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Thomas West Project

Christian worked with Cumbria Tourism in 2009 on a project connecting cultural tourism and the picturesque discovery of the Lake District. Vista is looking forward to implementing a project starting in 2010.

The background to the project is Picturesque Tourism, an activity established in the mid-eighteenth century by aesthetes and connoisseurs and supported by the authors of early travelogues who together created the index of value against which it is now possible to describe the landscape of Cumbria and the Lake District as a cultural asset. The writing of Thomas West distils the content and preoccupations of the early ‘aesthetic guides’ and offers West’s unique invention ‘The Landscape Station’ as a practical tool for the travelling aesthete.

The term ‘Stations’ can be used as the OED describes and Thomas West meant it to mean:

n., place, building, etc., in which person or thing stands or is placed esp. habitually or for definite purpose (was assigned a station in the valley; took up a convenient station…)

West’s guide for refers to the observations of other picturesque guides and offers the author’s own critiques and appraisals relative to the earlier descriptions. It is important to understand that the narratives of the early picturesque guides are all descriptive of a spatial and social experience. These narratives are a cultural invention and they require active interpretation and participation to be understood.

One Comment

  1. Chris
    Posted January 29, 2010 at 12:24 pm | Permalink

    I’ve been there – great surrounding woods too!

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