, Scotland, Ireland, the Isle of Man, Cornwall and Brittany). Contemporary Celtic regional identities are almost entirely the product of romantic visionaries such as Sir Walter Scott in Scotland and the Gaelic League in Ireland.

Moves towards Celtic devolution have inevitably reawakened interest in England’s national identity. The primarily rural and agricultural area of Wessex has a unique “vibe” to the industrial heartlands and Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Please note that Wessex Society is in no way affiliated or connected with the Wessex Society of Newfoundland, which seeks to promote cultural contacts between Newfoundland and the West of England.

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