In this post I will be focusing on “Banishead Quarry” by Nigel Wilkins.
It always amazes me how much literary history can be found in unexpected places. Banishead is a disused slate quarry and had acquired a waterfall and pool over the years; it is rumoured to be the work of two schoolboys who accidently rerouted a beck in 1950.
Banishead is in the Lake District which has its fair amount of literature links. A group of English poets who all lived in the Lake District at the turn of the 19th century joined together to create The Lake Poets which reminds me quite a lot of the group that forms in the film Dead Poets Society. The Lake Poets consisted of famous poets such as William Wordsworth, Samuel Taylor Coleridge and Robert Southey. They were even associated with Charles Lamb, Josh Wilson and Thomas De Quincey. The group was looked upon by others with distaste as they were considered part of the Romantic movement. Wordsworth was considered not just a nature poet as his poetry is about the “organic relationships between human beings and the natural world.” Robert Southey, though part of this poetry group, was actually more of a prose writer.
Alfred Wainwright, a British author and illustrator, fell so in love with the Lake District that he decided to move there and write guidebooks about the area. His pictorial guides offer a mixture of pen-ink sketches, maps and musings. The Lake District returned the love he had for its landscape after his death as a memorial dedicated to him can be found in a church at Buttermere.