Notable Celebrities

Over the centuries Rydal has provided inspiration for many writers, artists, thinkers and poets.

Most notable among these are:

J.M.W. Turner: 1775-1851 The supreme master of British watercolour landscape painting.

Thomas Girtin: 1775-1802  An immensely gifted painter and contemporary of Turner who died tragically young leading Turner to say,“Had poor Tom Girtin lived I should have starved”.

Joseph Farington: 1747-1821 Painter & diarist

Francis Towne: 1739 - 1816 Watercolorist & teacher who came on “study trips” to the Lake District.

Julius Caesar Ibbotson: 1759- 1817 Born in Leeds. Painted Pelter Bridge.

William Green: 1760-1823 Born in Manchester, made his home in Ambleside. Produced soft ground etchings of Rydal.

Joseph Wright of Derby: 1734- 1797 Painted Rydal Waterfall in 1795.

John Constable1776- 1837 Painted the Lower Cascade, Birk Haggs 1806

Coplestone Warre Bampfylde: 1720-1791 Landowner, garden designer & artist 

Edward Lear1812-1888 Artist, musician, illustrator, poet & author sketched Rydal Water on 17th October 1836

Frederic  Yates: 1854-1919. Rydal resident, landscape & portrait painter. Painted Ellen Nussey (lifelong friend of Charlotte Bronte) Sir Henry Wood, President Woodrow Wilson & numerous notable 19th & early 20th century celebrities.

Alfred Heaton Cooper: 1863- 1929 Highly acclaimed Victorian artist renowned for Lakeland landscapes

William Heaton Cooper1903-1995 English impressionistic landscape painter, born in Coniston

Julian Heaton Cooper: born 1947. Resident of Hart Head Cottage in the early 1970’s

William Wordsworth: 1770-1850 English Romanic poet & Poet Laureate to Queen Victoria 

Hartley Coleridge: 1796-1849 Son of Samuel Taylor Coleridge. Poet, essayist & biographer.

Thomas de Quincey: 1785-1859. Author, essayist, journalist  & (briefly) editor of the Westmorland Gazette.

Woodrow Wilson: 1856-1924 American politician (USA president 1913- 1921) & academic. Close friend of Fred Yates.

Sir Henry Wood: 1869-1944 English conductor, composer & founder of the annual Promenade Concerts.
Painted by Fred Yates, gave singing lessons to Yate’s daughter, Mary at Hart Head Cottage.

John Ruskin:1819-1900 Artist & polymath.

Thomas Gray: 1716-1771 English poet,historian, classical scholar & letter writer
best known for his Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard.

John Drinkwater: 1882-1937 Poet and dramatist, friend of Fred Yates for whom he wrote the poem  ”Sunrise on Rydal Water”.  Fred had been given permission, by Squire Le Fleming, to fish for pike in Rydal Water during the Great War and, through his efforts, did much to supplement the village food supply. Fred took Drinkwater out on Rydal Water to fish and Drinkwater dedicated the poem to his friend to commemorate their friendship.

Clemence Dane: 1888-1965 Novelist and playwright famous for her 1921 play, ‘A Bill of Divorcement’, later made into a film starring Katherine Hepburn. Her portrait by Fred Yates,  who became a friend,hangs in the National Portrait Gallery. 

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