SURFWORCESTER

 

ELGAR BIRTHPLACE MUSEUM, CROWN EAST LANE, LOWER BROADHEATH


ELGAR BIRTHPLACE MUSEUM/ELGAR CENTRE


Edward Elgar was born in this pretty cottage on 2nd June 1857. It now houses a superb collection of manuscripts, memorabilia and photographs relating to Elgar. The new Elgar Centre,adjacent to the cottage, is now open and houses special exhibitions and events concerning the man widely regarded as Englands greatest composer.The museum is in the village of Lower Broadheath. The entrance is next to The Plough Inn.
By road:
From Worcester city centre take the A44 Leominster road. Just after the roundabout junction with the A4440 southern ring road, turn right to Lower Broadheath at Crown East Church, signposted for the Elgar Birthplace Museum, and continue for 3/4 mile.
From the M5 leave at junction 7 and follow the A4440 Worcester southern ring road. At its roundabout junction with the A44, turn towards
Leominster and almost immediately turn right to Lower Broadheath at Crown East Church, sign- posted for the Elgar Birthplace Museum, and continue for 3/4 mile.
By rail
Regular trains from London, Birmingham and all parts of the country serve stations at Worcester Foregate Street (3 miles) or Worcester Shrub Hill (4 miles)
By bus
From Worcester city centre (Crowngate Bus Station) an infrequent bus service passes the Birthplace Museum, with more frequent services to Crown East Church within a 20-minute walk of the museum: details from the County Busline, telephone 0345 125436.

The Museum carpark is located behind The Plough Inn, 50 yards from the Birthplace.

OPEN EVERY DAY (last admission 4.15pm)

11.00am - 5.00pm

Adults £3.50
Children £1.50
Senior Citizens £2.60
Students £1.75
Family Ticket £8.50 (2 adults & upto 3 children)

Price reductions for group bookings. For details contact the Museum Services Manager, Elgar Birthplace Museum, Crown East Lane, Lower Broadheath, Worcester WR2 6RH

Telephone: (01905) 333224

Sir Edward Elgar who rose from obscurity to become England's greatest composer for 200 years, was born on 2nd June 1857, at Broadheath near Worcester.

He was organist, violinist, teacher, conductor and self-taught composer After 1900 his compositions won international recognition, the best known being The Dream of Gerontius, the Enigma Variations, the two Symphonies, the Concertos for violin and cello, and Land of Hope and Glory

From 1878 to 1933 he was associated with the Three Choirs Festivals held in Worcester. Hereford and Gloucester The statue of Sir Edward Elgar in Worcester shows him at the age of 54 in the robes ofa Doctor of Music, which he often wore when conducting at these Festivals. Knighted 1904, Freeman of Worcester 1905, O.M. 1911, K.C.V.O. 1928, Baronet 1931. G.C.V.O. 1933, Master of the Kings Music 1924-1934.

He died in Worcester on 23rd February, 1934.

ELGAR'S BIRTHPLACE COTTAGE

The cottage is in the heart of the countryside Elgar loved, near the Teme valley and facing the Malvem Hills.

The cottage now houses a unique collection of price-less manuscripts, scores, concert programmes, and press cuttings. The collection of photographs, spans those from the family snap-shot albums to records of formal and solemn occasions.

The composers desk is there, laid out by his daughter, Carice, in the way her mother prepared it when her father was composing. This and many personal memorabilia record the great composer's life, work, family and friends.

THE ELGAR CENTRE

Complementing the birthplace cottage is the new Elgar centre, with a purpose built exhibition area enabling visitors to explore Elgar’s musical life, inspirations and compositional techniques. Permanent exhibitions and temporary displays show selections from the unique collection of

manuscripts

music scores

concert programmes

photographs

press cuttings & memorabilia

Records, cassettes, music, books, postcards and souvenir items for all the family are on sale.

A MAN & HIS MUSIC

Some shrines of great men are depressing places from which the spirit of those they commemorate has long since fled, leaving nothing but the mouldy atmosphere of a mausoleum. Or they are altered, in such a way that the public feel some kind of confidence trick is being played upon them.

But Elgar's Birthplace is in neither of these categories. By some extraordinary alchemy it is redolent of Elgar. It is, as Barrie might have written, a cottage that likes to be visited. It is welcoming, and once you are there you will be absorbed into the atmosphere of Elgar's circle of friends. The scores and photographs, the books, his desk, mementoes and programmcs of long-past concerts, the garden-somehow these are not relics but living testimony to Elgar's immortality: Some years ago, when I did some research at the Birthplace and sat there reading and copying for hours, I had the most uncanny sensation of his spirit alive in the house, not a ghost but a presence.

Elgar's nostalgia for his childhood and for the little cottage at Broadheath was expressed in a letter in 1917: The cottage....is nearer the clump of Scotch firs. I can smell them now-in the hot sun. Oh! how cruel that I was not there- there, nothing between that infancy and now and I want to see it

Elgar's Birthplace is central to the British heritage. The nation's artistic pulse beats there, as it does in Stratford-upon-Avon and at Dove Cottage, Grasmere. And Elgar's music is in the air all around you, just as he said it was.

Michael Kennedy