Monday, 27 April 2015

Memorial Hut, Selworthy Beacon

The Memorial Hut on Selworthy Beacon (grid reference SS 915 476) is also sometimes known as the Wind and Weather Hut.  It is a stone built shelter, erected in 1878 and built as a memorial to Sir Thomas Dyke Acland 10th Baronet (1787-1871) by his youngest son, John Barton Arundel Acland of Holnicate, New Zealand.  The Acland family owned the Holnicote Estate, which includes Selworthy Beacon, from the middle of the 18th century until Sir Richard Thomas Dyke Acland, the 15th Baronet, gave it to the National Trust in 1944.  The hut is located about 300 metres to the east of the free public car park at the end of the road at Selworthy Beacon.

The hut has seats on all four sides.  The 2 shorter sides have verses by John Keble and Reginald Heber inscribed into them:

I praised the earth in beauty seen,
With garlands gay of various green;
I praised the sea whose ample field
Shone glorious as a silver shield;
And earth and ocean seemed to say,
Our beauties are but for a day.
 O God! O Good beyond compare!
If thus Thy meaner works are fair,
If thus Thy bounties gild the span
Of ruin'd earth and sinful man,
How glorious must the mansion be,
Where Thy redeemed shall dwell with Thee!

The above are the first and third verses of Praise by Reginald Heber (1783-1826)

Needs no show of mountain hoary,
   Winding shore or deepening glen,
Where the landscape in its glory
   Teaches truth to wandering men:
Give true hearts but earth and sky,
And some flowers to bloom and die,
Homely scenes and simple views
Lowly thoughts may best infuse.

This verse is taken from a longer poem - First Sunday after Ephiphany by John Keble.  It was part of his book The Christian Year

Further Reading

 A Devon family: the story of the Aclands by Lady Acland.  Published by Phillimore, 1981

The Acland family: maps and surveys 1720-1840: edited by Mary R. Ravenhill and Margery M. Rowe.  Published by Devon and Cornwall Record Society, 2006

Memorial Hut, Selworthy Beacon

Memorial Hut, Selworthy Beacon

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