Benjamin Britten, George Orwell, Maggi Hambling and Joyce Grenfell are among dozens of cultural icons inspired by the delights of coastal Suffolk over more than two centuries, as detailed in a beautifully illustrated new book, now released in hardcover.

With 2013 being Britten’s centenary year The Cultural Heritage of Coastal Suffolk explores how the renowned composer and performances of his works at Snape Maltings form only just a part of the area’s creative heritage.

For EM Forster, Elizabeth Jane Howard, WH Auden, Yehudi Menuhin, JMW Turner and Charles Rennie Mackintosh and many other musicians, actors, painters and writers, the unpredictable North Sea, enormous skies and abundant wildlife were more than a mere backdrop as author Peter Willsher discovered after years of researching the subject.

He said: “I wrote the book after a suggestion made to me by someone who knew exactly what I would find – it’s been quite a journey.”

Peter discovered the close-knit nature of the many literary, musical and artisitic personalities that surrounded Benjamin Britten and, with one connection leading to another, he was soon exploring the lives of many artists of the 19th and 20th centuries who found their way to Walberswick. The history of Jill Freud’s Summer Theatre at Southwold and Aldeburgh and theatrical connections of the region stretching back to medieval times make fascinating reading.

Peter said “It’s been a magnificent story and I’m privileged to have been able to tell it.” 

The Cultural Heritage of Coastal Suffolk (hardback £17.95, ISBN 978-178035-578-8) is available to order from the publisher at cultural-heritage-of-coastal-suffolk or from any good bookshop or internet retailer.

For more information, pictures or interviews please contact Marika Buttigieg at Fast-Print Publishing on 01733 404828 or [email protected]


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