Category Archives: Robert Bloomfield

Campton In Search of Robert Bloomfield

It has always been my intention to pay my respects and visit the last resting place of Robert Bloomfield in Campton Bedfordshire having visited the place of his birth and youth, Honington and Sapiston in Suffolk back in the summer of 2013.

We almost made it a reality some months ago when passing through Shefford, Robert’s last place of residence, but my geography let me down and I was too lazy to re-program the Satellite Navigation.

This time I was determined not to make the same mistake as dear old John Clare regretting forever a missed opportunity, not that I had anything like his excuse.

Therefore we set off one bright Sunday morning in April 2014,with a meticulously planned route down to the last hundred yards we soon found ourselves outside All Saints Church in Campton as the last of the congregation were tumbling out of the Palm Sunday Service.

All Saints Church and graveyard Campton was the burial ground for the village of Shefford until the present century as Shefford only had a chapel at ease. Today Campton and Shefford are divided today by the busy A507 road .

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All Saints Church, Campton, Bedfordshire.

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Memorial Plate to Robert Bloomfield in All Saints Church

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Robert Bloomfield last resting place sitting to the north west of the church.

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Robert is buried next to Thomas Inskip of Shefford

who was friends of both Robert Bloomfield and John Clare.

John Clare on Robert Bloomfield:

“He is the most original poet of the age and the greatest Pastoral Poet England ever gave birth to” John Clare.

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One of The Stained Glass Windows in this historic church it is to the memory of one of the Osborn family who’s memorials adorn the church.


Web Links:

Campton Website and Robert Bloomfield Link

Thomas Inskip and the Pastoral Poets


Honington and Sapiston: In Search of Robert Bloomfield

If you mention the name of Honington in Suffolk I would imagine that it is the RAF base that springs to mind and not the birthplace of a sadly neglected Romantic poet.

Honington lies to the North East of Bury St Edmunds and the South East of Thetford the birth place of Thomas Paine the author of the Rights of Man.

Although it is Honington Raf base which is most famous, the village which it takes it name from lies about a mile to the west of The RAF Base.

Robert Bloomfield the author of A Farmers Boy which was a publishing sensation was born here on the 3rd December 1766 he was educated by his mother who run the village school until he was a eleven when he was sent to work on his Uncle William Austen’s farm across the river Blackbourn in Sapiston.

NEGLECTED now the early daisy lies:

Nor thou, pale primrose, bloom’st the only prize:

Advancing SPRING profusely spreads abroad

Flow’rs of all hues, with sweetest fragrance stor’d;

Where’er she treads, LOVE gladdens every plain,

Delight on tiptoe bears her lucid train;

Sweet Hope with conscious brow before her flies,

Anticipating wealth from Summer skies;

All Nature feels her renovating sway;

The sheep-fed pasture, and the meadow gay;

And trees, and shrubs, no longer budding seen,

Display the new-grown branch of lighter green;

On airy downs the shepherd idling lies,

And sees to-morrow in the marbled skies.

From A Farmers Boy, Spring by Robert Bloomfield

Spring

View from The Village Church of Sapiston