Tolkien and the Great War Lib/E
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Dec 9, 2020
2020/12/9 1:45:15 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia

Berelach wrote:

Have any of the celebrity 'contributors' made a statement concerning any of this in the last couple days?

I can't speak for others but Ian McKellen still has the video post pinned on his social media accounts. I don't think he addressed any concerns and there have been posts about them.
Dec 9, 2020
2020/12/9 8:33:42 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
Matt Graf has made an announcement on the Tolkien Society facebook page - he'll be speaking to Julia Golding today at 4 pm GMT, and asks the TS group members to supply him with some questions for her. Here's a link to his youtube page -

Dec 9, 2020 (edited)
2020/12/9 8:58:41 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
And at the same time a PR piece from John Rhys-Davies, hopefully does not repeat his claim that no centres exist for Tolkien
Dec 9, 2020
2020/12/9 11:00:13 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
Another question that I thought of, which would be good to get asked this afternoon.

If the charity purchases the house, what length commitment do they have before selling it again and what would happen to the funds from any subsequent sale of the house by the Charity?
Dec 9, 2020 (edited)
2020/12/9 12:33:10 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
The limited company part seems to have the regular answers to that - all assets on winding up have to be given to charities of similar interests or failing that the Charity Commission will pass it on to similar charities. I have not looked through all of the document but there is no time limit, afaik. I may be mistaken!

Which does open up a massive amount of avenues this money might be going because there are a huge number of charities that are just like that
Dec 9, 2020
2020/12/9 12:40:17 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
Which basically means that they could buy the house and then sell it and use the money for whatever they want.
Dec 9, 2020
2020/12/9 13:14:36 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
Well, not quite. It would have to be another charitiy and/or institution in the same vein which would be education/ culture.

And in their constitution they do declare:

1. TO PRESERVE 20 NORTHMOOR ROAD, OXFORD AS THE FORMER HOME OF JRR TOLKIEN AND WHERE THE HOBBIT AND THE LORD OF THE RINGS WERE WRITTEN (...)

I am not sure how they could possibly get around following this point but then I am not a lawyer with a speciality in charity work.

But if you buy it now, sell it in the same year, then wind down the charity - well ...

We should give them the benefit of the doubt as those involved would have to have an interest in doing this for another such institution and ... oh.
Dec 9, 2020
2020/12/9 14:22:32 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
I am a little at a loss here but is this ... backpedalling?

"We understand most people are giving in the hopes of securing the first objective but this property was offered to us for sale by the current owner and we can’t guarantee that he won’t sell it to someone else,” [Julia Golding] said."

From the latest Guardian piece.
Dec 9, 2020
2020/12/9 14:29:15 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia

Olwe wrote:

Well, not quite. It would have to be another charitiy and/or institution in the same vein which would be education/ culture.

And in their constitution they do declare:

1. TO PRESERVE 20 NORTHMOOR ROAD, OXFORD AS THE FORMER HOME OF JRR TOLKIEN AND WHERE THE HOBBIT AND THE LORD OF THE RINGS WERE WRITTEN (...)

I am not sure how they could possibly get around following this point but then I am not a lawyer with a speciality in charity work.

Again not quite. I just spoke with a lawyer friend about that point and I am afraid the statement is as "wishy washy as water running down a drain". All they have to do to preserve the home is do nothing. The home is already preserved under its Grade II protections.

He says also that their plans actually rub against the very protections in place. A bed and breakfast, a smoking room, a Hobbit hole, using rooms upstairs to present aspects of Middle-earth are all contrary to protecting the house and its status.

With that I doubt there is anything that this groups leadership could offer to ease my own concerns. Others may feel different but from what I can gather the only thing that enables this house to remain protected is that it continues as a private family home with the Heritage England listing it already has. The legal status says:

This building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest.

He doubts they can even do the work they claim they want to. That if they asked about it then it would be available for the public to read as it is a matter of public record and that they should have inquired about alterations before the fund was started. I can't see in the 'at risk 2020' that 20 Northmoor Road has been listed. With that I think Heritage England do not consider the site at any risk or in need of change.
Dec 9, 2020
2020/12/9 14:30:36 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia

Olwe wrote:

I am a little at a loss here but is this ... backpedalling?

"We understand most people are giving in the hopes of securing the first objective but this property was offered to us for sale by the current owner and we can’t guarantee that he won’t sell it to someone else,” [Julia Golding] said."


From the latest Guardian piece.

When I read that I wrote a message here but decided not to post it as I wondered if I was just reading too much into it at this point but my thoughts were that it was just another attempt to show fans the house was at risk.
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