A biennial prize of £2,000 has been launched by the Hall Bequest Trust in association with The Georgian Group in recognition of the great contribution that George Clarke has made to Stowe in Buckinghamshire. In the course of over sixty years, the historian and champion of Stowe was a Chairman of the Hall Bequest Trust, which aims to support Stowe through acquisitions and education.
Stowe House (a school since 1923) was built as a summer residence of the Temple-Grenville family, and in its completed form remains amongst the grandest of eighteenth-century mansions. From c.1688-1810 it was remodelled in numerous phases by many of the leading architects of the age including Vanbrugh, Gibbs, Kent and Soane, though the family also took a personal involvement in aspects of design. Recent restoration work has spurred new research and interest. Yet the magnificent landscape gardens which remain remarkably intact are no less interesting. They are owned by the National Trust which has recently invested heavily in replanting the early Georgian gardens and creating a new visitor centre.
Much remains to be discovered about Stowe, as its cultural context is notably broad, while the 350,000 historic Stowe papers are held at the Huntington Library in Pasadena, California, with which George Clarke was instrumental in developing a close working relationship.
The £2,000 Prize will be awarded for original research pertinent to Stowe within the fields of architecture, architectural history, the material arts or landscape design.
To apply, please e-mail your research proposal to firstname.lastname@example.org by 30 June 2016. The winner will be invited to write an article arising from his or her research, which will be considered for publication in The Georgian Group Journal, and to give a lecture within three months of completion of the research.